UNION COUNTY — Seven local charities, ministries, and public service organizations each got an early Christmas gift Friday morning in the form of donations from Broad River Electric Charities.
Carol Smith, a member of the board of the Broad River Electric Charities, presented representatives of Meals on Wheels, The Potters Storehouse, WBCU’s Truck Full of Toys, Trinity Baptist Church’s Channel of Blessings Community Outreach Ministry, Union Disabilities and Special Needs, the Union County Baptist Association, and the Salvation Army with donations totaling $8,500. The funds, which will be used by the groups to assist those Union County residents who need their services, are part of $24,500 in donations Broad River Charities in the service area of Broad River Electric Cooperative.
In a press release announcing the donations, Barbara Whitney, chairperson of the Broad River Electric Charities Board, cited the impact the organizations receiving them are having on their communities.
“Since these funds come from donations of the cooperative’s membership, we take the responsibility of distributing the money very seriously,” Whitney said. “These organizations and charitable campaigns are impacting our communities in wonderful ways and it is an honor to be able to help them.”
Jim Stepp accepted the $1,000 donated to Meals on Wheels and said it will help the group continue delivery meals to the needy of Union and Buffalo.
“We’re proud to receive it,” Stepp said. “We’re still running about 100 meals a day, that’s 2,000 per month and it runs around $6,500 a month to get those meals. So we’re happy to receive it and we will appreciate most deeply any organization or individual that donates to us.”
The $1,500 donated to The Potters Storehouse food ministry was accepted by Glenn Sparks who said the money is especially important this time of the year when the demand for the services provided by the church and their accompanying costs increase.
“We’re feeding 4,000 people a month and this time of year we see more need,” Sparks said. “We’ve got to pay power bills which are $800 to $900 a month. We also have to pay Second Harvest to procure our food. Thank you very much to Broad River for coming through again this year.”
Sparks also thanked WBCU for all the help it has given The Potters Storehouse over the years.
WBCU’s Truck Full of Toys campaign received $1,000 and WBCU President and CEO Chris Woodson thanked Broad River for its support of the program which gathers truckloads of toys for needy children in Union County.
“We’re appreciative of how Broad River has sponsored our truck this year with all of our other sponsors,” Woodson said. “We’ll put this money to good use in Union County.”
Also receiving $1,000 was Trinity Baptist Church’s Channel of Blessings Community Outreach Ministry which distributes food and essential household items to needy families and is currently assisting 600 families a month. It also helps families in crisis situations and provides assistance to the county’s homeless population.
“That will help with our general budget of buying food and supplies,” Rev. Neil Keisler, church pastor and ministry director, said in accepting the donation. “This is the second year we’ve received support from Broad River. We received $2,000 from Broad River previously. We’re very happy to get it because we receive a lot of food donations but we don’t receive lot of financial donations.”
Union Disabilities and Special Needs, which provides support and services to people with special needs and their families, also received $1,000. Executive Director Lou Stackhouse described it as “a blessing to receive this time of year. It is such a generous donation.”
Rev. David Blanton accepted the $1,000 donated to the Union County Baptist Association which he said will use it help those who find themselves in a crisis situation.
“It will go our Crisis Ministry Network which is a weekly program to assist people who are in crisis and are unable to pay their entire utility bill and rent,” Blanton said. “The funds to do that come from free will offerings from our Baptist churches and Broad River Electric Charities has been very generous in the past several years to help support this assistance ministry.”
The $1,500 donated to the Salvation Army in Union County was accepted by Capt. Donnie Marvells said it will be used to help the county’s less fortunate residents.
“We are very thankful to Broad River for thinking of our organization to help those people in this county that are less fortunate,” Marvells said. “We are going to make sure this $1,500 is used to help those people in Union County. While we know that $1,500 is not going to help everybody, it will help those people who need it most.”
Marvells said that in order to qualify for assistance from the Salvation Army those seeking it must first call Dawn Knox at 864-427-9622.
In addition to the $1,500 he was give for the Salvation Army in Union County, Marvells also received $1,500 for the Salvation Army in Spartanburg County.
Editor Charles Warner can be reached at 864-427-1234, ext. 14, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.