Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Grace Resurrection Community Center Helps Those in Need

by Amy Farmer

The work of Grace Resurrection Community Center began in 1999 with a weekly soup kitchen in a church basement. Today, the organization serves over 1,000 meals a month to Darke County residents and offers a variety of other services to those in need.

Located at 433 E. Water Street in Greenville, Grace Resurrection receives funding from the United Way and accepts monetary, clothing and food donations from individuals and businesses. According to Executive Director Sharon Fellers, “Every donation makes a difference when the need is so great. We try to help as many people as we can with the resources we have.”

With its mission to “provide food for the hungry, drink to the thirsty, clothing for the naked, shelter for the homeless, health care for the indigent sick, and a Christian atmosphere to provide or further a relationship with Christ,” GRCC strives to create an atmosphere in which people feel comfortable enjoying fellowship with each other and ministry from the many volunteers who make the organization work.

On Monday through Thursday, GRCC opens its doors at 10 a.m. for a free soup kitchen served from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Meals are provided and served by volunteers from 18 area churches that accept donations from their parishioners on behalf of the program. “Usually, we serve anywhere from 40 to 70 people each day,” said Fellers.

A food bank is also available on Mondays and Thursdays from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and typically supplies food for 400-500 households each month. The food bank is partially funded by United Way, along with private donations and food items provided by area grocers, businesses, organizations and individuals.

Another popular service is GRCC’s clothing bank, open on Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Clothing, shoes and coats are available free of charge for men, women and children through donations received from private individuals and some clothing manufacturers.

Additionally, GRCC partners with Family Health Services to provide medical fee assistance for qualified individuals, with a goal of “bridging the gap” for individuals who have no insurance or cannot afford their insurance co-payments. GRCC makes referrals to the medical assistance program and generally helps with payment for up to three visits, during which time patients are encouraged to seek other programs such as Medicaid for more permanent assistance.

The newest program, geared toward children, is the Feeding America Back Pack Program. Currently serving 194 children from Ansonia, Greenville, Tri-Village and Versailles schools, this program provides food for children to take home over the weekend to ensure they have healthy food available. Sponsorships of $99 per child provide meals to cover the entire school year.

Because GRCC is a not-for-profit, 501c3 organization, donations are tax deductible. “This time of year is especially difficult for those in need, with the cold winter months contributing to higher utility costs and the need for warmer clothing,” said Fellers. Those interested in contributing food items, monetary donations or clothing can contact Sharon Fellers at 548-2595.

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