| Sep 11, 2008

Sept 11, 2008 - Rural Visions gets the message out

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Feature Article - September 11, 2008 Rural VISIONS Gets the message out earlyBy Julie DrukerJillian Manning, the family coordinator of CFCSC at Rural Visions in Sydenham is determined to get the message out early to families in North, Central, and South Frontenac who can benefit from the wealth of programs that are being offered this year.

Manning has held the position as family coordinator since May 2005 and explains “We know there are people out there who need these services and we worry that if these programs are not utilized that they may be discontinued.”

The programs are designed to help families with children and an income of less than $29,590, seniors, and those with physical disabilities who may find themselves in need, especially around the holiday season.

Manning adds, “It’s very important heading into the holiday season that we put the message out early so that we can get a clear idea of what is most needed.”

The list of services available at Rural VISIONS is extensive. Transportation services are available to those in need of rides and cost $5 - $10 depending on the length of the trip and number of stops made. Volunteer drivers are screened by the agency and rides should be booked in advance whenever possible.

The Food Security Program is run like a food bank and offers monthly boxes of non-perishable food items, milk vouchers, baby formula and diapers for infants. Rural VISIONS offers this program in connection with the Loughborough Christmas and Emergency Relief Fund.

Food and cash donations are accepted at Rural VISIONS. Anyone interested in making perishable food donations should call Rural VISIONS prior to dropping fresh foods off.

Financial Assistance is available to low income families, seniors and those with physical disabilities in South Frontenac through the Caring Community Fund in partnership with the Community Caring Foundation in Hartington and can assist those in need of payments for first and last month’s rent, arrears in rent, taxes, mortgage, hydro and oil payments. Funds are also available for certain home upgrades and replacements.

A new program this year is the Child and Youth Assistance Fund, designed to help youth and teenage needs for recreation programs and back-to-school necessities that are currently not covered by other existing programs. This program is available to residents of South Frontenac only.

The Good Food Box Program offers the purchase of fresh fruit and vegetables at wholesale prices in various quantities. Orders are due the second Thursday of every month. Host sites include Prince Charles School and the Trinity United Church in Verona, Rural VISIONS in Sydenham, Leonard’s Fuels in Hartington and 4530 Noble Lane in Battersea.

Various programs are available around the holiday season through the Salvation Army and include Christmas hampers, which offer dinners, toys and snow suits.

Christmas Angels is a program put on by St. Paul’s Church in Harrowsmith and Trinity United Church in Verona where specific children’s needs are written on tree ornaments. The ornaments are then chosen and supplied by parishioners at the church. Anyone requiring further details about certain programs and eligibility requirements can check the Rural VISIONS website at www.ruralvisionscentre.org.

Anyone wishing to sponsor a family or make a donation is encouraged to call Rural VISIONS as well.

All program applications are available in Sydenham at the Rural VISIONS Centre located at 4419 George Street.

Jillian welcomes any queries regarding any other needs that are not covered by these programs and will happily make available any information and contacts that can help to have them met. All calls to the Rural Visions Centre are confidential. For further information, call Jillian Manning at Rural VISIONS at 613-376-6477 or toll free:1-800-763-9610.

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