Red Cross grateful for community volunteers
In the past month, we have faced destruction and hardship from some of the most severe weather our community has ever seen. It is times like this that we see our community truly come together, united in our efforts to help our neighbors. Your American Red Cross is proud to have been a part of that, working with community partners to provide shelter to those displaced by the storms. The Red Cross is truly appreciative of our compassionate and tireless volunteers.
To efficiently meet the needs of the 268 displaced clients from various areas within our community, we enlisted the aid of 81 volunteers to manage our disaster relief operation. Of the volunteers who humbly gave of their time and service to the shelter, 71 were Red Cross disaster-certified volunteers and 10 were spontaneous community volunteers who even in the face of their own struggle came forward to serve the greater need in the community.
Whether they were welcoming clients into the shelter or serving them hot meals at dinner time, their dedicated service and enduring hope demonstrated during the disaster relief mission will not soon be forgotten.
We would like to extend our gratitude to all who were involved in creating a successful shelter to house the many displaced disaster victims in our community. In addition to our volunteers, the staff and congregation of the First Assembly of God Church opened their doors and their hearts to shelter anyone who needed a safe place.
The American Red Cross receives no financial support from the government and is only able to provide shelters through the generosity of the American public, including all those who made financial donations to assist with local relief efforts. It costs more than $1,000 every day to operate a shelter where those affected by disaster can seek safety, comfort, nourishment and help getting back on the road to recovery. For this disaster, local donors responded contributing over $1,000 in support of these efforts.
In addition, local businesses also contributed well over $5,000 worth of materials, including food, serving supplies and more. Even with those generous donations, the Red Cross of Northeast Indiana spent more than $7,000 to operate the shelter after these storms. You can help today by donating or becoming a volunteer. Please call 484-9336 or visit redcross.org to learn more.
With the unwavering commitment of volunteers, donors and local partners including Indiana Michigan Power, the city of Fort Wayne and Allen County Emergency Management Agency, the American Red Cross strives to prevent and alleviate human suffering in the face of emergencies. It is times like this that our community shows its true colors – those of concern, care and action and makes us all proud to call northeast Indiana home.
Katherine MacAulay, chief operations officer, American Red Cross of Northeast Indiana
City needs to do better job with our money
The city should do what consumers do when their expenses are higher than their income — cut their expenses. Better yet, don’t spend money based on future expectations.
We can’t go to an employer and force them to pay us more so we can spend more. So why should the city be any different? You work for the public. City Controller Pat Roller says residents expect certain services, what are they willing to pay for? City officials should compile a list of what residents pay for and let them decide if they want to continue doing so. Those who are willing to pay may continue that service and pay for it and the rest should be allowed to opt out.
The nation has been in the worst recession since the Great Depression for three or more years. Unemployment has remained high causing many people to lose their homes. Electric and water rates are increasing dramatically. Property tax caps were implemented in 2010. City officials should have not waited for two years to be concerned about this problem. Raising local income tax should be the last resort. We aren’t there yet.
Perhaps the city should invest more time being frugal with spending than building unneeded memorial bridges and straightening roadways.
Laura J. Smyser
As we watch the Olympics tonight, a few tears of joy come to our eyes as we realize that there were men and women out there who are helping make a difference in kids’ lives by becoming coaches so they can share their knowledge and experience of sports in hopes of preparing them for the Olympics, the pros or just life.
We have many coaches in our area who fit this description, but one group truly excels in their quest to make champions of the young men entrusted to them by parents and grandparents. The Windows, Doors & More team coaches, Derek Wilson, Dave Miller and Spencer Sterling, led by manager Kevin Hunter, have truly been a standout as they led their team to the city championships two years in a row.
After the season, another team is formed to compete in the Junior All-Star Tournament of Indiana. The best players were picked from the teams within the St. Joe Division for this team. Coaches Matt Mertes, Gregg Piatt and manager Hunter trained them to become one of the leanest, meanest, baseball playing machines in Indiana, all the while building character and maintaining good sportsmanship.
These young men h
ad heart, and now they have the memory of triumph because volunteer coaches cared enough to help them make their dreams become reality.
Jerry and Linda Vanadeveer