Twenty brightly decorated boxes arrived at OUR Home recently, gifts from ninth graders in Immaculate Conception’s religion classes. The students had filled the boxes with fun summer things, and they asked OUR Home to see that the boxes get to younger boys and girls who would enjoy them. According to teacher Liza Bonvillian, her class was excited about this project which will share joy with other kids.
Each year, the Sisters of the Precious Blood in Dayton distribute grants from the congregation’s Maria Anna Brunner Grant Fund “for projects designed to improve the social-economic condition of those suffering from poverty and to empower them to take their place in Church and in society.” The Direct Services program at OUR Home was awarded a grant of $11,000 to be used during the 2016-2017 year. The funds will be used to provide financial assistance for clients and for the operation of the program.
OUR Home is pleased to partner with the Sisters of the Precious Blood in serving those in need in Mercer County. Their support of our work continues the support that the Sisters have given to Mercer County families since the congregation first settled in Ohio in the 1840s.
In June, OUR Home received a $600 grant from the Catholic Social Action office. The grant was made on the recommendation of the Catholic parish leaders in the St. Marys Deanery, who chose OUR Home “as an effective means to alleviate poverty and hunger in their local neighborhoods.”
The funds for Catholic Social Action grants are from the annual Rice Bowl program of the Catholic Relief Services, which began forty years ago as a response to famine in Africa. Twenty-five percent of the proceeds are awarded to agencies such as OUR Home which provide essential services to those in need.
OUR Home uses these funds, along with other donations, for our Direct Services program to offer individuals food, personal care items, and emergency financial assistance and referrals. In the past year, we have assisted the people of Mercer County in over 3800 instances.
We are currently accepting applications for School Supply Assistance. You can apply at OUR Home at 117 W Fayette Street in Celina. OUR Home will accept applications Monday through Thursday, 8:30-12:00 and 1:00-4:30, from July 5th until August 4th.
Donations are needed to make this program a success, and can be brought to OUR Home through August 11th. Most needed are book bags, solid color pocket folders, glue bottles or sticks, Crayola Markers, colored pencils, 24 count crayons, zipper pencil pouches, #2 pencils (not mechanical), erasers, tissues and highlighters. Monetary donations are also welcome.
OUR Home is able to assist people who need help paying for prescriptions or other medical expenses, thanks to our longtime partnership with the Mercer County Society for Crippled Children. Their funds, which are held at the Mercer County Civic Foundation, are distributed to those who need them through OUR Home’s Direct Services program.
We are grateful to the Society for Crippled Children and to the Civic Foundation for entrusting OUR Home with this source of support for the community’s needs.
During Lent, the Religious Education classes at Immaculate Conception showed their love and concern for the poor among us by contributing to a collection for OUR Home. On May 5, they presented a check for $645.39 to Kathy Mescher, who thanked them on behalf of those whose lives will be impacted by their generosity.
The Sexual Assault HelpLine is up and running. If you or anyone you know needs someone to talk to, help is available. Call the Statewide HelpLine at 1-844-OHIO-HELP (6446-4357). Now open 24/7 for confidential support to all survivors of sexual assault. This HelpLine connects to all existing services and increases access to all Ohioans, particularly in communities without 24/7 hotline support.
Family Crisis Network is in the beginning stages of incorporating our services to assist victims of Sexual Assault. In the meantime, our staff hopes that this Statewide HelpLine can serve as an additional resource. Check out the video below to learn additional information.
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. We all can play a part in building community and building hope. This month and throughout the year, Our Home Family Resource Center encourages all individuals and organizations to play a role in making Mercer County a better place for children and families. By ensuring that parents have the knowledge, skills, and resources they need to care for their children, we can help prevent child abuse and neglect by making meaningful connections with children, youth and families in our communities. Research shows that protective factors are present in healthy families. Promoting these factors is among the most effective ways to reduce the risk of child abuse and neglect. They are:
- Nurturing and attachment
- Knowledge of parenting and of child and youth development
- Parental resilience
- Social connections
- Concrete supports for parents
- Social and emotional competence of children
April is a time to celebrate the important role that communities play in protecting children and strengthening families. Everyone’s participation is critical. Focusing on ways to connect with families is the best thing our community can do to strengthen families and prevent child abuse and neglect.