Helping Them, Help You

This is from a poverty series that aired on WBKO.  You can watch the entire story at www.wbko.com.

Leading up to this year’s United Way Day of Caring, we’ve taken you inside different organizations in the community.

These groups are helping those who may be suffering from poverty for the first time or have been living with it through generations.

Chances are we all know someone living in poverty.

We can see it in schools, with our elderly and it may be our next door neighbor.

It’s a struggle millions of Americans go through, and poverty may not always be visible with the naked eye.

In Kentucky, if poverty were a county, its population of 684,000 would be more than every county in the state except Jefferson County, which has just over 700,000 people.

In the United States, a single parent family with two kids making 19,000 dollars or less is considered poor.

In schools, the poverty level is apparent to educators.

Joe Tinius, Bowling Green Independent School’s Superintendent, says he sees it everyday, “good families, good people who work hard, but have struggled to get out of the situation that they’re in.”

Rhondell Miller is the director at Hotel Inc., she also sees poverty first hand, “I see moms with young kids who have left abusive situations and are trying to move into a safer environment. Or, people with addiction issues that are trying to get help and the support they need.”

The sole purpose for dozens of organizations in South Central Kentucky is to help those struggling, even when they’re sometimes struggling as an organization.

The Hospitality House helps the elderly in Bowling Green, Lori Richey, the elderly and disabled service coordinator says sometimes they struggle, “our funding was cut, so we rely solely on donations from the community.”

United Way’s day of caring on July 25th is aimed at helping some of these organizations.

In Glasgow the Barren River Area Safe space is getting a much needed makeover.

“We have people coming in here who are looking for help,” says Ryan Braber with BRASS,”and it’s just kind of dark and dreary we need to brighten it up a bit.”

Volunteers from BB&T Bank are painting the walls and giving the place a new decor, along with the Day of Caring, this project is part of BB&T’s Lighthouse Project, where they not only fund the renovations but do the labor.

In Allen County, the Family Resource Centers at the different schools provide food, clothing and other services to help their children that are struggling.

On the Day of Caring, a back to school bash will be held, plus the Fred Hale Ballpark is getting a little sprucing.

Right here in Warren County, North Warren Elementary School desperately needs a new track.

And while they have the volunteers, they’re still hoping for someone to donate the supplies.

CASA, Court Appointed Special Advocates, are needing some new window treatments for their new location in downtown Bowling Green.

And while the issue of poverty cant be fixed overnight, every little bit counts to help those who sometimes can’t help themselves.

“It’s not always a choice, and for some people, yes it is a choice and they just choose to live a very different lifestyle than maybe we as Americans would want them to live. But for many, it is just a day-to-day battle to preserve and keep trudging ahead and know that one day a better day it coming,” says Miller.

So you can see all the help people in this community need, but also the help the organizations helping them need, too.

That’s what the United Way’s Day of Caring is all about.

These were just a few of the many projects happening next week.

To volunteer or get involved visit www.unitedwaydayofcaring.com .

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