This year has been difficult for many and our local non-profit agencies have been working hard to meet the needs of our Barry County residents the best that they can. Each year the Barry County United Way collects a list of “needs” from our local agencies to help them better serve our community. With services adapting to our changing economy and many agencies offering different delivery methods for their programs, this leaves a great need for additional resources, items and volunteer time right now. Barry County is fortunate to have many people in our community who are eager and able to support, volunteer and provide assistance, but it’s not always clear what help is needed.
The “New Year’s Needs” wish list provides a way for individuals to personalize gifts for agencies in our community that serve residents throughout Barry County. While many of the agencies have listed “items” they would like to receive, others are in need of volunteers. Volunteers play a vital role in the work that area agencies do and can make a tremendous difference in the lives of those they assist.
For more information, contact Morgan Johnson at the Barry County United Way Volunteer Center at 269-945-4010. Wish List items can be dropped off at the local agency that is requesting the item or can be brought to the Barry County United Way Volunteer Center at 231 S. Broadway in Hastings for distribution.
The “New Year’s Needs” list follows:
Barry County Commission on Aging – Since 1974, the COA has been helping older adults stay happy, safe, and independent in their own homes, through a variety of affordable home and community based services.
Bingo prizes – personal paper products, cereal, cleaning supplies, candy, chocolate, word search books and lotion.
$10 and $25 VISA cards for gas and grocery purchases
Coffee tables books with large pictures
Record albums that older adults would enjoy
Contact Tammy Pennington, 269-948-4856
Barry County Great Start Collaborative – A partnership of community agencies, business owners, health and human service agencies, educators, child care providers, parents and individuals working together to improve programs and services for families with from prenatal to age 8.
Storage space for boxes of books to be distributed to families and children
Contact Julie McMillen, 269-243-0306
Delton VFW Post 422 – A free place of meeting for veterans and their families (in the Delton area and all of Barry County) to connect not only each other but also VA service officers. They offer a variety of services such as free meals, a therapist on site once per month, free Wi-Fi and more.
New walk in cooler
New roof and/or volunteer to help re-roof the building
Paint and/or volunteers to help paint interior spaces
Gift certificates for printer ink and office supplies
Contact Tess Knobloch, 269-623-2278, 269-217-0437
Family Promise of Barry County – A community response to homelessness in Barry County. In partnership with 12 area churches to provide overnight shelter and case management to reduce and eliminate the barriers to home ownership.
Gas cards for their bus which helps guests get to and from work while at shelter
Barry County Transit passes
Grocery gift cards for shelter
Industrial shelving units for storage
Contact Tonia Swager, 269-953-6189
Family Support Center of Barry County – Their mission is to eliminate and prevent all forms of child abuse and neglect in Barry County.
New upright vacuum
Volunteers – office/administrative, website/data, Spanish interpreter, history/artifact
Contact Linda Maupin, 269-945-5439
Green Gables Haven – Barry County’s domestic violence shelter/program.
Toilet paper, paper towel, Lysol wipes
Personal hygiene items
Contact Christy Durham, 269-804-6021
Habitat for Humanity Restore – A local thrift store where all items sold give back to the organization to continue building homes for families in need.
Gas cards to cover the cost of picking up items for the restore
Gift cards for office/cleaning supplies
Volunteers to clean/organize the restore
Contact Kim Jansens, 269-948-9998
Hastings Public Library – A resource for our community including books, movies, magazines and their “library of things.”
Volunteers/donations to help digitize copies of the Hastings Banner dating back to 1856
Contact Peggy Hemerling, 269-945-4263
The Shack – A totally free clothing outreach available to anyone regardless of income or residency. Run completely on donations and volunteers.
New window blinds (3 windows)
New storm doors installed
Gift cards for printing needs/ink
Gift cards for local coffee sop
New underwear for clients
Contact Kathy Forsyth, 269-207-2515
Thornapple Area Parks & Rec Commission – Provides all people with the opportunity to be active through affordable, safe and healthy recreational activities.
Small used tractor/mower for ball fields
Seamstress to repair zippers/straps on gear bags
New/used garage shelving for equipment storage shed
Contact Emily Dock, 616-450-1757
YMCA of Barry County – Provides youth development, healthy living and social responsibility opportunities for all.
Gas cards for “Y on the Fly” vans
Gloves and hats for kids at winter “Y on the Fly” stops
Volunteers for organizing B. Bus books
Life jackets for campers
Contact Jon Sporer, 269-945-4574