The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

News

March 17, 2013

Lewisburg church sponsors summit on poverty

LEWISBURG —  More than 50 people came to Beaver Memorial United Methodist Church’s poverty summit on Sunday to devise ways to help the needy.

“We’ve been working on this for almost nine months,” said Kerry Shirk, a member of the church’s social concerns team.

“This event is to educate people of the needs in the area” and tell them what they can do to help, Shirk said.

A common misconception, said team member Cliff Brown, is that poverty is brought about by someone’s personal failings or lack of character. It can happen to anyone, and can stem from being laid off, having to pay high medical bills or other setbacks, he said.

“Almost everyone lives paycheck to paycheck these days,” Brown said.

Missing one paycheck can be the difference between making a house payment or not, he added.

According to the most recent U.S. Census, 12 percent of Union County’s citizens are living below the poverty line. The numbers for neighboring counties are 11.2 percent for Snyder County, 13.7 percent for Northumberland County and 10.4 percent for Montour County. The census set the 2012 poverty level at $15,374 for two people and $23,681 for a family of four.

Keynote speakers at the summit were Seneca Foote, retired CEO of Lewisburg’s Albright Care Services, Christy Zeigler, assistant director of Sunbury’s Haven Ministries, and Kathy Storm, director of the Union County Food Bank.

Foote’s volunteer group, Dinner by the River, regularly offers meals at area churches. Dinner by the River doesn’t ask about a family’s income level, which helps put some attendees more at ease, he said. Foote’s group is always looking for volunteers to help prepare and serve meals.

Haven Ministries provides temporary rooms for families. It has eight rooms with multiple beds: five for families, a dormitory for women and a dormitory for men. The eighth room was another family room, but it is being converted into a second men’s dorm because of the high number of men in the area seeking shelter.

Storm’s food bank provides for needy families in eastern Union County and regularly receives donations and support from area farmers and vendors.

“The food bank is blessed to be a part of Lewisburg,” Storm said. “Our goal is simply that no one in eastern Union County goes to bed hungry or underclothed.”

Attending the event were the directors and organizers of several area charities devoted to helping needy families.

“This community is so good at responding to needs,” said Andrea Tufo, director of Lewisburg’s Donald Heeter Community Center, which aids in food distribution and clothing drives for local families.“When I look around the room, I see so many people who are helpful and responsive.”

n Email questions or comments to rstoneback@dailyitem.com.

1
Text Only
News
  • $23 million sweep under way

    After years of finger-pointing and blame, Northumberland County officials have launched an initiative to try to collect $22.8 million in unpaid fines and restitution from what might be 14,000 cases.

    July 24, 2014

  • eyebrows.jpg Coming Sunday: Browsing for brows

    As makeup sales soar, four tips to make your eyebrows raise others'. Coming Sunday

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mazzeo a finalist for Middletown post

    Former Sunbury police chief Steve Mazzeo is one of three finalists for the same position in a borough about 65 miles away.

    July 24, 2014

  • rundown25zope.jpg Blighted block going bye-bye in Atlas

    Nearly an entire township block in Atlas will be torn down in Mount Carmel Township, utilizing funds from Northumberland County and its Housing Authority in an effort to fight blight. Half of this block is proposed to be developed as low-income senior living units.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • 1WEATHER.jpg Deadly storm strikes Virginia campground

    A fierce storm packing powerful winds and rain toppled trees and flipped campers Thursday at a Virginia campground this morning, killing at least two people and sending at least 20 more to hospitals, officials said.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Official: Air Algerie flight ’probably crashed’

    An Air Algerie flight carrying 116 people from Burkina Faso to Algeria’s capital disappeared from radar early Thursday over northern Mali and “probably crashed,” according to the plane’s owner and government officials in France and Burkina Faso.

    July 24, 2014

  • 1gaza25.jpg Israeli fire hits UN facility in Gaza, killing 15

    Israeli tank shells hit a compound housing a U.N. school in the northern Gaza Strip on Thursday, killing at least 15 people and wounding dozens who were seeking shelter from fierce clashes on the streets outside.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • 1execution.jpg How Arizona, Ohio, Oklahoma, executions went awry

    Since the start of the year, executions in Ohio, Oklahoma and Arizona have gone awry, with inmates gasping for breath as lethal drugs coursed through their bodies.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Today's Editorial: One more job appears at risk

    July 24, 2014

  • Rabbi Conflict in Israel grounds Sunbury rabbi

    TEL AVIV, Israel — While the Israelis and Hamas traded rocket and missile strikes for a 16th day, Rabbi Nina Mandel is struggling to find her way back to Sunbury after the FAA on Wednesday announced that it would extend its ban on travel at Ben-Gurion International Airport for another 24 hours.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

The Daily Marquee
Video
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.