RadioRotary Co-host Jonah Triebwasser interviewed Marietta Allen about her current Outreach program at St. Mary’s Parish in Newburgh. Newburgh suffers from high poverty and crime rates. Each of the four Roman Catholic churches has a program to help alleviate the city’s problems. Among the components of the St. Mary’s Outreach are the provision of emergency food and toiletries for immediate needs; a program that delivers food and other supplies to homebound veterans; a program to provide food and other aid to the elderly in their homes; as well as several similar outreaches. Perhaps the most dramatic aid comes with Giving Day, every 3rd Friday of the month. Those in need can visit a large area filled with tables of food—fresh, meat, and canned; supplies and toys for children; clothing; furniture; and other items not covered by food stamps. Giving Day also features a nurse for minor medical needs, legal services, and representatives of community departments.
Casey MacDonald, who survived her own bout with cancer nearly 20 years ago only to confront cancers that attacked her husband, father, and best friend, has devoted her life to helping others navigate their way through the medical, financial, and lifestyle challenges of the disease. She founded The Hudson Valley Cancer Resource Center, which—with the help of many volunteers—serves nine counties in the Hudson Valley. They provide a kit of information for those newly diagnosed with the disease, and then offer information on available financial assistance, prescription help, lodging and transportation, and legal and insurance counseling. This RadioRotary interview describes these services and more, as well as telling Ms. MacDonald’s own cancer stories.
Elizabeth Spira, the Chief Executive Officer of the Community Action Partnership of Dutchess County describes how this legacy program of the War on Poverty has for 50 years provided financial, energy, pharmaceutical, and food assistance to those in need. Similar agencies exist in every country in New York State. Some of the programs that the Dutchess agency maintains include “Dress for Success,” a program that provides suitable clothing to women applying for jobs, and the “Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP),” which provides help with financial counseling, youth mentoring, and emergency preparedness.
Pawling Rotary President, Patty Moore, who is the Executive Director of the Pauling Resource Center, discusses the various forms of support that the Center provides for the community: transportation to medical appointments, a food pantry, an extensive medical loan supply with equipment such as hospital beds, information and referrals to other agencies that can provide what the Center cannot, as well as occasional services such as gift baskets at holidays. An important part of the interview discusses the surprising number of people in all communities, even those that seem well off, who are in various stages of need in today’s difficult economic environment. Ms. Moore tells many heartfelt stories about how the Center’s more than 75 volunteers have helped folks in need over the years.
Pawling Resource Center