NORTH LIMA-The Big Reach Center of Hope was recently presented with a check for $2,000 from the Home Savings Charitable Foundation to help defray the costs of bookbags for the group's eighth annual Back-to-School Initiative.
According its Director Scott Lewis, the Big Reach Center of Hope's mission is to provide the resources and opportunities necessary to help low income and underserved individuals and families in the Mahoning Valley and surrounding communities move toward self-sufficiency through education and training.
"Our purpose is to provide them with hope by meeting both tangible and spiritual needs and recognizing the dignity and beauty of every person," he said.
Since 2004, The Big Reach Back to School program has offered children the opportunity to receive book bags, school supplies and new clothes to help prepare them to go back to school.
According to Lewis, families attending this event can also receive food, used clothing, fresh produce, haircuts and free spinal checks.
"We also provide an information tent that consists of organizations and their representatives from the valley to talk to families and provide them with knowledge of assistance available to them," he added.
The group reached out to over 1,200 low-income children last year and they anticipate that this year will bring an even greater need than usual.
"We have been blessed over the past five years to have the support of the Home Savings Charitable Foundation," he said. "This generous donation will help us to meet the challenges of the economy on children and their families in the Mahoning Valley and its surrounding communities."
Since 1998, the Home Savings Charitable Foundation has provided nearly $11 million of support to all communities served by Home Savings, a local community bank with offices throughout northern Ohio and western Pennsylvania. "We are really proud to be able to support Big Reach in its diligent efforts to assist children in our communities," said Darlene Pavlock, executive director, Home Savings Charitable Foundation. For more information visit www/bigreachministries.org.