Community Resource Services (CRS) celebrated 30 years of service to the community this week in its new location at Beach Park Station Stop 65. Mayor Greg Zilka ceremoniously cut the big red ribbon as he dedicated their new, larger space on the west end of Avon Lake where they continue to provide services to Avon and Avon Lake residents.
The enthusiastic Executive Director Susan Poole explained that CRS began in 1988, created by a small group of volunteers who identified that there were local people struggling to make ends meet. At that time, their main service was providing information, giving referrals to other helpful resources.
Fast forward 30 years, and CRS is now the primary social service agency serving Avon and Avon Lake, providing necessities to low-income households in the area. Besides referrals and information, food assistance is their primary service and the new location on the west side of Avon Lake gives them ample shelving space for storage and food distribution. CRS also provides emergency services for rent and utilities, as well as school supplies and prescription assistance.
“A little help can go a long way,” Susan said. “Sometimes people are trying to choose between food on the table or getting the leaky roof or their car fixed. I encourage people to come talk to us before things get any worse! We may be able to get them back on their feet pretty quickly.”
Kathryn Eyring, Senior Wellness Advocate and host of Aging Gracefully TV recently interviewed Susan Poole. Surprising to many, there were 155 senior households in the area in need of help just last year. Susan Poole explained, “Seniors have especially-challenging circumstances, because they’re on a fixed income. They’re not just between jobs or going back to school, like some of our other customers. Typically, the seniors have carefully budgeted their resources, when suddenly they find themselves in a crisis because they need unexpected auto repairs, a roof fixed, or even a furnace replacement.” Her full episode/interview can be viewed at www.AgingGracefully.TV, where she details more of the current local needs.
Community Resource Services wants the public to know that they carefully protect their client information, keeping strict confidentiality, and they hope that anyone who needs help will not be afraid to come forward.
Moving into the cooler months of the year, CRS appreciates any public donations of hearty soups, pasta sauce, side dishes like rice or pasta, canned vegetables, peanut butter and jelly, as well as paper products that will be needed all year long. Please check expiration dates on food prior to donating.