Editorial: Faith in Action proves value to community

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 16, 2005

With just a little over a year under its belt, Faith in Action of Freeborn County has already proven its worth.

Faith in Action of Freeborn County recruited more than 35 volunteers who were involved directly with a care receiver in the community. The program assisted more than 100 care receivers in the community. Also, more volunteers assisted in the office with mailings, fundraising, strategic planning, public relations and as members of the Faith in Action advisory board.

While Faith in Action is not affiliated with any one religion, its programs are built on the value that all religions have in common: a mandate to do good works. Program characteristics include interfaith, volunteer, long-term health needs, caregiving and home-based.

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It’s the whole idea of neighbor helping neighbor, something our society was built on, and in an age of continuing governmental cuts, something we’ll have to get back to, with more Americans living longer lives. With those longer lives are the challenges of caring for family members and

neighbors with arthritis, diabetes, cancer, Alzheimer’s or other long-term health conditions, not to mention the need for companionship.

Volunteers help people remain independent for as long as possible through friendly visiting, respite care, light housekeeping, yardwork, telephone reassurance and help with shopping and errands.

In its first year, the program concentrated on volunteer recruitment and development and public relations. Now, moving into the second year, the need to raise funds to be self sufficient becomes the focus.

As a community, we can see the value of Faith in Action and society’s increasing use of this and similar programs. We urge the community to continue to support the program not only through financial contributions, but also by referring people who may need help to the program or by becoming a volunteer.

Programs like Faith in Action not only improve the quality of life of those receiving the care, but also of those giving it.