LIFE IN APPALACHIA

Many of us are not aware of the poverty that exists within our own country, especially in the region we call Appalachia, running down through the eastern states from southern New York to northern Georgia.

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Within a few hours’ drive for those of us who live in the East, children are born into conditions that resemble life in a third-world country:

  • dilapidated and crowded housing
  • no plumbing or clean running water
  • limited access to public utilities, social services, and medical care
  • substandard schools and education.

Here are some statistics:

According to the 2008 U.S. Census Bureau report, Appalachia is now home to 13.3 million people living in poverty.

While extreme poverty persists in all of Appalachia, the most impoverished areas are in eastern Kentucky, West Virginia, western Virginia, and along the North Carolina/Tennessee border. Central Appalachia is home to 22 of the 26 Appalachian counties with median incomes below 50 percent of the US median income. According to a report by the Ohio Appalachian Center for Higher Education, 1 in 5 Appalachian children live in poverty.

We’re All God’s Children is concerned about the plight of these people and currently works with the Leslie, Knott, Letcher, Perry (LKLP) Community Action Council in Hindman, KY. Chartered in 1966, the LKLP Council is a non-profit organization which seeks to actively and substantially involve all segments of the community in an effort to alleviate the distress of poverty in Kentucky. Some of their efforts include a summer meal program for children providing a healthy nutritious lunch, spousal abuse programs and senior care programs. For more information visit www.lklp.org.

In an effort to help, WAGC is collecting items such as gently used furniture and appliances, and unused home repair products. New school supplies and toiletries are also being accepted for transport by our organization. The LKLP screens applicants and works with us as we distribute donations.

On our first trip in February 2006 we coordinated the delivery of two 48 foot trailers full of donated school supplies such as student desks, bookcases and cafeteria tables to the Knott County Board of Education in Kentucky. This was followed by many more visits with trailers full of donated furniture, appliances and home repair supplies. Over 100 families have been touched by this important ministry. Projects of this magnitude are made possible by the support of our wonderful volunteers. Can we count on you?

Plans now include forming teams for week long visits to work with local organizations in Kentucky to do home repair projects.

SUPPORT US IN APPALACHIA

In July of 2009 we received the unexpected news that we must vacate the premises of our storage facility in Mountville as the owners were interested in upgrading the building and finding new occupants. We delivered our last load of donations in August 2009 and with the loss of our warehouse this program has been temporarily suspended. We have an immediate need for a new location and your help in providing leads for a new warehouse would be greatly appreciated. Specifications for the warehouse include:

  • Approximately 3,000 — 5,000 sq ft
  • Centrally located in Lancaster County
  • Loading dock suitable for tractor trailers
  • Bathroom & running water available nearby
  • Must be available to us at all times as our volunteers generally work nights and weekends

Obviously our funds are very limited and we have no ongoing income. Fundraisers are held to cover costs of fuel and other related expenses. If you know of anyone who would be willing to discuss the situation or help us, even on a temporary basis, please contact us at info@wereallgodschildren.org.

We also ask your continued support in prayer as we look forward to the new blessings God has in store for us.

Donation mailing address: We’re All God’s Children  118 Parklawn Court  Lancaster, PA 17601