Yesterday was Giving Tuesday: Ohio Valley organizations rely on community support

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WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) – We’ve done the shopping, but before we switch to wrapping those gifts let’s talk about giving. 

Yesterday was Giving Tuesday, a day to remind us that amid the holiday chaos should come some generosity. There are many deserving organizations across the Ohio Valley where your dollars will help people in need.  

Knowing how much support we have from the Ohio Valley is truly overwhelming. There are so many days that just out of the blue we’ll get these generous donations that were unsolicited just because at some point in a person’s life Easterseals has played an important part and they’ve remembered us and given back when they were able.

Allison O’Konski, Community Relations Director, Easterseals

For more than 80 years, Easterseals has been an area staple providing rehabilitative medical care and pediatric therapy that changes lives. 

It’s thanks to the community’s generosity because no one’s turned away if they can’t afford care. Gifts for Giving Tuesday, help to fill those funding gaps. 

To see the way that kids are able to transform and grow from the time they start here to the time that they leave, it’s really amazing. Our staff is so passionate about what they do and that makes a difference. They genuinely care about their families and I think that that really comes through in the services they provide.

Allison O’Konski, Community Relations Director, Easterseals

Another group where you’ll find passionate people dedicated to those they serve is Helping Heroes, which is where veterans and their familis in need turn.

While the V.A. does provide some funding, Helping Heroes explained that it is restrictive. That means not all veterans meet the criteria, but they don’t like to turn them away.

We really try to include the whole family in that service and Christmas is a wonderful time to do that. We even have some veterans that aren’t in our V.A. national programs that will call for assistance and we don’t like to turn anyone away, so if we can help, we always like to help.

R.J. Konkoleski, Executive Director, Helping Heroes

They provide a homeless shelter, food pantry and much more helping veterans transition into their own homes. 

This time of year there are more heroes who rely on these programs.

As we move into winter, the veterans we’re serving, some of them are literally homeless. They may be staying in the camps. This is the time of year they need the most help because the weather is turning cold so we typically see an increase in the number of veterans coming to us.

R.J. Konkoleski, Executive Director, Helping Heroes

No matter which organization you can support across the Ohio Valley, know that your contribution matters. 

We appreciate the community thinking of us.

Allison O’Konski, Community Relations Director, Easterseals

If you’d like to donate to Easterseals to support their mission, click here. You can also visit the Easterseals Facebook page by clicking here to give because the social media company is matching some donations as part of Giving Tuesday.

If you’d like to mail a contribution, send it to Easterseals at 1305 National Road in Wheeling.

To support Helping Heroes, click here. You can also call 304-232-0114 if you’d like to bring donations of the non-monetary variety for the food pantry.

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