Submitted By: Lehigh Community Services
We’re around the corner from our one year anniversary of IAN. Let’s plan ahead and continue to collaborate together to meet our community’s needs. The pandemic and IAN brought agencies together as never before. While we couldn’t solve everyone’s issues, together we helped to make things better here in Lehigh Acres. A hard lesson was learned by all of us, share resources, prioritize the most important and critical problems, work together to make it happen showing unity to our community. For example, last week we received a monumental amount of supplies from San Carlos Fired Department. The L.A. Fire Dept., & Cape Coral Fire Dept. joined in the delivery, unloading, and shelving the supplies. LCS shared the bounty with the Salvation Army, Christ at the Crossroads, New Life, & Servants of Christ/Rise Church. Many hands make light work and it took all of us working together to distribute those supplies. Our pantry clients were happy campers to receive a case of toilet paper instead of a couple of rolls! Our homeless clients got small coolers, other agencies got hand sanitizer, and masks. Those supplies were left over from the IAN distribution. Project collaboration results in serving more clients.
Did you know that LCS has served a total of 30,563 Lehigh residents through July 31, 2023? What will the next few months bring? We do what we do with a passion. But it takes a small army: staff, volunteers, administration, and funding to accommodate the needs. Funds are used for various projects. Such as, our upcoming holiday happenings. Holiday food baskets, Senior Christmas Party, bus passes, gas cards, emergency help, etc. Because, just like you, we have utility bills, daily expenses, gasoline (yikes!) emergency repairs, & payroll, etc. We proudly serve as the United Way House for Lehigh Acres, allowing us a monthly donation but we have to stretch it to the limit! It’s no secret we hold fundraisers during the year to make our budget. For example, our next fundraiser is our golf scramble September 16, at River Hall Golf Club. LCS needs, sponsors, teams, raffle baskets, and volunteers to make this event successful. Will you play a part in this event with us?
Another fundraiser was our Rain Barrel painting project, a collaboration with FGUA, and the Senior Center raising funds to help pay Senior’s water bills. It was a fun, productive event with professional & amateur artist displaying their talents. Lehigh Acres has a wealth of resourceful people. Our third annual rain barrel painting project will be April 2024.
In January, our Duck Race at “Wings Over Water” collaboration with LAMSID at Harns Marsh was fun and prosperous for our agency & participants. Harns Marsh is a beautiful gem and valuable resource in our community. In March, we hold our St. Patrick’s Day corn beef & cabbage dinner – a delicious, & delightful evening with entertainment.
We also invest time and resources in our homeless population. Our wish list for our homeless are phone chargers, and tools to repair their bicycles. Consider donating these supplies, if you please? We all know that Lehigh Acres is in desperate need of a homeless shelter. Can you help? They need a place to shower and wash their clothes, because they’re unable to travel to Fort Myers for the resources there. One of our biggest needs is pet food for our clients. Many folks need pet food for their animals. And you know how important that is if you love pets!
Your donations make a difference. Because of you, we are able to provide: references to available resources, food, hygiene kits, bus passes, gas cards, literacy classes, Sign language classes, Senior Boxes, bread & sweets, food stamp, Medicaid, & financial appointment. Free income tax preparation. All are subject to availability, of course. Another did you know- We’ve had over a MILLION dollars returned to this community for the past 9 years!
Collaboration not duplication is key. The non-profit arena is growing and expanding to meet the needs of our exploding population. LCS strives to be prepared, & pivot when necessary to meet challenges, share resources, using our time, talents, and treasures wisely to provide the best we possibly can for our residents. LCS mission is to provide emergency services to residents of the community while promoting self-sufficiency. Please contact our office for more information 239-369-5818 or www.lehighcommunityservices.com Thank you for your support of LCS!