Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Getting to Know Our Summer Interns

HSP is excited to have two new summer interns on board!

Michelle Clements, who will be a senior at Notre Dame in the fall, and Alaina Pfeifer, who will be a junior at the University of Iowa, started as interns last week.

Michelle is double-majoring in Sociology and Spanish and is interested in becoming a social worker in the Chicago area after graduation. She is interested in seeing the behind-the-scenes, vital administrative work that makes the amazing end results of the projects possible. Michelle is working on referrals for seniors and is assisting with coordinating inventory for the Feed the Kids project.

“I like how HSP focuses on both seniors and children because they’re two very important groups. I’ve worked with children before, but I don’t have much experience with seniors,” Michelle explained. As a social worker, she’ll need to choose the demographic she wants to work with, so she’s eager to learn more about seniors and their needs.

Alaina is double-majoring in Journalism & Mass Communication and Spanish. She is interested in public relations and marketing in the Chicago area. At HSP, she hopes to gain experience in the field of communications and public relations. She is working with Paul, our Community Outreach Coordinator, to create speaker boards. The boards are presented at our speaking events at various community organizations. At these speaking dates, community organizations hear about HSP, what we do, and how they can help with sponsorships and donations. These boards are an important tool to provide information about HSP’s programs and impact. She’ll also be helping with our summer programs: Feed the Kids, Vacation Bible School connections, and Back to School supplies.

When asked what drew her to HSP, Alaina said, “I think HSP is a really cool organization. I respect what they do and the help they provide for people that need it.”

Both Alaina and Michelle will be with us through August. We’re excited to see them grow!

Donate a Brick!

One brick can make a huge difference in the lives of many people.

How? If you donate a brick to HSP, the funds will go toward the expansion of our warehouse. This expansion will enable us to better serve more impoverished children, seniors, and families in DuPage and Kane counties.

Each brick costs $500 and can be engraved with names or short phrases. The brick will be added to our Service Walk that leads to the front door of HSP’s center.

Donate a brick today and help those that really need it!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Do a Good Turn Daily

A local Daisy Troop came into HSP on Monday to earn their community support badge. Each young scout generously brought in their own food donation for HSP. The Daisies took a tour of our facility and learned about how our organization functions.

Their scout slogan is “do a good turn daily” and helping us was one of the ways they showed their passion for good deeds.

This Daisy Troop had so much fun that they decided that they will be helping us in the future! We cannot thank these girls enough for their donations and we look forward to seeing them again soon!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Man With a Plan

Yesterday, we got a visit from Mark Cahill of Hunter Douglas. Mark brought us a donation of various non-perishable foods for Feed the Kids and a cash donation!

Mark told us his story about how he came to be involved with HSP. His wife teaches at a school that has helped HSP in the past. He learned about HSP from his wife and wanted to get Hunter Douglas involved.

Mark saw an opportunity with their training seminars. People from all over the country come for these training seminars, once a month. In the past, there was always an entrance fee for the seminar. Mark decided he wanted to change this to something that would benefit the community. He called us up, asked what we needed, and made that the new entrance fee!

This month, it was non-perishable foods for Feed the Kids, but he’ll touch base with us each month to find out what we need!

We are so grateful for this generous gesture and look forward to working with Mark and Hunter Douglas in the future.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

New Friends

Here at HSP, it is our mission to take those in need under our wing. This week, those in need have wings!

We have had a couple geese living on our property for a while now, but recently, we got some new additions!

When we drove in Monday morning, we found the family had grown. Several adorable baby geese filled our lawn.

Sharon, our Administrative Assistant (and official feeder of HSP geese), happily fed the hungry family out front.

We hope our cute little companions stick around. They brighten every morning!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Delivery Day!

Saturday was Delivery Day for our Senior Citizen Project. 120 seniors in need received 90 pound boxes of 7 fresh fruits, 8 fresh vegetables, 7 frozen meats, fresh bread, non-perishables, paper products, personal care items, and Secret Pal gifts.

This month, we were also able to deliver many microwaves and vacuum cleaners to seniors that needed them.

This was the first Delivery Day experience for Sharon, our Administrative Assistant. “I was amazed by the dedication of the volunteers and drivers,” she said, “And I was tremendously impressed by how well-organized the operation was. Everything went smoothly and efficiently.”

11 volunteers loaded the delivery vehicles for the volunteer drivers. The drivers covered 55 routes and finished deliveries by noon!

The dedication and generosity of our volunteers and of Sarah, the project coordinator, is truly incredible. We want to thank everyone who made yet another successful delivery day possible!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Pleasantdale Middle School students "Stamp Out Hunger"

Ten 8th grade students from Pleasantdale Middle School in Burr Ridge helped “Stamp Out Hunger” by sorting non-perishable foods for our Feed the Kids Project. This program provides a total of 750 lbs of food during the summer months to families of school-age children who qualify for free or reduced-cost lunch and breakfast programs during the school year. Recent studies show that when school is out these children often go hungry since their financially stressed families are not able to give them adequate nutrition. Only 16% of these children are able participate in a federally funded summertime food program. Our Feed the Kids Project fills that nutrition gap and enables these needy children to return to school healthy and ready to learn.

The food they sorted was gathered by the postal workers' annual “Stamp Out Hunger” food drive.

Our thanks to the Pleasantdale Middle School student volunteers and the two staff members who accompanied them for helping make summertime a lot more enjoyable for these deserving families in the Feed the Kids program.

Birthday Party!

Carol Stream Women’s Club is a proud sponsor of one of the seniors in our Senior Citizen Project. They have been sponsoring their senior, Mary, for ­­­­6 years.

This year, they decided to make Mary’s birthday extra special. Rather than just send presents, as they always have, they decided to throw her a party!

Mary’s ­73rd birthday party was complete with decorations, cake, and many happy attendees!

Mary’s beautifully wrapped birthday gifts will be brought to her door, today. Thanks, Carol Stream Women’s Club, for making Mary feel remembered and cared for on her birthday.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

US Cellular Lends a Helping Hand

Today, over 30 volunteers came from US Cellular to give us a hand in the warehouse. The warehouse was running like a well-oiled machine!

Many of the volunteers are busily working away at sorting the food we received from Stamp Out Hunger, last week. The other volunteers are dividing the sorted food into variety boxes. Today they’ll make 100 variety boxes for our Feed the Kids Project.

Feed the Kids provides groceries for the low-income families of the children in our Children’s Birthday Project. The project ensures they’re able to eat nutritiously during the summer, since they cannot receive school lunches during this time. Each family receives at least four 25 lb. boxes of non-perishables, a variety of fresh breads, 7 varieties of frozen meat, 9 varieties of fresh fruits, 9 varieties of fresh vegetables, and snacks tailored to kids’ tastes, totaling 250 lbs. per month, or 750 lbs. for the summer.

We are so thankful US Cellular came in to help us with this huge project!

Smile Maker

Last week, this precious little girl came in with her mother to pick up her birthday box. If she’s smiling now, just wait until she opens her box!

Children enrolled in the Children’s Birthday Project receive presents for both their birthday and Christmas, from ages 3-12. We are able to provide this service for 700 DuPage and Kane County children in low income families.

Children like this little girl receive a birthday box filled with:

  • 6-15 new toys
  • 6 new books
  • 1 game
  • Stuffed animals
  • Party supplies (including cake mix, frosting, themed party plates, hats, etc.)
  • Gifts from their wish list
  • School supplies
  • Filler gifts

This project brings joy to 700 children in their formative years. Low income parents are so grateful for the service because we are able to provide the special surprises and gifts they cannot afford for their children. And the best part? All of this is possible thanks to generous donors and volunteers! It is great for these families to know that someone cares!

How can you help? It only costs $54 a year to sponsor a child and make every birthday a special one! If you are interested, email us at hsp@humanitarianservice.org or call 630-221-8340.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

UPS Amps Up HSP Support

A great friend of HSP, UPS has been volunteering with us for a while, now. Already, they come to our center to volunteer several times a year, but they recently increased their support.

On Friday, they brought us a check to sponsor a senior in our program!

Kyle Speirs and Dan ­­­­Sauer of UPS organized an employee event to raise money for the sponsorship. The employees made a voluntary contribution to participate in fun competitions.

All the money raised was donated to sponsor a senior in serious need and we couldn’t be more thrilled!

Nine UPS employees are here volunteering today, helping sort food for our Feed the Kids Project.

Thank you UPS, for your continued support. You’ve been a blessing!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Assurance Safety Consultants' Donation

Last Friday, John Schumacher, Senior Vice President of Assurance Safety Consultants, came for a tour and brought HSP a $4000 check!

Assurance Safety Consultants has been a long-time friend to HSP. We are so grateful for their contributions and continued support.

The money Assurance Safety Consultants donated will help the poorest of the poor in DuPage and Kane Counties. This money will provide groceries and vital items for impoverished seniors and food, birthday presents, and school supplies for impoverished children and their families.

We cannot thank Assurance Safety Consultants enough for the big difference they are helping us make in the lives of those that need it most!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Let’s Stamp Out the Hunger!

Tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow! Stamp Out Hunger operation will be in full effect. We encourage everyone to leave non-perishable food by your mailbox, so tomorrow’s postal workers could pick it up.

We want to thank everyone who called us and offered to help this coming Saturday. We look forward to seeing you all. Let’s have fun with it tomorrow while doing an amazing service to help our community.


Thursday, May 12, 2011

Kaplan Chiropractic Associates Delivers!

Kaplan Chiropractic Associates donated three large boxes of paper products, today!

The donation included paper towels, toilet paper, and facial tissue. These are very helpful and popular items among the seniors enrolled in our Senior Citizen Project. They often cannot afford these items, so they are always very excited and gracious to receive them.

The large donation from Robert Kaplan’s office was delivered by Marge Nilson, employee at Kaplan Chiropractic and a member of the Lombard Jr. Women’s Club, another great friend to HSP.

We are so happy and grateful that Kaplan Chiropractic Associates took an interest in us and decided to help. Thanks, Kaplan!

Furniture Delivery!

HSP received a beige leather couch, a bed frame, and a box spring from generous donors. We were able to put these items to good use by delivering them to Fallah and Maria, 2 seniors enrolled in our Senior Citizenship Project. Fallah was in need of a couch and Maria was sleeping on a broken box spring and bed frame.

We are so fortunate to receive quality donated items for our senior citizens in need. Two of our hard-working volunteers, Larry Erven and Art McGinn graciously took time out of their busy schedules to personally deliver these items to Fallah and Maria.

HSP is so thankful to have such wonderful volunteers and donors! Your donations and support really do make a difference. As one senior citizen says, “This program has made me so happy. I am blessed. Thank you so much.”

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Queen of PR

Lisa Kimball was here today teaching Paul, our Community Outreach Coordinator, the PR ropes. Lisa, a long-time friend of HSP, has 30 years of public relations and marketing experience and has been kind enough to volunteer and offer her sage advice.

“I was reading the website one day and saw HSP needed volunteers in the writing department. I wanted to help publicize all the great opportunities at HSP,” Lisa said. She contacted us and since then, she has been advising Paul with her PR specialty.

“My husband and I have been friends of HSP since our son, Doug, volunteered to help with the Children’s Birthday Project as an Eagle Scout,” said Lisa. “We’ve been supporters since then.”

Their sons are now grown and Lisa is helping us more than ever.

“It’s been extremely rewarding,” Lisa said. “Everything we’ve talked about has been coming true. More Daily Herald coverage and a spot on Wheaton College radio – it’s been great.”

We could not be more grateful that she has volunteered her expertise. It has helped HSP gain publicity in big ways, and more publicity means more support. A huge thank you goes out to Lisa!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Comforting Delivery

Comfort Keepers, a non-medical homecare service, comes by HSP every month to drop off food. Today, they made their monthly stop and brought a donation of 113 pounds of food!

These are just some of the items they brought:

· Rice

· Macaroni and cheese

· Spaghetti

· Over the counter medications

· Cereal

· Mashed potatoes

· Beans

· Peanut butter

· Canned foods

· Spices

· Baking ingredients

· Treats

These items will go to seniors and families in need in DuPage & Kane Counties. This food is a big deal for the impoverished people we serve.

“You all have the greatest program in the world. I couldn’t ask God for a better program, it’s truly a blessing from heaven. Now that I’m able to eat better, my health has really improved and I can feel I’m getting stronger.” -- A senior enrolled in our program.

When Generosity Strikes

Beth Follert and her friends were chatting the other day and HSP came up. The group, from Naperville, decided they wanted to make a difference, and they did just that!

Beth came by yesterday with a big delivery for the children and seniors in our programs. The items they brought will make a big difference in the lives of our children and seniors, and we are so thankful!

Their donation delivery included:

· Books for children

· New Legos

· Several toys

· An aquarium

· Lots of toilet paper, for seniors

· An awesome foot massager for a lucky senior!

Their generosity will make some children and seniors very happy. It is such a blessing for those enrolled in our programs to know that someone cares and is thinking of them.

“I look forward to delivery day every month, it’s exciting. I know things like soap, shampoo, toilet paper, and toothpaste don’t sound like a big deal to most people, but for me, it’s so nice. It’s truly a gift.” –A senior enrolled in the Senior Citizen Project.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Volunteers: We Need You!

We are still in need of volunteers to donate and deliver Holiday Meals this month. We currently have 15 more seniors that have requested meals. Meals can be delivered at a time that works for both the senior and volunteer.

The seniors enrolled in the Holiday Meals program really look forward to these meals each month and it truly brightens their lives. Past volunteers have reported that this is a very rewarding volunteer opportunity.

Volunteers are more than welcome to serve multiple seniors, if they so desire. We still need volunteers for seniors in the following towns:

  • 1 senior in Bensenville
  • 1 senior in Carol Stream
  • 1 senior in Downers Grove
  • 1 senior in Glendale Heights
  • 2 seniors in Villa Park
  • 3 seniors in Westmont
  • 5 seniors in Wheaton
  • 1 senior in Woodridge

“The corned beef, cabbage, and potatoes I received on St. Patrick’s Day were just wonderful! It was lovely having company and it’s not something I’m going to forget anytime soon! I always look forward to the Holiday Meals. It’s a highlight of my month!” said a senior enrolled in Holiday Meals.

If you or anyone you know can help, PLEASE CONTACT US!



Friday, May 6, 2011

Ervin Kendzora Book of Golden Deeds

This afternoon, Karole Kettering, Founder/Executive Director and Floyd Kettering, Founder/CEO, Sarah Grindstaff, Senior Citizenship Project Coordinator and Paul Yambrovich, Community Outreach Coordinator, attended the Exchange Club of Naperville Luncheon and Award Ceremony on behalf of their outstanding volunteer, Sue Martinelli. Sue received the Ervin Kendzora Book of Golden Deeds Award. The exchange club awards those volunteers who give hours timelessly and effortlessly to those in need.

Karole Kettering and Sue Martinelli

Sue Martinelli, who has been volunteering at HSP for over 3 years, has volunteered generously by collecting non-perishable food, new toys and books for the Christmas Offering. She is also a Secret Pal to two seniors in the program, and has donated items such as a microwave, TV, recliner, VCR, TV stand, end tables, an air conditioning window unit, and vacuum cleaners. As if these donations were not enough, Sue also takes part in the Holiday Meals Program, where once a month, in honor of a holiday, seniors receive meals from volunteers which are either home-made or store bought. Despite the fact that the two seniors she provides Holiday Meals to are on opposite sides of DuPage County, she says, “The joy I receive from my volunteering fills my heart and soul.”

When Sue began delivering to one of the seniors, 91 year old Juanita, she found out how little family support Juanita had and Sue felt that she simply had to help. In addition to supplying a meal, Sue called her family to help Juanita with the many needed repairs that had to be done around her house. Scraping windows, painting, and installing an air-conditioning window unit are just a few ways Sue and her family helped Juanita.

Sue did not just stop there. When Juanita needed rides to her doctor visits and eye appointments, Sue was right there. When Juanita had mobility issues and started using a walker, Sue was there to help and comfort her. She also helped Juanita in reading her prescriptions.

When Juanita faced the challenging task of packing up her home to move to an assisted living center last December, Sue was there to support her. While Juanita is no longer in our program, Sue continues to visit Juanita and help her in any way she can.

Sarah Grindstaff receiving Sue's award from a member of the Exchange Club

Sue unfortunately could not make it to the event but expressed her sincerest gratitude saying the following:

My sincerest apologies for not being able to attend your wonderful organization’s luncheon today.

Thank you for selecting me to receive your Ervin Kendzora Book of Golden Deeds Award. I am truly honored to be recognized for my volunteering at the Humanitarian Service Project of Carol Stream.

My dedication and drive to help my senior ladies, Juanita and Mirella, organize food drives in my neighborhood and my involvement in the Christmas Giving Tree are a direct result of Karole Kettering and her staff’s enthusiasm and vision. Knowing the difference they are making in so many lives, from children to the elderly in DuPage and Kane Counties makes me grateful to be able to support their efforts.

HSP thanks Sue Martinelli for her gratitude and support, and the difference she makes in the seniors’ lives. Indeed, it is because of volunteers like Sue that there is less suffering in the world.

Lombard Junior Women’s Club

New member of the Speakers Team and HSP staffer Sharon Fritz attended the Wednesday evening meeting of the Lombard Junior Women’s Club and gave a talk to update members on all of our good works in the community. It was her second speaking engagement of the day, having started her day with fellow Speaker Team member Lesley Ronson Brown at the Rotary Club of Central DuPage’s breakfast meeting. The Lombard Juniors have been consistent supporters of the Humanitarian Service Project’s mission to serve needy children, seniors and families since 1990. Sharon said, “The Lombard Junior Women’s Club members are such a warm-hearted, high-energy group and they had so much fun at their meeting. We are fortunate to have great friends like them who do so much to help others in need.”

The Speakers Team plays such an important role in strengthening existing relationships with existing supporters and building new ones with potential donors and sponsors. We are delighted to have Sharon representing the HSP and she has been highly complimented by the groups she has spoken to. If you are interested in joining the Spea

kers Team, please let us know. As Sharon says, “It is such a fun and rewarding way to help further the HSP’s mission to serve the poorest of the poor in our community!”

Thursday, May 5, 2011

HSP in the Spring

Beautiful red geraniums were kindly planted by our Communications Coordinator, Paul Yambrovich. These flowers brighten up the outside of our office. After this spring’s cool and wetter than normal conditions, these cheery geraniums are just what we need to make it seem like spring is really here!

HSP would like to thank Paul for helping to create a gorgeous environment outside. Now it finally feels like spring.

Computer Delivery for Seniors!

HSP volunteer Mike Reich delivered computers to senior citizens Mary and Johnietta today. Mary and Johnietta are enrolled in HSP’s Senior Citizen Project and are thrilled to be receiving the computers, which were generously donated to HSP! Mike kindly put programs on the donated computers and made sure that they were functioning properly.

Mike eagerly volunteered to pick up the computers and personally deliver them to the senior citizens. He also thoughtfully set up the computers himself so that Mary and Johnietta could use and enjoy them. Mike has been volunteering for about 10 years and started as a back-up delivery driver before getting his own route and becoming a regular driver.

Mike thoroughly enjoys serving others and helping those in need. “Since I retired, I have time to give and there is need for assistance. The delivery is fun and enjoyable. I love being able to see and talk to the same people every month,” Mike tells us. “HSP does a lot of good stuff—no other organization in the area does what they do!

HSP is incredibly grateful for Mike and all of our volunteers’ dedication and support.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Catching Up with Old Friends

This morning, Sharon, our Administrative Assistant, and Lesley Ronson-Brown, a volunteer, were the guest speakers at the Central DuPage Rotary Club meeting at Cantigny Golf Club.

They spoke about all the good the project does, how important sponsorships are, and how HSP is able to change the lives of impoverished seniors and children in DuPage County.

Central DuPage Rotary has been a great friend to HSP for many years. They’ve supported us by sponsoring a senior since 1996. It was great to catch up with them and Sharon had a wonderful time.

Sponsorships, donations, and volunteers truly turn the wheels here at HSP and make it possible to change these lives for the better.

“I can honestly say that this program has added years back to my life. I would never be able to afford the healthy food that I need to stay alive. The people at HSP are so wonderful; there isn’t a thing that you could change about them or their program,” said a senior enrolled in our program.

A big thank you goes out to Central DuPage Rotary Club for 13 years of help and generosity!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Mr. Rice Guy

We get all kinds of donors, here at HSP. Many donate time and effort, some donate money, and others donate all sorts of items. We know some of them well, while others are anonymous, and one in particular is always interesting!

Today, Rice Guy came in.

Once a month, every month, like clockwork, Rice Guy hastily arrives and departs from HSP. He brings 27 pounds of rice and will not tell us his name or anything about himself. He just comes in, puts the rice on the counter, and exits as mysteriously as he entered.

He has been doing this for years. We just know his car, his face, and that he will always bring rice!

It is always a pleasure to get a donation, but we also love the little interesting stories about our donors. We appreciate all the giving hearts we encounter and love to see how each of them gives, in their own way.

End of the Year Celebration

Sarah Grindstaff, our Senior Citizen Coordinator was invited to attend the End of the Year Celebration for the Niebuhr Center of Elmhurst College. At the Niebuhr Center, you will find a community of Elmhurst students and others who have made a commitment to a spiritual life of service. Our current intern Cheri Buban is a part of this program and other Neibuhr Center students have interned for HSP in the past. The Center encourages social engagement among faith-motivated individuals from diverse religious backgrounds through a variety of programs and activities.

At this celebration, the achievements of the seniors in the program were recognized and presented with honors awards. This was a moment to celebrate all Niebuhr Center students and conclude the academic year at Elmhurst College.

We are excited to be partnering with the Niebuhr Center through their internship placement program!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Holiday Meals Volunteers Needed!

Mother’s Day is coming up and HSP needs volunteers to make (or purchase) and deliver a meal to a senior, in honor of the holiday. The seniors enrolled in the Holiday Meals program really look forward to these meals each month and it truly brightens their lives.

Meals do not have to be delivered on Mother’s Day, but at a time that works for both you and the senior. Volunteers are still needed for 32 seniors. Volunteers are more than welcome to serve multiple seniors, if they so desire, and many of these seniors live in the same buildings.

· 1 in Aurora

· 3 in Bensenville

· 2 in Carol Stream

· 6 in Downers Grove

· 1 in Glen Ellyn

· 1 in Glendale Heights

· 1 in Naperville

· 2 in Villa Park

· 1 in Warrenville

· 3 in Westmont

· 9 in Wheaton

· 1 in Willowbrook

· 1 in Woodridge

If you or anyone you know is interested in providing a Holiday Meal for a senior, please contact us at: 630-221-8340 or scp@humanitarianservice.org