Categorized | Business, Community

Crisis Center has tough July, McAlister’s fund-raiser ends month on a positive

By Thomas Sellers Jr.McAlister inside

July ended with a gleam of hope for Millington Crisis Center Director Lois Wilber.
When the calendar turned to the seventh month of 2013, the phones were ringing constantly at 8133 Wilkinsville Road. Wilber and staff tried to assist all they could, but the money ran out by July 10.
Wilber covered the last expense to help a needy family from her personal account.
“People don’t realize we do that all the time,” she said. “I’ve done it so many times before when we ran out of money. We came $600 out of our pockets this time.”
In desperate need of some financial help, the longtime director organized a fund-raiser with McAlister’s Deli at 8390 Highway 51 North. On July 30, from 3 to 9 p.m., McAlister’s donated 10 percent of revenue that night to the Crisis Center. The event raised $127.
“All contributions help when so many are losing there jobs,” Wilber said. “We have so many first time people who come into the center and don’t know what to do. They’re embarrassed. They were told they were over qualified or under qualified. These are some unbelievable times.”
Wilber said she is grateful to the staff of McAlister’s for providing a venue, decorating the dining area and raising awareness to the Crisis Center’s need for funds.
The Millington Crisis Center opened 25 years ago with Wilber as one of the volunteers. She took over as director a decade ago and oversees the Center assisting the Millington area’s needy.
Local groups have helped keep the Crisis Center’s doors open over the years. St. William Catholic Church and Millington First Baptist Church gave a regular donation. The Millington Kiwanis Club pays the phone bill and also donate regularly.
Millington First United Methodist Church helps run the Food Pantry and other contributors are NSA Mid-South Chapel, St. James CME Church, Rosemark Church of God in Christ, OpenMarket Place and BancorpSouth.
The Center donates food and clothing to families in need with help also coming from private contributors. A family is eligible for up to $200 a year.
Wilber said the Center is seeing about 150 families a month. The Center is open Tuesday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
“People need to realize you can’t give them everything,” Wilber said. “But you can’t give anybody anything if you don’t have anything to give.
“We just need families in Millington to realize if you give a small donation, that will be OK,” she concluded. “The “Crisis Center is more than just handing things out. People should remember the Proverb, ‘There but for the grace of God Go I.’ If we all come together, it will help out so much.”

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