Today's News

Wheelchair Ramps Available to REMC Customers

wheelchairCitizens who require wheelchair access to their homes can now get a ramp by calling Joan Haugh at the Starke County Community Services office.

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IU Health and Community Services of Starke County Hosting Annual Health Fair

Health FairIU Health Starke Hospital and Community Services of Starke County are teaming up once again to host an annual health fair. This year’s event will take place Tuesday, May 13 from 2 until 7 p.m. Central at the Nancy J. Dembowski Community Center in downtown Knox. Community Services of Starke County Executive Director Joan Haugh says it grew out of the Governor’s Council on Aging in Indianapolis and the thought that they could share the same type of educational information with more people by teaming up with the hospital and offering a local event. This is the 13th year of the partnership.

Haugh says May is an ideal time for the health fair, as it is Older Americans Month. She adds it’s open to all ages, including children. This year a free children’s coloring area will be set up to keep youngsters occupied while their parents or other caregivers browse the booths and take part in the various screenings.  Continue reading

Community Services of Starke County Hosts Tailgaiting Fundraiser

 

David Haugh

David Haugh

Attention sports fans. Don’t miss your chance to hang out with Chicago Tribune sports writer David Haugh and bid on some exclusive Chicago sports SWAG Saturday night. He’s headlining a tailgaiting party Saturday night at the Nancy J. Dembowski Community Center to benefit a nonprofit organization close to his heart. His mother, Joan, is the executive director of Community Services of Starke County. Proceeds from “Tailgaiting with David Haugh and Charlie Adams” will all benefit the agency. Haugh says the organization was a part of his life when he was growing up in North Judson and is very important to Starke County because of all of the services they provide. He and former WSBT sportscaster Charlie Adams will be at the 5 p.m. event, which will include a live auction of a lot of sports memorabilia. Items up for bid include items from the reigning Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks and footballs signed by Chicago Bears players. The Chicago White Sox also donated items, and a signed Notre Dame Football will be sold as well. Continue reading

Tailgating Party to Benefit Starke County Community Services

A tailgating party featuring David Haugh and a special guest has been scheduled for Saturday, April 12 to benefit the elderly services programs offered by Community Services of Starke County. David Haugh is not only the son of Community Services Executive Director Joan Haugh, but also a graduate from North Judson-San Pierre, a former South Bend Tribune employee, and a current columnist for the Chicago Tribune.

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Additional $5 Million Allocated to Low Income Energy Assistance Program

With nearly 10 percent of Hoosiers utilizing propane for their residential heating, the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority recently allocated an additional $5 million in funds to assist low-income families with their energy needs. The funds were released to the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, to be funneled to local service providers who cover all 92 counties.

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Two Starke County Chamber of Commerce Awards Presented Last Night

Henry Schricker

Henry Schricker

The Starke County Chamber of Commerce last night awarded the second annual Business of the Year award and the Henry F. Schricker Award during a ceremony held at the Bass Lake Property Owners Association Building. Dr. Ron May, president of Ancilla College, began the ceremony with an invocation, before Dorothy Osinski, chairman of the membership committee, handed out 10-year consecutive member certificates to 15 members who have been with the Chamber of Commerce for ten years continuously.

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Joan Haugh Named Schricker Award Winner

Joan Haugh

Joan Haugh

The 2013 Henry F. Schricker Award winner was recently announced.

Joan Haugh was selected as this year’s winner. Haugh has been the director of Community Services of Starke County for 30 years and has been involved in many volunteer projects in the county. Some of those volunteer efforts include working with the St. Vincent DePaul Society, Habitat for Humanity, Moving Starke County Forward, Starke United and the Salvation Army. She is active in her church, the SS Cyril and Methodius Catholic Church, and has previously taught CCD classes there as well as marriage preparation classes.

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Community Services of Starke County Offers Christmas Aid

Community Services of Starke County

Community Services of Starke County

With the spirit of giving in the air as the holidays approach, Community Services of Starke County is offering a helping hand to families in the area. Director Joan Haugh said that while they provide the food pantry services year-round, they are still coordinating efforts with other agencies in the community to provide other services as well.

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Community Services of Starke County Doesn’t Anticipate Federal Funding Problems

Community Services of Starke County

Community Services of Starke County

With the ongoing debate over the federal budget, local organizations funded with federal dollars are getting nervous that the potential government shutdown – the first in 17 years – will affect agencies at a local level. Fortunately, at Community Services of Starke County, Executive Director Joan Haugh said she doesn’t expect the shutdown, if it does occur, to affect her funding much.

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Local Organizations Feeling Pinch of Federal Funding Cuts

Community Services of Starke County

Community Services of Starke County

The effects of federal funding cuts are trickling down to the local agencies that deal with transportation for older residents and other services.

Community Services of Starke County Director Joan Haugh said the organization has incurred a 24.3 percent federal funding cut for transportation, which was before the sequester took effect. Elderly services, which include congregate meals, home-delivered meals, homemaker services, and restaurant voucher programs, have been cut by 12 percent.

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Leadership Starke County Participants Needed

Community Services of Starke County

Community Services of Starke County

Volunteers are being accepted until the end of the day today to be part of the Leadership Starke County organization.

Participants in this program learn about government, non-profit organizations, education, economic development and more services pertaining to the county.

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Leadership Starke County Looking for Future Leaders

Volunteers are welcome to be part of the Leadership Starke County organization.

An opening retreat is set for Friday, Sept. 6 where team and trust building activities will be reviewed as well as a personal assessment and what it is to be a leader.

Joan Haugh from Community Services of Starke County says it’s surprising what one can get out of this organization.

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Community Services of Starke County Recognizes Volunteer of the Year

Ober Arbor Gleaners Club was presented with the Volunteer of the Year award by Community Services of Starke County.

Ober Arbor Gleaners Club was presented with the Volunteer of the Year award by Community Services of Starke County.

Community Services of Starke County held its volunteer luncheon yesterday afternoon, recognizing more than 100 volunteers and 50 agencies for their many hours of hard work and their overwhelming contributions to the agency.

One organization in particular was recognized for going above and beyond with their assistance to Community Services. Ober Arbor Gleaners Club received the Volunteer of the Year award, having donated to the food pantry, helped pay for the air conditioner at Community Services, assisted at Golden Living Nursing Home and the Humane Society, Love INC, and countless individuals.

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Starke County Food Pantry Asking for Donations

Community Services of Starke County

Community Services of Starke County

The Starke County Food Pantry is once again asking for the community to show their support for those less fortunate by donating any number of items to the pantry, alleviating some of the stress for low-income Starke County families who may have a hard time getting food on the table. In February, Organization Director Joan Haugh told the Knox City Council that the organization serves 21 percent of the county’s population through its various services: 951 families per month visit the food pantry, 823 people utilize transportation monthly, 745 families signed up for energy assistance, and many more make use of other services offered by Community Services.

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Community Services of Starke County Suffering Funding Woes

Community Services of Starke County

Community Services of Starke County

While donations have been steadily coming in to the Community Services of Starke County Food Pantry, Organization Director Joan Haugh said other programs offered by the organization are suffering from a lack of funding. Haugh told the county council this week that they are incurring further reductions in funding from both the state and federal government, primarily affecting their transportation program.

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Starke County Health Advocacy Group to Hold Public Meeting Tomorrow

Nancy Dembowski

Nancy Dembowski

A group advocating for a healthy Starke County is holding a community discussion on Thursday in an effort to raise awareness of a number of issues, including the county’s low health ranking, local drug abuse, and the necessity of a preschool project.

A number of local governmental entities have announced their support of Moving Starke County Forward, having declared 2013, “A Year of Health in Starke County.” The North Judson Town Board signed the proclamation in January, while the Starke County Commissioners and Knox City Council had done the same two weeks prior.

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Starke County Food Pantry Received Generous Donations in Dec.

Community Services of Starke County

Community Services of Starke County

The Starke County Food Pantry served 272 families in the month of December. That amounts to 855 people including 109 elderly patrons.

Community Services of Starke County Executive Director Joan Haugh said while the numbers haven’t been calculated, the donations were generous in December. December is a popular month for donations as it’s primarily the season for thinking of others and while this is great, Haugh said it’s important to donate throughout the rest of the year. More than 8000 pounds of food were distributed in December.

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DHS, FEMA Award Starke County With Emergency Food and Shelter Funds

The Department of Homeland Security and FEMA have awarded Starke County with $11,412 to supplement emergency food and shelter programs in the county.

The Starke County Emergency Food and Shelter Board will determine how the funds will be distributed among the programs within the county that are run by local service agencies in the area.

Public or private voluntary agencies interested in applying for Emergency Food and Shelter Program funds must contact Joan Haugh at Community Services of Starke County at (574) 772-7070 for an application. Completed applications must be received by Dec. 17 at 4 p.m.

Starke County Food Pantry Gearing Up For Upcoming Events

Community Services of Starke County

Community Services of Starke County

The season of giving is on its way and the Starke County Food Pantry is once again receiving a decent amount of donations, but Community Services of Starke County Director Joan Haugh emphasized that their other programs are in need of help as well.

“People are so generous. They give to our food pantry, but they kinda forget we have these other needs too. In order for us to continue, we have to raise those dollars. I don’t know what we’d do without the generosity of individuals and agencies and businesses, and I can say the township trustees too; city of Knox, the county commissioners, they give us funds too which helps support our programs,” said Haugh.

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Starke County Food Pantry Shelves Barren; Donations Desperately Needed

Community Services of Starke County

Community Services of Starke County

The Starke County Food Pantry is in desperate need of donations.

Community Services of Starke County Director Joan Haugh said they have not been able to order from the Northern Indiana Food Bank for two months and the shelves are bare.

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