Our drive to find families, individuals, or organizations in need of help picked up steam this week, as we received 10 nominations for Hoch Publishing Company’s $1,000 Christmas donation. It’s becoming obvious already that there are plenty of worthy causes in Marion County to help, so for the next week Hoch Publishing Company will add $10 to the donation for every new or renewed subscription to the Marion County Record, Hillsboro Star-Journal, or Peabody Gazette-Bulletin.
A theme continued from last week’s nominations are families going through hard times because of job loss, either because of health issues or the economy. Marlene Herzet of Hillsboro nominated a family in which the husband lost his job after a fall worsened a preexisting health problem last year. The husband has found work since then, but the pay isn’t as good, and he undergoes treatment for the worsened health problem.
“My hope for them would be a brighter, happier Christmas than the one last year and to ease some of the burdens they struggle with daily,” Herzet said.
Kathy A. Matkins of Ramona nominated a first-time homeowner whose home needs extensive work, but who was recently laid off and didn’t’ qualify for any kind of unemployment assistance.
“She maintains the most positive attitude that anyone could ask for in light of her own situation,” Matkins wrote. “She has volunteered and helped with all our community activities and is always looking out for the welfare of others.”
A pair of anonymous readers nominated people who have had to give up their careers because of health problems.
Several Marion County organizations were also nominated this week. Jim Truax and Carolyn Gard, both of Peabody, nominated the HUB youth center in Peabody.
“The community has replaced items stolen earlier this fall, but help is needed to pay the mortgage and utilities each month,” Gard wrote.
Greenwood Stables and Equine Rescue received a pair of nominations, from Wendy Gibson and Andrea Unruh of Goessel. The operators of the horse rescue take in abused, neglected, and abandoned horses, Gibson wrote.
“They have saved over 25 horses in six months,” Gibson said.
Feed and vet bills have cost the operators thousands of dollars, only partially offset by giving riding lessons and offering pony rides for birthday parties and other activities, Unruh wrote.
Marion Community Christmas and Marion County Emergency Food Bank — both nominated the previous week — each received another nomination this week. Janice Waner of Peabody nominated Marion Community Christmas, and Jay and Gloria Pankratz of Lenexa nominated the food bank.
Gard’s nomination form was drawn Tuesday, so she can pick up a $25 gift certificate good at select merchants at the Marion County Record office in Marion.
— ADAM STEWART