Bensalem divides up $250,278 from community development block grant

May 10, 2016 | Chris English | Bucks County Courier Times

The Bensalem council voted unanimously at its Monday night meeting to divide up this year’s $250,278 community development block grant four ways.

The grant is for the fiscal year starting July 1. It comes to the township every year from the state Department of Community and Economic Development using funds provided by the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development.

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United Way to establish fund for families facing emergencies

May 08, 2016 | Peg Quann | Bucks County Courier Times

An Emergency Needs Fund is the latest way the United Way of Bucks County hopes to serve families facing financial difficulties, the organization’s staff announced Friday morning at its “Bucksgiving Breakfast.”

Marissa Christie, UWBC chief development officer, said the goal for the fund is to raise $100,000 to help people “before they are in crisis” so that a one-time emergency like an unexpected hospital bill, a large auto repair or the need for a security deposit on an apartment doesn’t put a family living paycheck to paycheck into a downward spiral that leads to real financial difficulties. “It puts them at risk of losing everything,” she said.

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Drive for Youth Golf Outing to Benefit Family Service

May 05, 2016 | Family Service Press Release

Over the past sixteen years, Family Service Association of Bucks County’s Drive for Youth Golf Outing has raised over $670,000 for programs and services that directly benefit children and families in our community.

Last year, Family Service provided direct services to over 2,200 children and teens in need. You can help Family Service continue to meet the needs of children and teens in our community by supporting the 17th annual Drive for Youth Golf Outing on June 6, 2016 at Jericho National Golf Club in New Hope, PA.

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O’Neil Buick GMC Donates Hope Truck to Family Service

May 03, 2016 | Family Service Press Release

O’Neil Buick GMC of Warminster generously donated a box truck to Family Service Association of Bucks County. The “Hope Truck” will be used throughout the county to transport donations of food and other items to the Bucks County Emergency Homeless Shelter and to Family Service’s other program locations.

Family Service is grateful to Bucks County resident Geoff Fitzgibbons who wanted to make a difference for people in need in our community. Fitzgibbons, a volunteer and supporter of Family Service, recognized that a large vehicle would make it possible to accept donations in greater quantity and of a wider variety than had previously been possible. He reached out to his friend Mike O’Neil, owner of O’Neil Buick GMC, and proposed the donation of a truck. O’Neil enthusiastically supported the idea and, along with his son Kevin, purchased and reconditioned a white Isuzu box truck and donated it to Family Service.

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May is Mental Health Month: Family Service Encourages You to Speak Up and Share What Mental Illness Feels Like

May 02, 2016 | Family Service Press Release

When mental illnesses are discussed, the language typically used to describe them tends to be clinical and impersonal. These words, while useful for doctors or clinicians, often don’t do justice to what life with a mental illness feels like. That is why this year’s theme for Mental Health Month—Life With a Mental Illness—is a call to action to share what life with a mental illness feels like to someone going through it.

Mental Health Month was started 67 years ago by Mental Health America to raise awareness about mental health conditions and the importance of good mental health for everyone.

This year, Family Service and Mental Health America are encouraging individuals to give voice to what it really means to live with a mental illness. Life with a Mental Illness is meant to help remove the shame and stigma of speaking out, so that more people can be comfortable coming out of the shadows and seeking the help they need.

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At homeless camp, waiting and worrying

May 01, 2016 | J.D. Mullane | Bucks County Courier Times

Chris Hilgar is 51 and homeless. It’s Monday. He stands in the brick plaza of the Levittown Veterans Memorial, worrying.

“They’ve told us we gotta get out by 8 (a.m.) Friday. But where to? I don’t have any place to go.”

He looks around the Bucks County Government Services center, a sprawling campus that holds the Levittown Library, an automobile impound lot and, in the distance, woods.

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Family Service’s Helpline Volunteer Answers Call and Saves a Life

April 26, 2016 | Family Service Press Release

A college student recently called the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-TALK), and one of Family Service Association of Bucks County’s volunteer listeners answered the phone. The caller told the listener that he had been thinking about suicide for a while now and, just the night before, he had sat on a bridge contemplating whether or not to jump off.

The caller said he had contacted the student health center to make a therapy appointment, but the earliest appointment he could get was a few weeks away. With the student’s permission, Family Service’s volunteer listener called the student health center and informed the staff of the caller’s thoughts of suicide and experience on the bridge.

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Customers Bank makes donation

April 25, 2016 | Bucks County Courier Times

Customers Bank, with branches throughout the region including Doylestown, recently had a check presentation ceremony acknowledging the bank’s $25,000 donation to Family Service Association of Bucks County, an outreach organization serving more than 24,000 Bucks County residents each year.

The donation has been earmarked to support programs including the Bucks County Emergency Homeless Shelter. With approximately one-third of the shelters’ residents children, the donation will help to fund building a playground and expand the facilities’ parking area for families and service providers.

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Area tech school students heading to national SkillsUSA competition

April 25, 2016 | Joan Hellyer | Bucks County Courier Times

A team of Bucks County Technical High School students is using its talents to not only compete in the annual SkillsUSA competition, but also to help others.

Madeline Bobst, Sage Hall and Gianna Manela teamed up to create a hot sauce called Tech Sauce using the perfect blend of tomatoes, distilled vinegar, peppers, garlic, water and other ingredients. The teammates also worked collaboratively with two student artists to create the labeling for the hot sauce and students from the school’s carpentry department to create the packaging for it, said Gianna, a junior.

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Customers Bank Donates $25,000 to Family Service Association of Bucks County

April 20, 2016 | Family Service Press Release

Customers Bank, a community-based bank with locations throughout the region, has donated $25,000 to Family Service Association of Bucks County (Family Service), a non-profit organization that serves more than 24,000 people in need each year in Bucks County.

Family Service offers a variety of programs and services focused on increasing opportunities for adults, protecting seniors, reducing substance abuse, improving the lives of those with mental illness, preparing children and adolescents for the future, improving the quality of life for those living with HIV/AIDS and more.

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