“I think we should help when we can and do our best to show respect and understanding. With all the things going on in the world, people need someone to be KIND to them.”
- Tina Persinger
Founded in 2000, the Calhoun County Family Resource Network (FRN) is known for its leadership in responding to needs and coordinating services in the county. According to Tina Persinger, FRN Director, “We have so many encouraging developments in Calhoun County right now that are helping to build hope and pride in the County!”
At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the FRN was the only agency open and worked hard to meet essential local needs. “We started food, hygiene and cleaning pantries for our community and continued to operate our thrift store” said Persinger. “The PACF brought us hope by offering funds to help stock our pantries. It was such a blessing and relieved our stress, knowing that we could provide for our clients’ essential needs. The support from PACF offered our clients hope as they gained confidence that they would have their most basic needs met and could move on to tackling other stressors in their lives.”
The FRN has grown significantly in the past year, securing a loan, purchasing its own building and adding four HUD approved apartments. The new facility supports the FRN’s plan to launch a “drop in” center for area residents to receive information and referrals. The FRN also expects to partner with the Calhoun County Health Department, Domestic Violence Center and Quick Recovery Team, to aid clients in securing a spot in a recovery unit or shelter, or to meet other essential needs.
“I think the Calhoun FRN gives our clients a sense of hope because we sit down and listen to their problems and try to find solutions. We listen to hear whether we, or another community agency, can best meet their needs,” said Persinger. “We help our clients to make calls, to apply, and to do the necessary paperwork—we don’t just send them on to the next agency.”
The FRN’s work makes a difference in people’s lives. “Our clients’ successes give us hope for the future,” said Persinger. “We’ve helped individuals who are ‘down on their luck’ and actively experiencing addiction. One gentleman who we’ve helped has been in recovery for over six months! He was featured in a recovery video, having gained part-time employment and secured an apartment. He said that whenever he feels like giving up, he remembers that we care and doesn’t want to cause us to be disappointed in him. It gives us hope for him and for our community to hear of his continuing progress.”