Raab Foundation Bellringer Fund needs your help | In Our Opinion

The Poulsbo Lions Club/Raab Foundation Bellringer Fund needs your help.

As of Thursday, the fund was a third of the way to its year-end goal. That could spell trouble for a lot of people in North Kitsap.

Consider making a holiday gift to the fund. Make a donation in someone’s name as a Christmas present. Make a donation in someone’s memory. Make a donation as a family in lieu of an something to have around the house. Make a love offering to the community. Chances are good that your donation will help someone you know.

If you gave to the Poulsbo Lions Club/Raab Foundation Bellringer Fund in 2011, you made a big difference in someone’s life.

Since its inception in 1946, the Poulsbo Lions Club/Raab Foundation Bellringer Fund has helped provide food, emergency shelter and emergency financial assistance to North Kitsap residents in need. There is no overhead; every penny goes back into the community, according to John Macdonald, co-chairman of the fund.

In 2011, money distributed by the fund to North Kitsap Fishline, Kingston’s ShareNet and St. Vincent de Paul Society enabled those organizations to help local families avoid eviction and keep their utilities from being shut off, and get emergency transportation to medical appointments and work. The fund assisted more than 300 local families and ensured 102 local families had food for the Christmas holiday.

In 2011, as the economic recovery continued to slog along, North Kitsap residents dug deep and gave what they could; some gave $5, some gave more. But the donations added up — combined, you gave a remarkable $33,061, some $7,471 more than that collected in the 2010-11 campaign.

Because of money you contributed, “We’re able to stretch what we’re doing for people in crisis — whether it’s paying rent, mortgage, or utilities,” said Rae Rodriguez, North Kitsap Fishline’s client services manager. “We’ve been in crisis mode for a couple of years, and we’ve probably tripled our client load since then.”

These organizations are coming up with creative solutions to help people meet their basic needs — matching people who need a place to live with people who need help with their mortgage, or connecting clients looking for work with companies and job service providers. But to meet immediate needs, like food and shelter, Fishline and the others depend on the money donated to the Poulsbo Lions Club/Raab Foundation Bellringer Fund.

Fishline, ShareNet and St. Vincent de Paul are a critical part of the safety net in North Kitsap. They are there for you and your family — and your fellow community members — when needed. Contribute to the Poulsbo Lions Club/Raab Foundation Bellringer Fund and keep the safety net strong.

You can take your Bellringer Fund donations to the North Kitsap Herald office, 19351 8th Ave., Suite 205, Poulsbo. Or mail to P.O. Box 1244, Poulsbo, WA. 98370. Donors’ names are being published each week in the Herald.

Thank you. And we wish you all the best for a healthy and happy holiday season and new year.


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