Umbrellas sprouted rapidly this morning as chamber members and visitors hurried into the building that now houses Mother to Mother Ministry. The building, which is located at 728 N. Heylman, was once a state of the art youth home, built to conserve energy and cut down on heating and cooling costs.
Ralph Carlson, Chairman of the Fort Scott Youth Home, explained that the building, which was constructed in the 1980s, is built in such a way that sunlight does not enter the windows during warmer months, but that during the winter, the design allows for sunlight to shine in. According to Carlson, the furnace hardly needs to run in the winter on sunny days. “It was really a state-of-the-art design,” Carlson said. “It is great that Mother to Mother is using it.”
Wilma Leach, who is in charge of Mother to Mother Ministries, reported that the ministry is in its 15th year. Leach explained that the ministry was begun with a grant from the Sisters of Mercy, and is now funded by the United Way and grant writing done during the year. Leach said that the ministry trusts in God in meeting its financial needs. “We have a lot of people come through our doors,” Leach said.
Another facet of the ministry is the support Mother to Mother provides for crisis management teams coming to Fort Scott from Pittsburg. Leach explained that the basement floor of the building is used for emergency housing for a victim of crisis and also as a place in which crisis management workers can counsel those in need.
In addition, Mother to Mother assists needy families by distributing clothing for children. “We give a lot clothes, we receive a lot of clothes [from donations],” Leach said. Mother to Mother ensures that children are able to attend school in nice, appropriate clothing for the season, according to Leach. Leach said that Mother to Mother often works with the Beacon to assist those that come for help, and that the working relationship has been a good one.
In other business:
- City Manager Dave Martin announced that the sidewalk work on National would be temporarily suspended as the city focuses on the 69 corridor project, on which some work may begin as early as May 2014. “We worked with KDOT all day yesterday,” Martin said. “More than likely, we will not be adding the National upgrade until next year.” Martin said that there would likely be “lots of activity” going on in the city next year.
- Angie Kemmerer, Early Childhood Coordinator for USD 234, announced the Community Resource Fair to be held this Saturday, August 10th. The event will be held from 10AM-2PM at Fort Scott Middle School. According to Kemmerer, the purpose of the event is to connect and acquaint residents with service providers and resources in the Fort Scott area. Numerous seminars on Healthy Living and Financial & Legal Affairs will be offered throughout the day. According to Chamber Executive Director Lindsey Madison, Angela Meyers of Reynolds Law firm was instrumental in organizing the seminars.
- Madison announced that the city would be holding 3 more Art Crawl events August 23rd, September 27th, and October 25th. Of the first Art Crawl held in July, Madison said, “It was a great success.”
- Brian Comstock of Citizens Bank, N.A. announced that Citizens was “very excited” about the merger with Landmark. Comstock assured the community that operations would continue as before. “After the transition, you will see the same faces,” Comstock said. “Both our locations will continue to operate as usual.” Comstock explained that checks, debit cards and financing services would remain the same.