The local Faith in Action program and the Stanley IGA grocery store will introduce a new shopping and delivery service for community members who are elderly or disabled.
Jill Pollert, BSW, Ministry Our Lady of Victory Hospital Community Link Specialist, coordinates Faith in Action.This interfaith volunteer caregiver program is sponsored by MOLVH and is a partnership between the hospital and several area churches. It provides basic support to the elderly, people who are disabled, and mothers. One of the main services is providing transportation to medical appointments. Other supportive services include grocery shopping, errands, companionship, and telephone reassurance calls.
Jill said the idea for the new service came from a former area resident who volunteered for a similar program through Faith in Action in Sparta, Wis. She said, “Lloyd Larson told me about the success of their program in Sparta. Since this is consistent with our Faith in Action mission, we were enthusiastic about supporting a similar program in Stanley.”
Lloyd initiated the project, and contacted the Stanley area churches and the local IGA store. He said, “While I was working on reservations for the Stanley All-School Alumni Association meeting last year, I talked to several senior citizens. Upon noting the lack of a grocery delivery program, coupled with a lack of taxi service, I saw the need for a similar one day per week shopping for seniors and shut-ins for Stanley. Such a program is presently operating successfully in Sparta under the Faith in Action organization sponsorship.”
Lloyd learned that the there was a local Faith in Action program. After meeting with the IGA grocery reps, he contacted Jill Pollert and Pastor Sarah Semmler-Smith, who both responded positively. Volunteers were then sought from the community. A sufficient number have responded and the program is ready to begin.
Pastor Sarah Semmler-Smith at Our Saviors Lutheran Church has been instrumental in supporting the project and recruiting volunteers. She said, “Where there was a person in need, that's where you saw Jesus at work in the gospels. Today, we are called to be Christ's hands and feet in the world – working for peace, justice, and love of our neighbors in real and concrete ways. If the need of the people is for access to groceries, then we are called to make that happen, as far as it depends on us.”
The service will begin on Wednesday, February 2.
Here’s how it will work:
- Orders will be taken only on Wednesdays, from 8-9 a.m.
- People will call the IGA at (715) 644-5842 to give their order.
- If they do not specify a brand for an item, volunteers will select the least expensive brand
- Volunteers will shop, bag and deliver the groceries that day.
- Volunteers will also collect payment. Participants can provide the store a credit card number or pay by check or cash. Volunteers will not be able to make change.
- This service is available only to people who reside within the city limits of Stanley.
- There is no charge for this service.
Jill said that although they have enough volunteers to get the program off the ground, more volunteers are welcome. She said, “We are still seeking more volunteers to ensure the program can meet the needs of the community as more people begin to use the service.” The commitment is usually less than two hours per week People interested in volunteering for this project, or other Faith in Action projects, call Jill at (715) 644-6188.