& Executive Director
24 hours/7 days per week
89 Cares Drive ~ P.O. Box 1342 ~ Jasper, GA 30143|
12:30 PM - 3:00 PM
10:00 AM - NOON
8:30 AM - NOON
"Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God."|
|OUR MISSION STATEMENT|
|Our mission is to provide food and essential non-food items, temporary financial assistance and resource counseling for those in need residing in Pickens County, Georgia. Anyone who is placed in a difficult situation due to illness, accident or misfortune that causes them to be in temporary or emergency need of the basic essentials of living is welcome to be a recipient. It is our devout hope that those who receive these goods and services will be strengthened in body and spirit.
|HISTORY OF CARES|
CARES was established in 1997 as a ministry of The Episcopal Church of the Holy Family in Jasper after members there shared their vision to help feed the less fortunate in Pickens County. Others shared in the call to care for our neighbors as the Gospel would encourage, and pretty soon there were dozens of volunteers working together to remodel a building preparing to open a facility set to respond to the emergency food need for Pickens County. Soon after the Pantry opened its doors, 4 or 5 volunteers were providing emergency rations to 12 – 15 families.
Gradually, the mission of the Pantry grew beyond the borders of The Episcopal Church, as members of other churches and members of the community at large began to join the ranks of volunteers. The name was changed from The Community Food Pantry to CARES, which stands for Community Assistance Resources and Emergency Services for Pickens County, to emphasize the community–wide support the Pantry was beginning to garner. Along the way, the Pantry’s initiative was also expanded to include financial assistance. Soon various church and civic organizations were contributing to this county – wide initiative as well.
CARES has continued to grow in the service and support it provides to those in Pickens County, and in the way of its own independence – as it is now separate from The Episcopal Church of the Holy Family to which it will always owe a lot of debt and gratitude. After hiring its first Executive Director in January 2004, and then incorporating under the umbrella of Community Assistance Resources and Emergency Services for Pickens County, Inc. (CARES), it is now referred to simply as CARES.
CARES is overseen by a volunteer Board of Directors working in conjunction with the Executive Director. In 2004, CARES was incorporated by the state of Georgia and designated an independent charitable organization.
CARES is still operated almost exclusively through and by volunteer efforts. It takes approximately 100 volunteers to make the CARES “go” each week. Meanwhile, CARES is providing emergency food and financial assistance for an average of 100 families per week. The current population of Pickens County is 30,000. With continued growth, the county is expected to reach 75,000 residents by 2020 – obviously the community services provided by CARES will continue to be a vital resource.
There is never any charge for assistance provided. Those seeking assistance must be residents of Pickens County, and will be asked to fill out a brief application for services at the time of their first visit. No formal documentation is required for food assistance. Those requesting financial assistance will be required to produce documentation of bills to utility companies, creditors, medical or prescription charges, etc. as is applicable.
A volunteer counselor will meet briefly with each client and may make referrals to other community agencies or services as appropriate. After meeting with the counselor, clients requesting food assistance will receive approximately one week's worth of basic food supplies. The amount of food given is determined by the number of people in the family. Available products can vary from week to week. When available, non-food items are included (for example - diapers, toilet paper, soap, detergent, etc.)
Requests for financial assistance are considered on a case by case basis. Since CARES depends on donations and grants for funding, available money from these sources can sometime be limiting factor in determining whether aid can be given. Please note that funds may not be available immediately at the time of a request, as decision are generally made by committee within a few days of the request.
Size 5 Diapers
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|HOW YOU CAN HELP|
CARES exists almost entirely because of volunteer efforts. Donations of food, time, as well as financial contributions are essential and are always appreciated. There are many ways to help in full or part – time volunteer positions including delivery truck drivers, greeters, shoppers, stockers, counselors, data entry, and etc. No donation of time, food, or money is too small! We are a charitable organization so donations are fully tax deductible!
Donations by check should be made out to:
PO Box 1342
Jasper, GA 30143
No formal documentation is required when you receive food assistance during your first visit to CARES. When you "check-in" next with a CARES counselor, you will need to bring:
- Personal Identification in form of a picture ID
- Proof of address and residence in Pickens County (Utility bill, property tax statement, automobile registration, etc.)
- Identification for dependents living in your household (Social Security Card, Recent School Report Card, Documentation of Disability with Adults, etc.)
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