Karen Snair carried two vacuums up a series of steps to Alle Kiski Strong’s room in Harrison on Friday.
The devices were among hundreds of items for the Allegheny Valley Association of Churches in Harrison. She and four volunteers made 12 trips to load a Suburban and the back of a truck.
“I am overwhelmed,” said Snair, executive director of the Allegheny Valley Association of Churches. “These articles will help so many people. We offer housing to people who are homeless. They don’t always have the money to buy the things they need. One of the most requested items is a sweeper.
Kristina Serafini | Tribune-Review
Roger Kaufman of Harrison (right) and his wife Vicki Kaufman help load donated items into one of their vehicles outside the offices of the Alle Kiski Strong House in Harrison on Friday, June 11, 2021. Women Volunteer Group of Alle Kiski Engaging, a division of the chamber, collected donations for the Allegheny Valley Association of Churches in Harrison to distribute to families in need.
In addition to vacuum cleaners, donations collected included toilet paper, diapers, shampoo, deodorant, feminine hygiene products, laundry, mops, buckets and cleaning supplies. There were even a few school backpacks.
The items were collected over two months by a group of volunteers, Women of Alle Kiski Engaging, who delivered drop boxes to businesses in the area to collect donations.
WAKE is a division of the Alle Kiski Strong chamber, whose mission is to empower women and promote women’s leadership.
“We have launched an appeal to help families in difficulty,” said Cici Broxie, president of WAKE and board member of Alle Kiski Strong Chamber. “People want to help. They just need to know what they can do.
WAKE women get things done, said Snair, who lives in Fawn. She said she appreciated anyone who made a conscious effort to buy something and drop it off for someone else.
Broxie said she was shocked when she saw all of the donations – they filled the bedroom office boardroom.
“We are blessed to be able to do this for you,” Broxie told Snair. “We appreciate everything your organization does for the community. “
The Allegheny Valley Association of Churches helps people with everything from food and furniture to dishes and other basic household items. It includes 54 churches of 13 denominations. She provided services to over 19,000 people last year, including her food bank.
Kristina Serafini | Tribune-Review
Lynda Pozzuto, Executive Director of Alle Kiski Strong Chamber in Harrison, transports donated items to a vehicle outside the chamber’s offices on Friday, June 11, 2021. The women of Alle Kiski Engaging, a group of volunteers and a division of the chamber, collected donations for the Association of Churches of the Allegheny Valley to distribute to families in need.
Lynda Pozzuto, executive director of the chamber, said the community has really responded and some people have dropped off items at the chamber’s desk.
The landing areas included Allison Park, Butler, Cheswick, Ford City, Freeport, Kittanning, Lower Burrell, Leechburg, Mars, Natrona Heights, New Kensington, North Apollo, Pittsburgh, Sarver, Springdale, Saxonburg, Tarentum, Upper Burrell, Vandergrift and Worthington.
WAKE hosts digital media specialist Ginger Howard for “Building Business and Relationships Through Social Media” on July 15 at Hill Crest Country Club in Lower Burrell.
WAKE is also planning another fundraising campaign in July for Veterans to be distributed on Veterans Day. Further details will be announced.