The Webster Community Chest recently released its annual report for 2017.
When the chest took root in the community 69 years ago, the thought of hunger and poverty in the community was incomprehensible.
Through the years the chest has continued to serve the 14,580 neighbors with life changes and challenges that have been bestowed upon them. In 2017, the chest began to take a new direction. The chest has been working with other charitable organizations in the town to be sure that all needs are being met. Even though the Food Cupboard has closed — food pantry needs are being met elsewhere — emergency food needs to be provided for anyone that is in crisis in the community. In 2017, 1,362 calls were received. Four families received emergency food assistance. Fort-three Webster children had a WCC scholarship to attend a week of summer camp. Twenty-nine families received financial assistance during their time of crisis or emergency; and one Webster family, whose house was destroyed by fire, received their deductible back through the Crisis Fund.
In 2017, the chest entered into a partnership with Meals On Wheels. The chest is now providing eligible Webster residents short term funding for their meals until long term federal funding is obtained. Three individuals were assisted in 2017. In addition, the chest provided funds to purchase 10 Hot Boxes that will be used exclusively for Webster deliveries.
The chest also helped a number of other organizations that provide services to Webster residents. In 2017 they included: Honor Flight, Annual Webster Senior Citizens Luncheon, Special Education Parent Teacher Association, RAMS East (self help group for people living with multiple sclerosis), the Webster Central School District Veterans Dinner and Webster Association of Senior Program Supporters where the chest paid the co-pay for the transportation of wheelchair bound residents.
All this is made possible by the donations from Webster residents, businesses and churches. The annual fund drive, which begins in fall each year, raises much of the needed funds to support all these programs. Donations are accepted throughout the year. To make a monetary donation, mail a check to 1000 Ridge Road, Webster. Credit card donations are accepted through at webcommchest.org. Donors can designate their United Way donation to neighbors in need. The WCC Donor Choice number is No. 1469.