The John Edward McLaughlin Family Fund, administered by the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation, recently awarded nearly $10,000 to organizations in Randolph, NY.
Grants were awarded to Randolph Fire Company to purchase smoke and carbon monoxide detectors for fire safety outreach; Randolph Regional EMS Corporation to purchase two video laryngoscopes; and Randolph Area Community Development Corporation to purchase a new banner for the Veterans Parade and install storage racks in the baseball and softball dugouts.
The Randolph Area Community Development Corporation also received grants on behalf of several organizations including the East Randolph Cemetery for tree removal; and Randolph School District for the After Prom Event.
According to Dale Senn, Randolph town supervisor, this grant will allow the Randolph Fire Company to purchase 24 smoke detectors and 20 carbon monoxide detectors to distribute to residents in need through its Fire Protection Program. All the devices will be purchased locally at Randolph Hardware.
The McLaughlin Fund is one of the few funds at the Community Foundation that is able to grant dollars to religious organizations. Grants were awarded to the East Randolph United Methodist Church to purchase kitchen equipment for the Love in Action food delivery program; Grace Episcopal Church to upgrade the electrical wiring; St. Patrick Church to purchase a projector and portable screen; and East Randolph UMC, Grace Episcopal Church, St. Patrick Church and United Presbyterian Church for ecumenical vacation bible school.
This past year, East Randolph UMC was included in a grant that brought a semi-truck of 1,100 boxes filled with meat, dairy and produce to be distributed to families in Randolph. At the end of the four-weeks, volunteers were stunned at the sheer volume of people in need throughout their community.
“There were so many people that came looking for food after our supply was exhausted, we knew we had to keep this going on some level after the food truck program ended,” said Kelley Liskow, who wrote the grant.
In October, volunteers began Love in Action, a faith-based outreach program that provides soup and a sandwich on Saturdays to nearly 400 residents of all ages in Randolph, and its surrounding community. In addition to providing a warm meal, volunteers are also providing a sense of community that many have been missing.
“One of our recipients has stated that she is so thankful that meals were brought to her and her husband the week she was in a serious car accident,” Liskow wrote. “As each week has passed, the significance of the meal lessened, but the relationship between them and our volunteers blossomed, especially as her husband’s health deteriorated.”
Operating solely through donations from church members and community residents who learn about the program and want to help, this grant from the Community Foundation will allow the church to purchase a variety of kitchen-grade equipment to streamline the cooking process to give volunteers more time to focus on what really matters, each other.
“People are craving relationships, interaction and nourishment,” Liskow wrote. “Our meals are a simple way of opening the door to meet a physical need by providing food. Once the door is opened, hearts are opened and lives are changed.”
About the McLaughlin Family Fund
The John Edward McLaughlin Family Fund was created in 2007 at the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation to support the charitable activities of religious and non-religious organizations in Randolph, NY. Since then, more than $100,000 has been awarded to community projects, initiatives and activities throughout the community.