Faces of FCS
“I am still a work in progress,” Parelee says. “But I am learning to put one foot in front of the other and keep walking.”
Ten years ago, Parelee Simmons was battling physical, mental and emotional issues that impaired her judgment and left her on the brink of homeless. In desperation she agreed to seek help from FCS’s Representative Payee, a program that aims to reduce homelessness by creating financial stability for at-risk individuals. For 15 years FCS has been providing financial management services for those receiving Social Security benefits who, due to significant mental, developmental and/or physical disabilities are incapable of managing their own funds. For Parelee, Rep Payee has been essential to helping her get her life back on track. Since enrolling in the program, she has earned an Associate Degree, moved into her own apartment and is now working part-time.
“My wife died 15 years ago in November. If I didn’t soldier on, I’d go crazy. Volunteering keeps me busy.”
Harry Sherr just celebrated his 95th birthday, but the former television mechanic, company president and Army veteran shows no sign of slowing down. For the past 15-years, Harry has volunteered with SHIP (the State Health Insurance Program), counseling eligible beneficiaries about their Medicare question. Harry says a majority of the people coming to him for help are new to Medicare “They just turned 65 and want to know how to enroll, how to get coverage and what type of coverage to take.” Harry enjoys spending his retirement helping others. “My wife died 15 years ago in November. If I didn’t soldier on, I’d go crazy. Volunteering keeps me busy.”
Operation Sleighbells brought joy to the faces of more than 1,500 area children, and peace of mind to parents like Jean.
Like most working mothers, Jean juggles her daily schedule with the busy schedules of her four children. But for this single mom, the juggling also includes frequent time away from work without pay to care for a daughter with multiple disabilities. The unpaid leave, coupled with mounting medical expenses, can put a strain on Jean’s finances, which is why she is thankful for FCS Operation Sleighbells. The holiday giving program provides gifts of toys, coats and pajamas to children whose families are facing financial challenges. In 2016, Operation Sleighbells brought joy to the faces of more than 1,500 area children, and peace of mind to parents like Jean.