By Daniel Meyer
Following a simple philosophy of doing what needs to be done to improve the lives of people who live in the community, Love INC. is embracing the holiday season by providing assistance to various local residents who have a financial, emotional or spiritual needs.
With numerous successful accomplishments achieved over the past 20 years, representatives of the organization are proudly looking back at what they have done and, just as importantly, looking ahead to what can be done to make the Village of Springville and surrounding communities a better place in which to live.
“The community support of what we do is incredible,” said Wendy Cocca, who has served as Love INC’s executive director since June 2010. “We are able to help improve the lives of others because the people of Springville have been so generous to us in a variety of ways, including their talent and time.”
The organization is an affiliate member of Love INC National. As an independent not-for-profit 501c(3) entity, Love INC. relies on monetary donations and the hard work of volunteers to follow their mission, “to mobilize the Church to transform lives and communities In the Name of Christ.” Founded in 1996, Love INC’s approach to its work is focused around 10 core values that include prayer, building relationships and placing value in the poor and needy.
Phone calls received at Love INC’s call center are carefully answered by volunteers who screen potential clients to assess their needs. The requests for assistance are then analyzed to help determine which one of the organization’s expansive network of churches and social service agencies would best help assist that particular client.
Love INC. made a concentrated effort this year to improve their transportation ministry, allowing low-income clients and those with no access to an automobile or public transportation more opportunities to get to and from a doctor’s office, social service agency appointments and other important meetings.
“We recognize there is a transportation gap and we are trying to fill that by providing safe and easy rides to and from medical appointments and other special events in people’s lives,” said Cocca. “To provide peace of mind to someone that they do not have to cancel a scheduled procedure at the doctor or dentist because they can’t get there is important to us.”
A major accomplishment that Love INC achieved over the past year was the successful conclusion of a campaign to pay off the mortgage and officially purchase their property on East Main Street in Springville.
“We made that final payment because of the financial support of so many from the community and we did so 11 months ahead of schedule,” said Cocca. “The significance of achieving that milestone and doing so nearly one year before we had originally planned shows us the people of Springville are pleased with the work we are doing and wanted us to have a permanent home in this wonderful community.”
Seasonal endeavors that Love INC. is providing administrative support for during the holidays includes “Operation Christmas Child,” the annual Salvation Army Red Kettle collection and the 2016 Warm The Children campaign. Specific details about each of those programs can be found on Love INC’s website.
As the organization looks back at two decades of dedicated service to the community, Cocca believes Love INC’s board of directors and the many volunteers who provide assistance in numerous ways throughout the year have additional projects and outreach efforts in mind.
“Whatever we can do to help serve the people of the greater Springville area remains a goal we all share,” said Cocca. “Love INC looks forward to a promising future of serving Christ and our member churches to hopefully improve the lives of those in need.”
The Love INC office, which is located at 62 East Main St. in Springville, is open Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Anyone who is interested in learning more about the organization can stop at the office, call (716) 592-3761 or visit www.loveincspringville.com.