For many struggling with job losses or other financial strains during the winter, reaching out for help can relieve some of those stresses.
The Salvation Army is continuing to help the community with donations made to the Woodyard Fund. The fund helps pay energy bills for residents of Richland, Lexington, Fairfield and Newberry counties who are in crisis situations.
“My sister told me about it and said to try to call and set up an appointment,” said Tammier Grant of Columbia, who was helped by the fund. “It was so quick and I had lost my job and didn’t have income and the program helped me out right away.”
Grant realized that she needed help a few weeks ago when she fell behind on her bills. She recently started a new job, but was trying to catch up while taking care of her four children.
The Woodyard Fund traces its origins to 1816, when the Ladies Benevolent Society provided firewood and later coal to families in need. The society turned management of the charity over to the Salvation Army around the turn of the 20th century.
In 1930, William E. Gonzales, then editor of The State newspaper, began publicizing the fund and those it helped, which the newspaper continues to do each winter.
The Woodyard Fund usually runs from late November through March and focuses on those facing hardship or unemployment.
“It is a good program, and I appreciate everything that they do,” Grant said.
She, like many others, knows the impact the donations can have.
“When I can, I want to help donate to the fund.”