Tribune-Courier News Reporter
Marshall County Caring Needline will host an open house and note-burning ceremony Wednesday at 1 p.m.
The event is open to the public.
“We’d like for everybody to come by and tour the building, see what we do and what we’re working with and meet our volunteers and our workers here,” said Needline administrator Becky Cornwell.
Needline offers various assistance programs, a food bank and U.S. Dept. of Agriculture commodities, and works with area churches and service organizations to serve the needs of citizens.
MCCN chairman Melonie Chambers will speak and the note burning will follow. Refreshments and a tour of the facility will be provided.
The current building was purchased in 2002 after the previous facility was devastated three times by flooding from the Clarks River.
The current location, 307 East Main Street, was previously a Benton Oil Service distribution center. It was available for purchase and already vacant when the search for a new facility began.
Fundraisers and donations provided MCCN with enough funds for a $50,000 down payment, and the remaining $114,200.20 was financed through the Bank of Benton (now CFSB) with a 20-year payoff schedule. In January, just 12 years after purchasing the property, MCCN made the final payment.
Judge Executive Mike Miller said he looks forward to celebrating the milestone.
Fiscal Court guaranteed the loan to purchase the facility, but Miller gave credit to “the generosity of the people of this county” who have been “very, very supportive of Needline.”
Now that the bank note is paid, funding will be available for other needs, such as maintenance of the facility.
MCCN recently replaced two 30-year-old air conditioners and a water heater that burst.
Replacement of carpet that was damaged from leaking water is on the to-do list.
More funds will also be available for back-to-school, Thanksgiving baskets, Christmas baskets, Easter baskets, and utility and mortgage assistance programs. Efforts to help relocate victims of fire or domestic violence and child abuse will also benefit.
Cornwell has been part of MCCN since October 1996.
“It’s my life,” she said. “I think this is my calling that God has blessed me with.”
Cornwell acknowledges that MCCN is dependent on volunteers who show up each week when they are scheduled and take to heart the work they are asked to do.
Cornwell is also grateful for the men who provide assistance through the work-release program of the Marshall County Detention Center.
Along with the staff members who regularly volunteer, MCCN also receives support from youth groups and churches, civic groups, local businesses and the community at large.