Tags: Time Is Now
The Time is Now to Help
CNN visit continued
Time is Now Founder Sal Dimiceli is interviewed for CNN's Heroes contest. He is one of the top ten finalists.
November 02, 2011 | 08:24 AMThere were two important questions that CNN asked me. How does The Time Is Now to Help have no overhead? How do you accomplish helping so many people?
I personally cover all expenses for The Time Is Now to Help, I always have. Every penny donated by a supporter is utilized to help the poverty-stricken. The Time Is Now to Help has no salaries, no reimbursements, and no office expenses. Presently my company, Lake Geneva Area Realty, provides all necessities, office space, computers, printing, volunteers, etc. All at no cost to The Time Is Now to Help. I have an outside audit completed annually that shows all income and expenses. The reason I began The Time Is Now to Help is because I was appalled by all the charities I used to give to that had extensive overhead with only 10 percent, 20 percent, or 30 percent really going towards their cause. I made a promise to God to help others that were having hard times. I personally cannot help all those that we have found in desperate need by myself. That is why I need your help, your support. The only way I can truly earn that support is by making sure every penny you donate, 100 percent, provides shelter, utility assistance, food, clothing, toiletries, household necessities, daily necessities of life, to those that are living in desperate need, living with the fear and pains of poverty.
How do we help so many people? I showed CNN many examples. I received a request for help from a very good person I have known for a few years. Since I knew this person I knew the request would be desperate. The request was regarding an elderly widow living in a condemned place. I quickly set up a meeting. I took CNN with me to show how we help. When we arrived I saw the elderly widow, who appeared to be much older than we later found out. I could see the widow was very bewildered not only by her situation but also because she was being told there would be help. I found out that a government entity that should have offered assistance had known about her situation for over a year, and nothing had changed. The widow doubted she would receive any help and I did not blame her. A big part of my being is getting people to open up and understand we are there to help, and we do.
The widow was very introverted due to the fact she has been alone for decades. My first prayer was to gain her trust. This took small steps but those initial prayers were answered. She allowed me to inspect her so-called shelter. I found the floor rotting away with big holes. I found the water shut off due to numerous leaks in the pipes. You could tell the leaks had been present for a very long time. The cabinets in the bathroom were extremely water damaged and there was mold throughout.
When we came outside, where two gracious volunteers had taken the elderly widow, I asked how the elderly widow was left to live in that environment. I was told that the employee from the government agency that was supposed to be offering assistance, said to put down 2 by 6 boards for her to walk on and to put in a portable commode with buckets of water. They had me listen to an old voicemail message confirming the suggestion for continuing to live in deplorable conditions.
I thank God for bringing me the elderly to help because I love to help them. We talked about moving the elderly widow to another location. She was reluctant due to her severe fear of the unknown. But it is up to us to help, no matter what the obstacles are. I could not in good conscience allow this dear elderly woman to live in those conditions any longer.
This is what we did, together, in one and a half days. We found another place by talking to a wonderful landlord. The new place needed to be prepped and seven people with different God given talents came immediately to help. The group worked throughout the day and night. CNN could not believe that one phone call after another was made, and not one person said no. In fact the usual enthusiasm of all those that came to help left the CNN crew in awe of the care we share for one another.
While the new living location for the widow was being prepared she was taken for a much needed makeover. You may ask how? We instilled our true feelings of caring into the widow's heart. These feelings of trust and love are so important. This was easy because we shared a common belief with the widow and it was God, the feeling of goodness towards one another. We helped the widow, through a government agency that truly believes in what they stand for. They helped groom her. We provided new clothing. We took the widow to the beauty salon. A saint of a person completely changed her appearance and restored her self-confidence. She removed two feet of matted hair and gave her a short style that changed her appearance. I looked straight into the eyes of the elderly widow, asked if that was really her, and for the first time she smiled and even laughed. I gave her a hug and together our eyes swelled with tears of relief and happiness.
I took CNN to another stop to visit an old friend who owns a furniture store. I informed the owner of our dilemma with the elderly widow and how we needed to furnish a place within a matter of hours. The owner told me all his trucks were out including all his helpers. I immediately called for a truck driver, I was told the driver would have the truck at the furniture store in 20 minutes. I did my usual sprint throughout the store. With the help of the owners expertise we picked out the furniture. At that moment I needed more help. I graciously asked this six person CNN crew to help. Five of the six started caring the furniture from all over the store to the back loading area all while the sixth CNN person took pictures in disbelief. The CNN director asked, "Does anyone ever tell you no?" I said, "You could have been the first why are you helping?" He told me, with a big smile, "How could anyone not want to be part of this. It feels real good to help and be part of the widow's transformation." The owner of the furniture store gave us incredible pricing and included a few free pieces for the widow.
We set the furniture up putting everything in its place. The widow's new cabinets were filled with food and her refrigerator was also filled. Other volunteers, now bringing the total to about eighteen, had gone shopping for toiletries, bedding, household necessities, a new vacuum, pots and pans, small appliances, washer and dryer… Everything needed to put life back into our fellow creation.
Everything was all set. The volunteer who brought the elderly widow to my attention brought her to her new place. Together we walked her in. She was wondering where she was. She was handed the key and was told, "This, dear, is your new home." She froze in place, staring with her mouth open. After almost a minute, which seemed like forever to me, she finally broke down crying. In a soft shaking voice she asked, "Mine?" I told her yes, your place to live. Still in disbelief we walked around showing her, her new place. Still in a slight state of shock, I sat her in her new chair. She looked up at me and started to cry. We hugged, then I invited all the volunteers to come back in and we had a welcome home party. The widow was so happy. I explained to her, and CNN, this is the only way The Time Is Now is able to help and that is by all of you, our supporters making things happen.
It took a day and half to complete the transformation of the widows life. For many it seems very quick, but I could not help the impoverished elderly widow fast enough. I know God is watching me, you know the goodness we all have in our hearts and minds to do the right thing. This elderly widow was brought to the attention of us at The Time Is Now to Help. This was not a show for CNN. The cameras were rolling the entire time while we made our calls to our great God caring network. The volunteers could have asked when do you need help? The volunteers could have said maybe tomorrow. The volunteers could have said they were busy… But not one volunteer said no. As caring and sharing people kept coming and going I would constantly thank God with a smile and tears in my eyes. Seeing all the volunteers happily, enthusiastically working together to quickly take away the pains of poverty for this elderly widow showed CNN how we, together, not I alone but all of us kept our own internal promise of doing good. God bless all of you for caring and sharing.
On Dec. 11, at 7 p.m. on CNN, there is one thing I want to accomplish. I want to show that all problems, as complex as they seem, can be solved by simple solutions and people coming together with a positive attitude of goodness in their heart, to accomplish by, for and of God's creations.
I want to show to the world our government needs to stop fighting amongst themselves. Even in our great United States of America our two parties spend more time arguing, debating, not working for solutions for the people… Once again I say if our government parties were a marriage we would grant them a divorce due to being destructive and non-productive. Our recession proves it, the suffering of over 50 million Americans proves it.
It is not socialism we should be afraid of. If it was not for government Social Security, so-called socialism, the elderly, the grandparents, those that bore us or our parents… Would not have their only financial lifeline. When governments fail at doing their job this is what gives us the fear of government involvement, socialism. Now, I am not saying I'm a socialist. But what I am saying is why are we providing the best health insurance, good paying jobs and giving all our tax dollars to our representatives of "Our" government if in fact we do not trust them for providing excellent decisions for all our well-being. Remember by, for and of the people? Our country is in a sad state, it is 2011 and our so-called best business minds have driven our entire country into a great recession, leaving tens of millions of Americans hungry, homeless, living in fear, having no hope, barely surviving in desperate pains of poverty. There is no excuse for this except lack of harmony to get things done by, for, and of the people.
I find young children who have joined the cry of the elderly saying they will not eat or maybe they should not be living because they cannot cause their parents or grandparents anymore suffering from not having enough food or causing extra cost to the family. I find this very upsetting! Why are these children blaming themselves! Since our independence of our great United States of America, our government made a promise and we made a promise to our government representatives. We the people have always held up our end. We live by our government laws which includes the IRS, and rightfully so. We cannot allow our poor children, our gifts from God to take the blame for their families hunger and poverty.
I pray our government officials get to work, find the simple solutions and all agree to implement those solutions as quickly as possible. If in fact our true representatives, like Neil Kedzie, would take on each problem individually, think of the people, and do what was right for the betterment of the people, our country, our beloved country, would get well fast. The complex problems the government creates is when they are faced with a single problem, the other side will not agree. Even if it's right for the people, unless the other side gives them something else they want, which is completely unrelated to the original problem/solution they are trying to solve. Our government creates its own complications, allowing the government to take months and years to solve a problem, instead of expeditiously implementing solutions, as we do with The Time Is Now to Help.
I'm sorry. Sometimes I'm told just help our poverty-stricken Americans, do not express your political feelings. How can we be silent when we see God's people suffering more and more every day? The elderly, the children, the handicapped, all good fellow Americans need our help. My heart aches for their suffering. I will continue to provide, to care, to love all Gods creations. Thank you for caring, thank you for sharing. Don't forget to vote for your CNN Hero 2011 at www.cnnheroes.com . You can vote up to ten times a day per email address and facebook account.
Health and Happiness, God Bless Everyone, WC/Sal
Please Help: Make checks payable to: The Time Is Now to Help, P.O. Box 70, Pell Lake, WI 53157. The Time Is Now to Help is a federally recognized 501(c)3 charitable organization licensed in the states of Wisconsin and Illinois. You will receive a tax deductible, itemized thank you receipt showing exactly what every penny of your donation provided for the poverty stricken.
A Very Special Thank You: Richard H. Driehaus Charitable Lead Trust, Kunes' Country Ford, Mark & Natalie Reno, Dick & Jean Honeyager, Mary Kay Ring, Martin O'Brien, Michael Patterson Foundation, Peterson Drywall, Lake Geneva Animal Hospital, Sue & Dan Daniels, Rita's Wells Street Salon, De Drymalski, Lisa Lilly, Betty Jeziorski, Brian Jeters, Carl Rhodes, Dan Kosterman, Dennis & Linda Hoeft, Tina Rice, Evergreen Septic Service, Doug Crowther, Ace Resume, Estelle Reeder, Danielle Crow, Sylvia Goldberg, Ron & Robin Bender, Laurie Forrestal-Parr, Bill & Dotty Tookey, Virginia Sellke, Delores Olson, George Kass, Kenneth Conell, Diane & Roland Schroeder, Kathleen Truesdale, Leslie Scheurer, David & Penny Froh, Michael Glass, W.C. Family Resource Center/Food Pantry volunteers, and all the God loving volunteers of all our caring food pantries, ALL of you who support The Time Is Now to Help donation boxes, and the businesses that allow our donation boxes. Anyone who would like a Time Is Now donation box in your business, please call (262)249-7000.
Memorials: Florence Merkin in memory of Esther Menneke. Elizabeth & Richard Czaja in memory of Jane Newman. We Desperately Need Cars : Please donate a used car to help our fellow American's get to work and other daily necessities.
Goodsearch for The Time Is Now: Search the web with www.goodsearch.com and help to raise funds for The Time Is Now to Help. Just make www.goodsearch.com your homepage and pick The Time Is Now to Help as your charity. Please visit: www.timeisnowtohelp.org