February 01, 2012 | 07:29 AMThis letter marks our 450th column we've shared with all of you. It has been a labor of love and emotions sharing these moments with all of you. It has brought some unexpected media attention this year and an overwhelming amount of requests for assistance as our country has slipped further into a recession.
Many people are desperate for help. I never realized how our compassion, our networking, the assistance we all offer through The Time Is Now To Help, would be shared by the world. My hope is that we have inspired many across this great nation of ours, and the world, to open their hearts to helping others, to use their talents and energies to bring about a positive change removing the pains of poverty.
I have received thousands of emails, letters ... and yes many who are motivated to start their own God loving charity networking with good people, like we have. God bless all of you for making The Time Is Now To Help a truly recognized charity making big differences in our fellow creations lives.
I am asking for help for myself and my granddaughter. I took over raising my granddaughter when my daughter left her at my apartment several years ago. I have not seen her since. My granddaughter was born with several disabilities. I struggle with my own health problems as I get older. I am living with a terrible toothache and I am in need of cataract surgery.
I used all my savings taking care of my granddaughters special needs. I am very worried I do not have enough money to survive. I have been feeling this financial disaster coming on for a long time. My worse fear is upon us. My social security check is not enough.
Due to the requests for senior assistance I see very few senior citizens enjoying their "golden years." Many of them are living with health problems they must pay for out of pocket, and/or are raising grandchildren they had never planned on caring for full-time. Life is very hard for our senior citizens living on the edge of survival. I have seen too many of them forgotten and alone for too long.
I contacted the grandmother immediately. I arrived at the older apartment complex and was thankful to find the grandmother living in a first floor apartment. The door was answered by a small petite woman looking to be in her early 70s. She knew who I was immediately and tearfully asked me inside. I was greeted by a young woman in a wheel chair, much more disabled than I had expected. The grandmother introduced her granddaughter as proudly as any grandparent. I could see how she loved her unconditionally. The grandmother told me she had cerebral palsy. She said she needed her assistance with all aspects of care, including bathing and feeding. I asked her if she had any help with this care and she said she did not. She said, "My granddaughter does not like strangers around.
My daughter had many bad people in her life and they did not treat my granddaughter right. She told me people would throw things at her and laugh. She gets very frightened by some men and I don't want to frighten her further. She has been through enough already." She said all this while trying to hold back tears. I reached for her hand and felt the burden she was carrying. She was appalled by what her own daughter had allowed to happen to her granddaughter while she was in her care. She hung her head in shame as she said, "I should have seen what was happening and stepped in earlier. She would not have suffered at the hand of so many bad people, including my own daughter." I assured her it was not her fault. With that the grandmother seemed to lose her strength and fell back on the couch. She was crying as she thanked God we showed up. She said she did not know how she would have gone on.
This devoted grandmother did not think twice about taking on the challenge of raising her disabled granddaughter. At her advanced age she went about changing her life to accommodate the granddaughters needs, over her own. She used all her savings providing for the very special needs of her handicapped granddaughter. Her daughter was still receiving the granddaughters financial assistance and not contributing to her care. In fact, she had not seen her daughter or heard from her in over two years.
On top of that she had her own health emergency with her teeth and her eye sight. When the grandmother finally wrote her letter requesting assistance she was on the verge of financial disaster, paying just her rent, the utilities were late, their food sparse, her car in need of repairs. Again, a sad situation I deal with on a much too frequent basis. This poor woman was malnourished. She cried as she told me, "I have been living with the fear of being homeless. I have been eating as little as I can, keeping the heat very low, and turning off the lights." I hugged her, telling her we were there to help.
She was very thankful to hear my kind words of assurance. I pointed out the many sacrifices she was making as the wonderful grandmother she was. We then talked about the problems that led up to their present financial problems. We went over her budget. I arranged for volunteers to come by and give her some assistance.
We also provided food assistance, as when I looked through her cupboards and refrigerator I was distressed to see how empty they were. We brought her utilities up to date. We proceeded to hunt down the daughter and got the financial support needed for the grandchild transferred to the grandmother. We arranged for her dental work to be done immediately. This was a big relief, removing the constant pain she was living in. She again cried happy tears saying, "The pain is gone." After a period of time she was able to receive help with home health care. This enabled her the time to obtain the cataract surgery she needed so desperately. The surgery was a great success.
Now, several months later, the grandmother is much healthier and happier. They are able to enjoy each other more. The grandmother also told me her granddaughter was smiling more and even was beginning to enjoy all the wonderful people from The Time Is Now To Help. The grandmother hugged us with happy tears, yes us. I had explained how all of us work together and thanks to all of you The Time Is Now To Help continues to replace the pains of poverty with caring and sharing love. She kept hugging me saying, "This is for all of your friends at The Time Is Now To Help, hugs for all of them." She hugged me for five minutes, crying with tears of relief.
Health and Happiness, God Bless Everyone, WC/Sal Dimiceli Sr.
Please remember the Fox Charities $25,000 Matching Grant. Every dollar you donate will be matched by another, doubling you assistance for our poverty stricken fellow Americans. A Big Thank You to everyone for supporting The Time Is Now To Help. Together we make a big difference in the lives of our fellow creations.
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: Bill & Lois McEssy/McDonald's, Fox Charities, Kunes' Country Auto Group, Clarence & Marilyn Schawk Family Foundation, Paul Ziegler & the Ziegler Charitable Foundation, Leather Lips Watersports, Elkhorn Roofing, Gregg Kunes, Brian Pollard, John Clair, The Windhover Foundation, Chuck & Vicki Ebeling, Charles & Lynn Seideman, Richard & Jane Roman, Jean Zitzler, Michael Burke, Tim Green Physical Therapy, Jon Lindberg, Patricia Habtemichael, Roger & Jean Mayer, Amanda Wellnitz in honor of Ron & Kathy Wenzel and Carol Wellnitz, Roger Mattrisch, Nancy Soderstrom, Marie Kerkman, Charles & Penny Gruetzmacher, Donald & Kim Parker, Anna Cygan, Don & Emily Henderson, Kenneth & Patricia Sharp, Janet Snead, First English Lutheran Church Women, Myron & Shirley Parsons, The Hillmer's, Donald & Mildred Carl, David & Sylvia Linton, Tom & Leslie Weyhrich & Family, Leland & Linda Swenson, Doris Fidler, John & Karla Zils, John & Karen Gardner, Verna Bodine, Helen Miller, Robert & Eleanor Condon, 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: Eric & Connie Vogel in memory of Virginia Mummert, Clara McCarthy, and Marvis & LaVerne Carpenter.
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.