Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Hancock County

Good morning, readers! As you've, hopefully, previously read, the Mobile Express Unit has been spending a lot of time in Hancock County in Northwest Ohio. Our event on the 14th was marred by storms, but three days later we traveled to nearby Findlay to offer our services at a food pantry.

For obvious reasons, food pantry events tend to be successful in terms of meeting people who could use our services. Many already have food stamps, but others are surprised to learn about things like Ohio's Home Energy Assistance Program and Ohio's Best Rx Prescription Program. The event last Saturday was no exception. With the help of some great volunteers, we performed over a dozen eligibility checks and even went through the application process with a handful of clients.

Only two days later, it was back to Hancock County for events in Rawson and McComb. I was accompanied on this trip by Jerry Lee (he's the handsome fellow in this picture). Jerry has been a great help in traveling with the OBB Express whenever Erin or I can't make an event. He was as helpful as usual over the past two days.

Admittedly, the event in Rawson was disappointing. Worse yet, we didn't have the weather to blame. Rawson and Arcadia are both very small towns with populations under 600. Despite advertising on radio and the local newspaper as well as fliers being distributed by the Hancock County United Way, we couldn't get anyone to bite on our services.

McComb is a little bit bigger than Rawson, so we had high hopes for our next event. The turnout was still more modest than our experience in Findlay, but we were happy to perform a handful of eligibility checks and Jerry managed to help someone apply for food stamps. Applications take time (a little over an hour), so they can be tough on the road. Anytime an application is completed in the OBB Express, it's a sign of a successful event.

So, there you have it. Four towns in Hancock County in six days. But we're not done yet! We'll be back in Hancock County next Friday in presumably lovely Arlington. Arlington's population is over 600, so our prospects are looking good!

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