More people helping HOPE

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But group still needs more volunteers

By Jesef Williams

Frances Harris has her hands in just about everything at HOPE in Lancaster.

The Lancaster resident stocks food, places phone calls, does computer work and sometimes serves as a receptionist at the charitable organization that assists with food, rent and utility bills.

Harris is one of many local residents who have chosen to lend a helping hand to HOPE, which has seen its number of volunteers more than triple over the past two years. Harris has been volunteering at HOPE since January.

Harris spends a few afternoons each week volunteering at HOPE.

She believes she’s doing something worthwhile.

It’s been a shock to see the amount of need in the area right now, she said.

“It’s just unbelievable – the number of people who are struggling at this time,” Harris said.

HOPE director Elaine Adkins said the organization had just 28 volunteers in March 2007 but now have 102.

But it needs even more people to help handle computer duties, stock the food pantry shelves and interview potential recipients.

“We are thankful Lancaster is getting involved and trying to help with critical needs,” Adkins said.

Donna Hartley, HOPE’s volunteer coordinator, lauds the volunteers’ commitment to the organization. She said they are very reliable.

“You cannot emphasize enough how much the volunteers run this place,” Hartley said. “There’s huge amounts of dedication.”

Contact reporter Jesef Williams at jwilliams@thelancasternews.com  or at (803) 283-1152