Good Neighbors Make Good Neighbors
By Debbonnaire Kovacs, Sept 24, 2015 On Sunday, April 12, 2015, Kettering College of Medical Arts in Dayton, Ohio had its sixth Spring into Health 5K run, an annual event that began in 2009 and was organized largely by the Kettering Physician Assistant Program, many of whom run in the race. The race is a fundraiser for that program and for Good Neighbor House, a local faith-based community service organization.
This year, over 600 people showed up to run, and thanks to that level of eager participation, the college was able to donate $10,340 to the Good Neighbor House.
Physician Assistant student Missy Gottschlich was quoted as saying, “Raising over $10,000 for such an exceptional cause was a meaningful and eye-opening experience.” She added that since the PA program has a strong mission of caring for people in the community, donating to GNH was a natural fit.
The Good Neighbor House was begun by eight Dayton-area Adventist churches in 1994, and its services have continued to grow. Their mission, as stated on their website is: “Good Neighbor House is a nonprofit, faith-based, human development organization that provides health, nutrition, and education services to the under-served through relationships with relevant collaborative service partners.” In 2014, they served over 20,000 people, received over 1500 visits in their Healthcare Clinic, and blessed the Christmases of 136 families and 318 children. They do this all because of faithful volunteers as well as donations such as the large one from the 5K run—though smaller ones are just as welcome.
Victor Brown, Dean for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs said, “We hope that the number of participants for this annual 5k will continue to grow so that we will be able to donate even more in the future!”
The thousands of people helped by GNH, not to mention many thousands more served by the medical college and hospital, are not the only ones noticing the services provided by these organizations. WDTN, a local Dayton television channel, regularly publishes reports on them, and has posted two short videos AT readers may find of interest.
The first is about the fact that recently, GNH decided to expand its hours in order to serve more people, adding one Saturday afternoon per month to their hours. Tiffany Collie, Director of Operations for GNH, quoted the Biblical mandate for Christians to serve in any way God sends them, said, “To be able to offer these Saturday services to those who may not be able to get to us throughout the week, that’s what we are supposed to be doing.
The second video is about a neighborhood makeover in which GNH, police, and others worked together to help with cleanup, painting, planting, and other ways to brighten their property and their lives. GNH worked primarily on the home of an 89-year-old widow of a Navy veteran.
Lt. Andrew Booher, of the Dayton Police Department said, “We’ve got a lot of people willing to donate their time to help improve somebody else’s life.”