The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

November 30, 2009

My Turn: You can get by with a little help from FSA

This week's "My turn" is by Deborah Chicorelli, president of the Family Service Association Board of Directors.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of The Family Service Association (FSA). One hundred years of helping area residents and families meet their needs.

While the definition and look of the American family has undergone a tremendous transformation in the last 100 years, one thing remains true: At various times in our lives we all need assistance.

The services offered at FSA have evolved but have remained true to the mission, "To support individual and family strengths and to assist area residents in meeting their own needs."

What has not changed is the respect that all individuals are offered when they request assistance.

The Family Service Association is at 277 Chestnut St. in Oneonta. The programs offered at FSA include the Clothing Program, Emergency Services Program, Parent Resource Center and training programs.

The Clothing Program includes the clothing room, where gently worn clothing and household goods are recycled and offered to area residents at no charge. The clothing program also sponsors the Back to School Program, which provides children with school supplies.

We also work with the Oneonta Clothing Guild to offer new sneakers, snow pants and boots to children in the Oneonta City School District.

The Emergency Services Program assists with obtaining medications, furniture recycling, hygiene and cleaning supplies, housing-search assistance, use of phones and fax machines and assistance with transportation.

The Emergency Program also coordinates the Thanksgiving Food Basket Project and the Christmas Adopt-a-Family Project. The Parenting Resource Center offers parent and caregiver training programs.

In addition, a library of books and videos on a wide variety of topics related to child development and parenting is available for loan.

The training programs are the Family Development Credential Training, a 12-month program offered to area human service workers to teach the empowerment model of social work, group facilitator training and volunteer training.

All of our services are offered to help area residents develop skills and acquire goods that will allow their families to live happier, healthier lives.

To continue to offer these services at no cost to area residents, a great deal of energy is invested in fundraising and grant-writing. This is why we are thrilled to once again be the beneficiary of a fundraising event hosted by the law offices of Scarzafava & Basdekis.

We, at FSA, cannot overstate the importance of this event to our ability to complete our missionL This event is unique for two reasons. First, every dollar contributed is given directly to the charity. All items and services associated with the event are either donated or absorbed by the sponsor. Second, the event is unique because all funds raised are matched by the law offices of Scarzafava & Basdekis.

The event is Wednesday, Dec. 9, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at The Law Office of Scarzafava & Basdekis, at 48 Dietz Street, Suite C, in Oneonta.

Excellent wine and hors d'oeuvres will be served. The cost is $100 per person payable to The Family Service Association. To register, call 432-9341.

There will also be a silent auction with magnificent wine and a week stay at a condo in Hilton Head, S.C..

The event is also raffling off a week stay in a wonderful home in California wine country plus airfare for two. Tickets are available for $10 each and can be purchased from any FSA board member or by calling the law office of Scarzafava & Basdekis at 432-9341.

We, at FSA, would like to thank all of the community for their support of the event and especially the following businesses and individuals for their support: Vinnie and Ruth Avanzato, Tony and Rose Avanzato, Jim and Karen Bazen, Gene and Betty Bettiol, Jim and Lee Catella, Anthony and Marcella Drago, The Daily Star, the Gelbsman families, Howie and Joyce, Craig and Mindy, Jeff and Nicole; Peter and Eileen Hill, Barbara Ives, Joseph and Linda Kehoe, Anna Marie Lusins, Dick and Trish McVinney, Dwight Pier of the Liquor Depot, Gerry and Michele Pondofino, Janet Hurley Quackenbush of Sunrise Deli, Otto and Barb Rothermel, Eric and Patty Shields, Matt and Mary Sohns, Geoff and Linda Smith, Bill and Judy Taggert, Jim and Cindy Walter, the board of directors of FSA and Wilber National Bank.

A very special "thank you" to Leo Lomangino and Monica Anderson for their very generous contribution.

Please join us on Dec. 9 to honor FSA on its 100 years of service and the generosity of a community that allowed us to continue to serve the needs of area residents.

Chicorelli can be reached at 434-8053. To write for "My turn," contact Daily Star Publisher Tanya Shalor at or 432-1000, ext. 214.