Hearthwarming Sunday supports Fuel Fund for the Elderly

Mountain Empire Older Citizens is asking area churches and individuals to participate in Hearthwarming Sunday, a midwinter fundraiser for the Emergency Fuel Fund for the Elderly.

The annual event is held on the Sunday closest to Valentine’s Day. This year’s Hearthwarming Sunday is Feb. 13. It falls at a critical time for the fuel fund, which assists older adults in Wise, Lee and Scott counties and the City of Norton with emergency heating expenses.

Since Nov. 1, when the program began accepting applications for the 2021-2022 season, the Emergency Fuel Fund has already helped 768 individuals, resulting in expenses of $154,380. Fuel assistance requests increase during the coldest months, but the fund begins to run low. Hearthwarming Sunday contributions allow MEOC to continue fulfilling requests through winter’s end.

Churches and individuals assist in the way that works best for them. Some churches collect special love offerings from their congregations, while others take on Hearthwarming Sunday as a benevolence project.

The outpouring of love and generosity from the community’s faith organizations each year is a blessing to the Emergency Fuel Fund and those it assists, said MEOC Emergency Services Director Marsha Craiger.

“I am always overwhelmed by the community’s support. We are so grateful to everyone who donates. Every cent goes directly to help our frailest and most vulnerable neighbors and friends,” said Craiger.

All contributions benefit residents in MEOC’s service area. Donations will never be used to pay for any administrative costs whatsoever. Heating fuels are also purchased from local vendors.

Want more information? Contact Marsha Craiger at (276) 523-4202 or mcraiger@meoc.org.

Want to donate?

Online: Click here. You may make a one-time or recurring contribution.

By mail: Send to MEOC, ATTN: Emergency Fuel Fund, P.O. Box 888, Big Stone Gap, VA 24219.