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October 25, 2012

Angels see increase in those in need

A community-based group in Cooperstown has been helping out those less fortunate for about eight years and is close to becoming a nonprofit organization. 

The Angel Network offers families with children in the Cooperstown School District assistance with food, daily living necessities as well as Christmas and holiday gifts. The group started off very small, but now consists of board members and a fundraising committee. 

In the past six years, the number of families helped has gone from 15 to more than 45, according to member Alyssa McGoldrick.

“During this economic downturn our requests from families have increased tremendously,” McGoldrick said.

She said The Angel Network has grown from 30 to more than 400 contacts. 

“We have people as far away as Los Angeles on our list who periodically drop a check in the mail,” McGoldrick said. 

Items The Angel Network has given away include clothing, school supplies, funds to help student attend summer school and camps, hygiene products, groceries and gas cards. 

Christmas is particularly a busy time of year for The Angel Network. Last year,the group was able to help 33 families and more than 70 children. The Angel Network has begun the process of compiling requests for assistance for the Christmas/holiday season. 

CCS guidance counselors and teachers act as liaisons between students in need and members of the Angel Network. Requested items are anonymously posted via email to members of the Angel Network. Angel Network community members then donate these requested items. To contact the organization, email cooperstownangel@yahoo.com. 

“Confidentiality is something we all feel really strongly about,” said Katie Baldo, CCS guidance counselor. 

“One thing that I feel really good about is that we help a lot of families through transition times such as families who are going through medical emergencies, deaths and even loss of jobs,” she continued.

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