FaithLink highlights caregivers work

PARKERSBURG – Praising those who help others live independently was part of the “Tell Me Your Story” fundraiser for FaithLink Thursday night.

Karyl Krulicki, director of FaithLink, said the program was formed in 1996 by a group representing the Wood County Ministerial Alliance and the Volunteer Action Center.

“We are an interfaith volunteer caregiver program,” she said. “We help those who are elderly, or with a physical disability or chronic illness maintain their independence as long as possible.”

Krulicki said the organization has more than 300 clients, primarily in Wood County, and 189 volunteers giving more than 4,000 hours of service. They drove more than 41,000 miles to meet transportation needs.

Krulicki said the dinner at Stout Memorial United Methodist Church is the annual fundraiser.

For the 2014 program the theme chosen was “Tell Me Your Story.” Actors Guild of Parkersburg members presented a readers theater presentation “Could We Get A Little Help Here?” about the children of elderly parents dealing with the parents’ needs and showing older people still have a lot to give or a story to tell.

After the play the Rev. Chrissy Ruehl, associate pastor at Stout Memorial United Methodist Church, said the end of the program where she spoke was to answer the question asked in the title of the readers theater.

“We talk about the role of FaithLink in the community,” she said. “FaithLink is part of the story and they understand the why of why we are here.

“We are here to serve others, to be in community to others and to love others and FaithLink gets that idea.”

Krulicki said FaithLink is a local organization affiliated with the National Volunteer Care Giver Network which began as a faith-in-action program.

The goals of FaithLink are to enhance independence and quality of life for those served, identify individuals in the community who would benefit from their services, establish a link between care receivers and volunteers, to recruit, train and support volunteers, to create public awareness of Faith Link services and volunteer opportunities, to incorporate faith-based and community organizations into the work of FaithLink and to stabilize and increase FaithLink’s financial base, Krulicki said.