Pathway of Hope is a program offered through The Salvation Army in Chillicothe and its goal is to provide individualized services to families with children who want to take action to break the cycle of crisis and vulnerability that repeats generation after generation.
Pathway of Hope is a program offered through The Salvation Army in Chillicothe and its goal is to provide individualized services to families with children who want to take action to break the cycle of crisis and vulnerability that repeats generation after generation. The program seeks to address the root causes of poverty and is blended with The Salvation Army’s history of compassionate serving. “By helping families overcome challenges like unemployment, unstable housing, and lack of education, we can lead families down a path toward increased stability and, ultimately, self-sufficiency,” said Lynda Snuffer, case manager of The Salvation Army. Through involvement with Pathway of Hope, families are introduced to services available within The Salvation Army as well as other areas in the community that offer a network of support and a sense of community. Snuffer became case manager in June and the Pathway of Hope is one area in which she will be working. Through the program, she will focus on a holistic approach and provide spiritual guidance in areas of job training, health services, childcare and education, housing options, legal services, and more. “We want to provide people with the tools they need for them to become more self-sufficient,” Snuffer said. In order to qualify for the program, there must be at least one child under the age of 18 in the household. The adult/s in the household must have the desire to set goals and work toward the goals to improve their current situation. “Maybe they need a full-time job, but they don’t have a GED,” Snuffer said. They will then be given assistance for them to learn what they need to do to obtain a GED. Once they have met the goal in learning what they need to do to obtain a GED, the next goal to be set may be actually registering for GED classes. Once enrolled in the Pathway of Hope program, the individuals will meet with Snuffer or Lt. Shannon Forney regularly to help decide on the next goal. “Maybe they need counseling,” Snuffer said. “We will help them find a counselor. Maybe, they need help with budgeting, health or nutrition... Our goal is to heal the situation and help people become self-sufficient members of society.” “We want the community to know we are here,” Snuffer said. “We are open to suggestions and want to collaborate on ideas.” The Salvation Army also provides a food pantry to people in need. The pantry is open every Wednesday and Thursday, from 1 until 4 p.m. at The Salvation Army, 621 Mohawk. Donations are accepted at any time, Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. until 4 p.m., with the office closed from noon until 1 p.m. Individuals may seek food pantry assistance once every 30 days; however, they may obtain bread on Wednesdays the Thursdays while supplies last. Snuffer noted that within the last couple weeks, there had been an increase of 20 households seeking food pantry assistance. She attributed that increase, in part, to an increase in awareness following the Backpack Bonanza when school supplies were given to families needing assistance. The pantry has significant need at this time for peanut butter, meats (canned tuna and canned chicken), cereal, easy-to-prepare items, breakfast bars, and toaster pastries. Snuffer noted that in some cases, individuals do not have the means to cook food or may even be homeless. To qualify for the food pantry, individuals must be from Livingston or Grundy counties. They must provide a photo ID and a Social Security Card. To learn more about the Pathway of Hope program or about the food pantry, contact Lynda Snuffer at 660-646-3538. The Salvation Army is working to spread awareness of the charity’s services and will be visible during several upcoming events. Important dates and events coming up include: • Missouri Days Oct. 19-20 in Trenton, where The Salvation Army will be serving beverages. • Christmas Applications for families and Christmas Baskets will be at The Salvation Army in Chillicothe and at First Christian Church in Trenton. This will be for adopting families and food baskets. Christmas applications will be accepted Oct. 23-27 in Chillicothe; and from Oct. 30-Nov. 3, and Nov. 6-10 in Chillicothe and Trenton. • The Salvation Army will host a fund-raising pancake breakfast at Applebee’s from 8 until 10 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 4. Tickets are $8, with $1 of each ticket going to Applebee’s and the remainder going to The Salvation Army to work toward helping people in the Livingston and Grundy areas. • The Angel Tree will be set up at Wal-Mart for individuals to shop for Christmas gifts for local people in need. • Christmas Kettle Ringers will be sought to help with the red kettle campaign, which will begin in mid-November. • Facebook: The Salvation Army keeps an updated post of items needed for the food pantry on its Facebook page. The local Salvation Army office is looking foward to January 30, when it celebrates its 130th anniversary in Chillicothe. “We look forward to celebrating with the community throughout the year,” Snuffer said. As case manager, Snuffer is in charge of working with those in the community who would like to volunteer for The Salvation Army, whether individually or as a group to get them registered and placed in positions. “We will be looking for individuals to help with bell-ringing during the Christmas season as well as assisting with the Christmas packages for families,” she said. Snuffer was born and raised on a farm in rural Trenton. She is the daughter of Lewis and Inis Lynch. She and her husband of 33 years have four adult children and six granddaughters. Snuffer owned and directed Romper Room Preschool and Child Care for about 22 years with her husband. She completed her degree in child and family studies at CMU and then completed her master’s in education, with an emphasis in early childhood. Snuffer taught early childhood development in higher education full-time, and for eight years as an adjunct for three years. “God provided for me to take about a year off and look for a position where I could work with families and share my faith and I came upon this position, prayed and truly believe this is where I belong,” Snuffer said. “I truly enjoy working with people and this is giving me the opportunity to do just that. “Lt. Forney and I look forward to helping to meet the needs of our communities both directly and in collaboration with the other individuals, churches and organizations,” Snuffer said.