Heart to Heart has operated for more than 27 years under the auspices of St. Gertrude Parish, serving the elderly of Edgewater regardless of religious affiliation or lack thereof. The mission is to help seniors who need minimal assistance to enable them to remain independent in their home.
Heart to Heart completes assessments and connects them to community services and agencies that can assist them with financial and home care functions. In addition, Heart to Heart volunteers offer a limited range of services including well-being checks, rides to doctor appointments, religious services, social events, grocery shopping, picking up prescriptions to name a few. No fees are charged for these services.
Currently Heart to Heart does not have the financial resources to operate efficiently from a financial perspective. Heart to Heart had received additional operating funding through a grant. The grant allowed for the hiring of a part-time staff member who assisted with the fundraising and grant writing activities. The Heart to Heart program did not renew the grant due to the grant’s criteria of expanding the programs catchment area and scope or services. Heart to Heart felt that the program was unable to effectively support the expanded responsibilities hence declined the funding.
The program is directed by two paid staff–Mary Ann Collins, MSW who directs the program as well as attends to the social service needs of the participants and a part-time person who takes, calls, schedules volunteers, manages the lending closet (wheelchairs, shower seats, canes). It should be noted that the lending closet is a unique offering and may be the only one of its kind in the city.
Because Heart to Heart is a ministry/program which serves the larger community it is in a position to solicit funds from the larger community and possible larger Chicago area. The program however, lacks the resources to do so. Heart to Heart cannot continue as is with limited resources, both financial and human (staff and volunteers) as the demand for such services from the communities aging population continues to grow.
Heart to Heart is a part of our vibrant ministry for the parish and community.
In addition, Heart to Heart offers a great lending closet that allo