Rural Ministry gets a boost this holiday season

Rural Ministry gets a boost this holiday seasonThe VFW 1371 and its auxiliary in Owego presented a check to Tioga County Rural Ministry on Monday for close to $4,000. The funds are earmarked to assist with holiday food baskets; sign ups begin at Rural Ministry on Oct. 2. Pictured, from left, are Julie Dodge, Post quartermaster; Ron Traue, VVA Chapter 480 representative; Sister Mary from Tioga County Rural Ministry; Alycia Haus, Post Auxiliary member; and Lawrence Osorio, Post 1371 commander. (Photo by Wendy Post)

With holiday basket signups beginning on Oct. 2, and an expected number of close to 250 that will be in need, Tioga County Rural Ministry received a financial boost from VFW 1371 and its auxiliary to get the season rolling.

In September, the VFW held their fourth annual golf tournament at Pheasant Hill Country Club, and had 19 teams participating. A dinner followed at the post and was prepared by Mike Pratt. 

In all, $3,760 was raised from the event, which was donated to Sister Mary and earmarked for the holiday food basket giveaway.

“We had hole sponsors and door prizes too,” said Alycia Haus, Post Auxiliary member, adding, “People were very generous.”

Sister Mary of Tioga County Rural Ministry, who arrived at the VFW on Monday to receive the check, stated that 210 food baskets were prepared and delivered last year, and they expect that number to increase.

Sister Mary explained that in addition to the food basket distribution, they have volunteers that deliver to Dean Street, Long Meadows, and other areas. She noted that they are in need of volunteers to deliver the meals, and you can call 687-3021 to learn more.

Signups for holiday food baskets at Rural Ministry, located at 143 North Ave. in Owego, begin on Oct. 2 and end on Oct. 16. In order to streamline the signup process and to eliminate a long waiting period, the food pantry will be closed from Oct. 2 through Oct. 13; during these two weeks, extra volunteers will be on hand to assist with the application process. The food pantry will re-open on Monday, Oct. 16.

The distribution will take place the first three Fridays of November for Thanksgiving, and the first three Fridays in December for Christmas.

TCRM is also looking for people to sponsor families this year, and is also accepting sponsorships for seniors. The “Adopt A Senior” program, according to Sister Mary, is new.

If any family or organization is interested in “adopting” a family for the holidays, contact Sister Mary O’Brien by Monday, Oct. 16 at 687-3021 or by email to

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