Unsung Heroes


As someone involved with an independent nonprofit that gets all of its funding from donations, it feels as if we always have our hands out. While we try to show gratitude as much as possible, both in person and by thanking donors with letters and social media posts, there are many generous folks who donate anonymously to SPAN, and their only reward is the feeling of being kind. This column is dedicated to them:

  • The “mystery man” who periodically stops at SPAN and delivers $1,000 without identifying himself.
  • The little boy who asked for donations to SPAN at his birthday party in lieu of gifts.
  • The son who donated a large sum of money to SPAN as a Christmas gift to his mother.
  • The man who reads our wish list on our website and delivers needed items to our after-hours drop-off bin.
  • The man who spent 30 hours creating a pen-and-ink drawing for SPAN’s interview room because he wanted to “pay us back” for the assistance SPAN gave him.
  • The realtor who periodically delivers a carload of our most-needed items.
  • The woman who hand-crochets baby blankets for babies whose mothers don’t get baby showers.
  • The young mother who donated $25 because SPAN gave her assistance a year previously and she wanted to pay it forward now that she was back on her feet.
  • The man from the church and the volunteers who fix our toilet, repair our handrails, build shelves, as well as many other projects.
  • The woman who won a 50-50 raffle at her community picnic and donated her winnings to SPAN.
  • The woman who hand-knitted beautiful hats and mittens so children could be warm.
  • The SPAN volunteer who cancelled a luncheon because we were short an interviewer.
  • The young boy who held a lemonade stand and donated his earnings to SPAN.

I could write 20 more pages with examples like these, but I’ll leave you with a quote from John Wooden, who said, “The true test of a man’s character is what he does when no one is watching.”

SPAN (Serving People Across Neighborhoods) is a faith-based nonprofit food pantry and emergency services provider that has been helping local families with eviction prevention, utility turnoffs, prescription needs and food since 1990. SPAN serves Severna Park, Millersville, Arnold, Broadneck and other surrounding areas. SPAN is located behind Our Shepherd Lutheran Church at 400 Benfield Road. Hours are Monday through Thursday 10:00am-1:30pm. For more information, call 410-647-0889, email spanhelps@yahoo.com, follow SPAN on Facebook, or visit www.spanhelps.org. Financial donations may be made through the website. Food donations may be dropped off 24/7 using the storage bin behind the building.


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