Donna Simone has always been aware of those in need of help. Whether it’s neighbors, friends, or complete strangers, she says that it “hurts to see [her] neighbor suffering.”
That’s why she is determined to assist people who have been unexpectedly forced into bad situations.
Since August 2011, she has been reaching out to help people through difficult times with Yorktown Love In Action.
The program is designed to “assist people in our community who have fallen on difficult times, whether due to an accident, sickness, injury, death in the family, abuse, separation, fire, acts of nature, or anything else beyond their control,” Simone explained.
As the mother of two kids, Donna knows what it takes to not only survive but to push forward as well. She considers herself “a fighter, a survivor,” but she has always wanted to know that if something happened to her “there would be a good Samaritan to help [her kids].”
Yorktown Love In Action is a non-profit organization, which can be very hard at times, Simone said – they don’t have enough money to help everybody they would like to reach out to.
“We have a few [monthly sponsors] but not nearly the amount we need., Simone said.
Anybody age 13 and up is encouraged to volunteer, and it can serve as a great source of community service, she said.
“We have people donating items to the thrift store but we need more shoppers, and we need volunteers to help in many aspects.,” Simone continued.
YLIA needs people to help with the store, pick up items and appliances, drop off items at families’ houses, and collect clothes, just to list a few. They also are looking for a bookkeeper and a graphic designer.
The organization currently tends to help pay utility bills and mortgages, and provides “compassion, solace, and love” along the way. Simone said.
In order to continue this, though, Yorktown Love In Action really needs “more businesses sponsoring [our] ‘Hearts of Faith’ and sponsoring fundraisers.” Donna adds.
One challenge YLIA has had to face is the fact that the organization can’t help everybody who asks. It may be because they don’t meet the organization’s requirements, or it may be because YLIA doesn’t have enough money to help.
In order to accept a family as a “Yorktown Love In Action” family and assist with their bills, they “must be able to get them into the financial safe zone and out of debt within one year,” Simone said.
“I cry when I have to say no to someone, but I want the community to know and be sure that the money they are donating to YLIA is definitely being used properly.” Donna said.
If they won’t be able to help a family in a year’s time span, the money that was used to try to assist the family may end up wasted, she said – so it’s better to save it for those who they can ensure will be helped in enough time.
Their motto is “our Love is their Hope with Faith in others.” Donna said her favorite part of Yorktown Love In Action is getting to know that she is making a difference in her neighbors’ lives.
Anybody who has suffered from a circumstance out of his or her control and now needs financial help but isn’t getting government assistance or stuck in too much debt is encouraged to reach out to YLIA.
Fundraising events include “Fitness of Faith,” “Food of Faith,” “Car Wash of Faith,” and “Heart of Faith.”
To contact Donna Simone, call 914-490-3966 or send an email to email@example.com
By Alyssa Zack