The League of Women Voters gives an annual Community Service Award to recognize and promote service to our community. This year the award went to Jefferson County Community Ministries, a cooperative ministry of local churches that assists Jefferson County residents in need. Community Ministries provides, in collaboration with many other area agencies, tangible assistance on a limited scale for short-term emergencies in an effort to enable people to work out permanent solutions to meet their own needs.
Community Ministries operates entirely by volunteers and donations. The organization, located on Washington Street in Charles Town, offers food through its own food pantry, clothing through its clothing closet, and shelter, through referrals. Applicants may also get emergency help with utilities, cooking & heating fuel, and medications.
The organization offers such personal assistance as job-skill coaching and budgeting, and operates two cooperative programs with the City of Ranson. The first provides work opportunities to people who have not held a job in many years. The other, Ranson Old Town Community Gardens, provides fresh produce for distribution through the food pantry and opportunities to grow fresh food with a Master Gardener,
The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy.