Logan County Good Samaritan has served the people of Logan County for over 17 years with the support of other Logan Countians. In 2013, LCGS provided a variety of programs including food, financial assistance, water discounts and income tax preparation to over 1,087 households which included 2,453 people. Referrals to other agencies are frequently given in addition to whichever service is provided.
LCGS provided 569 financial requests to 511 different households. The total amount of financial assistance was $56,128.15 with an average cost of $98.64 per service. This was an increase of $5,000 over 2012. As utility expenses rise, the requests for assistance continue to be for greater amounts and more frequent.
On average, LCGS served 450 households per month with food assistance, distributing almost 300,000 pounds of food. Last year, 949 different households (2,076 people) received food from LCGS. Each year, we ask our food recipients to complete a survey. Seventy-seven percent said they visit our food bank six or more times a year. More than one in four respondents reported their primary source of food was from food banks. Almost two out of three (64%),said they have had to choose between buying food or paying for other needs such as medications, heating fuel, and rent.
LCGS provides two services through partnerships with the City of Russellville and the Barren River Asset Building Coalition (BRABC). The Russellville City Water Discount Program is a partnership between the City and LCGS where the City provides a $10 per month discount to households LCGS certifies as meeting the requirements. During the year, this discount was provided to 86 different households. This provided $9,460 in savings to aged or disabled, low-income households.
The partnership between BRABC, LCGS and the IRS is to prepare and E-file Federal and State taxes for low-income households for free. It also provides information on programs to help build financial stability. We filed 204 current year federal tax returns. Including spouses, dependants, and non-dependent children, these filings included 342 people. Sixteen percent of these filers received unemployment during the year. The average AGI was $17,633. Ninety-six percent of these filers received a refund. The Earned Income amount was claimed by 38% of these filers. There were 23 assisted self filers. A very low estimate of the average amount of money saved in just tax preparation fees would be approximately $150 per household providing at least $34,800 in savings. LCGS is always looking for innovative ways to benefit our clients and we feel these partnerships help achieve this goal.
In the past few years, there has been a trend toward clients having greater needs due to increases in utility costs. Last year, LCGS served 239 households (511 people) who had never been to LCGS for assistance before. We expect this trend to continue resulting in higher costs per service rendered. LCGS has never received any government funding although we do distribute some government provided foods. LCGS is and always has been supported by other Logan County citizens. Please consider supporting LCGS either through your church, with private donations or by attending fundraisers like the upcoming Fish Fry on March 29th at First Baptist Church on 6th and Main in Russellville.