Troy nonprofit puts out call for support after loss of supplies

By: Brendan Losinski | Troy Times | Published February 9, 2023

 The nonprofit Troy People Concerned is asking for donations of materials such as backpacks, notebooks, pens, pencils and crayons after many of their donated and purchased supplies were destroyed due to a burst water pipe.

The nonprofit Troy People Concerned is asking for donations of materials such as backpacks, notebooks, pens, pencils and crayons after many of their donated and purchased supplies were destroyed due to a burst water pipe.

Photo provided by Cindy Stewart


TROY — For more than 50 years, the nonprofit Troy People Concerned has helped those in need in the Troy community through financial difficulties, hard times and setbacks.

Now they are asking the community to help them recover following a setback of their own.

Following a burst water pipe, much of the materials the organization had gathered to distribute to local residents or help with its fundraisers was destroyed. Board Secretary Cindy Stewart said these materials are crucial with helping continue Troy People Concerned’s mission of helping others.

“Troy People Concerned has an office at Alliance Mobile Health, which they donate to us. That way, all our money can go to those in need,” explained Stewart. “When the weather got really cold, a pipe burst, and our storage room at their facility was flooded. We were storing the supplies for our backpacks program for back-to-school in August. The backpacks are filled with school supplies, which people or educators can call and request if there is a family in need. Everything we had for that was destroyed.”

She added that this is the first time the organization has reached out for support like this.

“With Troy People Concerned being around for more than 50 years, we have helped so many people in need,” Stewart said. “This is the first time we are putting out an appeal that we need help ourselves so we can keep helping our friends and neighbors in the city of Troy.”

Troy People Concerned President George Huston said he was devastated when he learned the news, but he knew that he and the other members had to jump into action to prevent it from hampering their efforts.

“My first reaction was wondering if it was covered by insurance and how it would impact us going forward,” he remarked. “I was worried that there would need to be sacrifices that we might have to make. … We consider Troy People Concerned as being neighbors helping neighbors. People have dignity, and we don’t want to diminish their dignity, so we do what we do discreetly, and whatever we do is help and not a handout.”

Stewart said the amount destroyed wasn’t enough to make an insurance claim, but that it could still result in helping far fewer people than they would be able to otherwise. She is hoping those in the Troy area will lend them a hand with either a monetary or supply donation.

“We would love school supplies like notebooks, pens, pencils and crayons for our backpack giveaways in the summer. We also are looking for gift cards to places like Kroger or Meijer so they can buy groceries. We always accept monetary donations. People often need help with a mortgage or rent, and we can help them in those situations,” she said. “We also have a pasta fundraising dinner once a year, and our decorations and supplies were in that room, and they also were ruined. … Help in that area also would be welcome.”

Stewart hopes that if there is a silver lining to all of this, it will remind members of the community that Troy People Concerned is a resource for people and that it is there both as a means of help and an outlet for those who wish to aid others.

“Troy People Concerned has been around for 50 years. It was founded by local churches and pastors, and we have carried on since then. I have been on the board for about 15 years. Our president is a local pastor, and different people from the community (are) on the board, and we have one part-time person on staff. People can request help with utility aid by (having us) advise them. We can also help them financially with utility bills or if they have a medical condition. We’re a short-term solution for those who find themselves in dire need.”

Huston said the need is real, and he hopes those who have supported them in the past will continue to aid them now.

“I want to thank all the Troy residents who have faithfully come through over the years,” he remarked. “What we have experienced has really been a setback, and it is hindering our ability to respond to certain needs right now. I would like people, if they are willing, to volunteer or provide a contribution. Our needs increase dramatically as the weather turns cold.”