New Sumner non-profit organization Bridges Community Resource Services, Inc. is formed

Debbie and Rachel Reed have started new charity organization.

by Amber Schmitz, Sumner Newscow — Seeing a need for more direct assistance with Sumner County residents, Debbie Reed branched out from Catholic Charities with her daughter, Rachel Reed, to form a new non-profit organization.

Bridges Community Resource Services, Inc., or Bridges for short, became incorporated in March.  Reed was with Catholic Charities for five years, being with them from their beginning here.

“I saw that the need outweighed the resources in the county, and I wanted to be able to help more people,” said Debbie Reed. “Catholic Charities really inspired me.”

Reed brings 37 years of experience in social services, including MRDD behavioral psychology.

“I like to talk to the client and find out the underlying issues, and how best to help people,” Reed said.

Rachel has accounting experience, and owns a firm in Wichita, and will be doing all of the paperwork for the business.

Bridges has developed a relationship with county agencies, as well as Wichita, to assist people in finding the resources that they need. They have applied for government grants and funding to get their business off the ground.

“We will be offering very diverse services,” Reed said. “We don’t want anyone to think they’ve hit a brick wall.”

They will also be offering education classes and payee services. If they can’t help you, they can point you in the right direction toward the resource group that can. Their focus is community collaboration.

“What we’re trying to do is if for instance if someone needs new back-to-school clothes for their, we will offer a Walmart gift card so they can purchase what they need,” Rachel Reed said. “Or if they need bills paid, we can help them short term.”

They are planning to hold a fundraiser to raise awareness and take donations. Eventually, they would like to find a building to call home. All of the services and classes they will offer will be completely free of charge.

With a mission statement of “Bridging hearts, bridging hope,” Reed said their purpose is to put the tools in people’s hands to help them succeed in life. The name Bridges, Reed said, comes from helping people cross the bridge from poverty to stability.

“We are so appreciative to have the support of the other agencies who are working with us,” Reed said.

Currently, they have a Facebook page established, which is a work in progress, but the best way to contact Bridges until they get up and running is through the e-mail: [email protected].

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