Monthly Archives: September 2014

Inner City Ministry Makes Courageous Move to Improve Neighborhood: PART 2

south street

By: Katie Sobiech
South Street Ministries (SSM) has come a long way since the last time we caught up with them. Their building is hardly recognizable on the inside anymore, as they’ve remodeled it to house a community café and meeting space for recovering addicts, citizens being integrated back into society after jail/prison, or anyone just trying to stay out of trouble and improve their life.

“The café has grown as both a place of connection for folks in the margins – to folks in places of opportunity,” Joe Tucker, Executive Director of SSM, said.
“It’s encouraging to recollect on what God has done because the day-to-day can often be discouraging,” Tucker shared, “Today’s a slow day at the café, but we have a café in the first place. The challenges we have now are different than those 2-3 years ago.”

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Bath residents create endowment to support community forever


On June 17, a small group of Bath residents took the first step in creating an enduring source of support for the Bath community. With a combined gift of $10,000, seven couples established the Bath Community Fund of Akron Community Foundation, a permanent charitable fund dedicated to enriching Bath Township for generations to come.  BCF_4c

“There had been discussions about creating a community fund in Bath for years, and earlier this year, a group of us starting researching what it would take to start a fund,” said Nadine Clar, president of the Bath Homeowners Association and a member of Bath Community Fund’s advisory board.

After hearing about the creation of the fund, other residents have contributed and increased the fund’s total to $35,000. Now, advisory board members are searching for other charitably minded residents to become Founding Donors to the fund, with the goal of raising $250,000 by November.

The structure for Bath Community Fund came from the Women’s Endowment Fund of Akron Community Foundation, which also got its start in Bath. Co-founded in 1993 by Bath resident Marie Covington, the Women’s Endowment Fund began when 106 forward-thinking women each donated $1,000 to start a fund that would inspire, empower, educate and strengthen Summit County’s women and girls. Since then, the fund has grown to more than $3 million and granted nearly $670,000 back into the community.

“We wanted to do something similar for the benefit of our own community that we live in and love,” said Jody Miller Konstand, chair of Bath Community Fund’s advisory board.

The group decided that becoming an affiliate of Akron Community Foundation – a permanent endowment of more than $185 million – was the best way to protect and grow the fund’s assets.

“Our research showed that endowment funds at Akron Community Foundation generate a predictable stream of income,” said Dr. Robert Hemphill, a fund advisory board member. “The community foundation offers us the flexibility to meet immediate needs in Bath while ensuring the fund’s assets are always preserved for our long-term mission.”

Bath Community Fund is one of eight affiliate funds at Akron Community Foundation, each of which supports a geographic or issue-specific cause. Their grant-making dollars will grow through a unique blend of endowment income and annual fundraising.

“As a community foundation, we are an impartial and prudent steward of our funds’ assets,” said Akron Community Foundation President and CEO John T. Petures Jr. “We offer them the peace of mind that their funds are managed responsibly and the assurance that their donors’ gifts are used for the purpose they intended, not just now but forever. We’re proud that the Bath community has entrusted this legacy with us.”

Through annual grants to qualified nonprofit organizations, Bath Community Fund will respond to community needs, help the less fortunate, and preserve the historical and environmental legacy of Bath. Grants could potentially support projects ranging from community-wide arts programs and festivals to historic and environmental preservation.

To learn more about Bath Community Fund and becoming a founding donor, contact Jody Miller Konstand, advisory board chair, at 330-618-4477 or

About Bath Community Fund

Established in 2014 by a group of committed Bath residents, Bath Community Fund is a permanent endowment dedicated to strengthening the Bath community for current and future generations by providing leadership, fostering collaboration, and creating a legacy of charitable giving. The fund is committed to responding to community needs, helping the less fortunate, supporting local nonprofits, and reinforcing and preserving Bath’s historical and environmental legacy. The fund is currently seeking founding donors. For more information, contact Jody Miller Konstand, Bath Community Fund advisory board chair, at 330-618-4477 or

About Akron Community Foundation

Celebrating 59 years of building community philanthropy, Akron Community Foundation embraces and enhances the work of charitable people who make a permanent commitment to the good of the community. In 1955, a $1 million bequest from the estate of Edwin Shaw established the community foundation. Today, it is a philanthropic endowment of more than $185 million with a growing family of more than 450 funds established by charitable people and organizations from all walks of life. The community foundation welcomes gifts of all kinds, including cash, bequests, stock, real estate, life insurance and retirement assets, just to name a few. To date, the community foundation’s funds have awarded more than $114 million in grants to qualified nonprofit organizations. For more information about Akron Community Foundation or to learn more about creating your own charitable fund, call 330-376-8522 or visit

Inner City Ministry Makes Courageous Moves to Improve Neighborhood Part One







By: Katie Sobiech

How many people do you know who would leave their comfortable lifestyle, steady job and white picket fence neighborhood to move into, arguably, one of the most dangerous areas in Akron?

A place many wouldn’t even prefer to drive through, let alone live in?

Not many, or even one, right?

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New Permanent Supportive Housing Opens in Akron (Part 2)

By: Katie Sobiech

New Permanent Supportive Housing

Previously, we shared about the opening of The Commons at Madeline Park, a brand-new, 60 unit, Permanent Supportive Housing (PSH) facility for the homeless, mentally ill, disabled, and veterans.

According to experts in this area, PSH may be the best new route to go in terms of housing people facing these particular circumstances.
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