Tenino Community Service Center Nominated for an Economic Courage Award
Economic courage could be defined as a leader, a business, nonprofit and or organization that, while facing economic uncertainty and a radical retraction of “business as usual,” took extraordinary steps to provide a service, a product, and or a support service that made a positive impact to the community and or employees of their organization. These individuals took economic risks to continue providing a service, product and or resource in the face of unprecedented economic uncertainty. Showing the ability to adapt, change and thrive during uncertainty. The Thurston EDC awarded Economic Courage Awards at the Hootenanny on July 19.
Learn more here: https://thurstonedc.com/hootenanny/.
During the past year, the Tenino Community Service Center showed Economic Courage and has been nominated for an Economic Courage Award.
We asked the team at the Tenino Community Service Center to answer some questions about the past year and how the business took extraordinary steps to impact our community positively. Their answers are below.
What year was your business/organization established?
In 2002 it became the nonprofit Tenino Community Service Center; however, it has been around for more than 40 years. Robin Rudy and Pat Haller founded Tenino Food Bank Plus to help feed and clothe kids that needed it with the Tenino School District. Unfortunately, Robin passed away in the winter of 2017. However, Pat is still a viable powerhouse within the organization, holding things together as CFO. It was not until 2002 that the team obtained the name Tenino Community Service Center when they received their official nonprofit status.
How many employees do you have?
There are two part-time employees and 20 volunteers.
Is your reach local, regional or national?
Tenino/Bucoda and the surrounding Tenino School District. However, we will serve anyone in need.
What does your business do?
We provide emergency food, pet food, and personal and care items twice a week. This is done through doorstep deliveries and drive-through pick-ups.
What services do you provide?
v Senior and Shut-in Food Delivery Every Tuesday for Tenino and Every Thursday for Bucoda
v Year Round, Weekly Kids Bac-Pac Food Program
v Senior Commodity Food program
v Hosting COVID Vaccine and Testing Clinics
v Weekly Food Distribution
v Tenino 9 am to Noon every Tuesday and Thursday
v Summer Bucoda Kid Lunch Program
v Medical Equipment Bank
v Assistance to Veterans and Their Family through The Veterans Closet
v Disaster Preparedness Help (fire, flood, suppling cooling stations, power outages)
v Christmas House
v THS Scholarship Fund
v Salvation Army Extension with Utilities Help
v Salvation Army Summer Camp
v Tenino Winterfest
What specific niche does your business fill in this community?
We fill the gaps with emergency food, diapers (formula when we have it), and pet food. Tenino Community Service Center puts on resource fairs. It connects folks with other agencies when they need help outside our capabilities. We provide water to the Tenino Police Department for high heat and other emergencies. We are here to partner with Thurston County Health Department Emergency Management to give them a place to provide vaccines and testing for COVID.
What are some key elements you attribute to your business’s success?
Our ability to think outside the box and stay ahead of things within our community so we can be there when we are needed the most. As South Thurston County expands, so must Tenino Community Service Center. We need to think on our feet, quickly adjust, and adequately serve our communities and beyond. COVID reminded us that life could be a rollercoaster and that we are strapped in and ready for the ride.