The annual HOPE Center chili supper is a fundraising event to help finance activities for the numerous children who come to the Lincoln School on North 10th Street for a variety of reasons. “We’re seeing our numbers continue to increase,” said HOPE Executive Director, Lori Hammer at the outset of the dinner, held Friday, November 18th. “We have had a couple of days now where we have over 200 students coming to us after their usual classes and we’re averaging about 170 to 180 each day,” Hammer stated, as she looked at the number of kids who were in line to receive their chili dinner along with their parents in attendance.
HOPE depends on donations and grants to support the staff and volunteers who manage the Center through the school year. Now that the RE-2 District has gone to a four day week, Fridays are particularly busy. The chili supper and silent auction is one of the ways the Center raises local funds. Donations also help and those came through in a big way Friday night.
Roman Rupp, owner/operator of Rupp’s Truck and Trailer Repair and Road Service on Highway 50 in Lamar, presented a check to Hammer for $2,000. “It’s from us and several Over The Road truckers and dealerships who contributed these funds to the Center,” he explained while making the presentation. He added that the donation is to help make the school experience more meaningful for the students, to help them and the community at the same time.
A second donation of $5,000 from Colorado Mills of Lamar, presented to Hammer by manager Rick Robbins, helped increase the funds for the night to $9,200. She stated, “This is so wonderful for the students. Everyone who contributed to this night, from the volunteers in the kitchen and service line, to the kids and parents and the sponsors who donated to the silent auction, this is a really special event for the HOPE Center.”
By Russ Baldwin
About the Author: