January 18, 2013
Pettis County Public Administrator Charli Ackerman is getting an early boost to her annual Helping Hearts campaign, thanks to Third National Bank.
The annual fundraiser, which will launch Feb. 4 and brings in an average of about $2,000 a year, is used by Ackerman to pay incidental costs not covered by Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid or other sources for the roughly 140 clients the office serves each year.
“We are appointed by the court for people who don’t have anyone else to look out for them,” such as the elderly or the disabled, Ackerman said. “Often their needs exceed what they get from disability or Social Security so it is always an ongoing financial issue.”
Ackerman said emergency dental care remains a prime uncovered cost, though the cash donations raised through February are also used to cover things like moving costs or medical devices.
“I just paid payments for hearing aids for a gentleman on Medicaid, but hearing aids are not
covered. His own money paid for most of the cost, but we were able to help make up the difference,” Ackerman said. “I really don’t collect much money, but every little bit helps. It can be spent in a minute on some of the extra expenses that many of these folks have, so I try to be very careful with how we spend it.”
As in years past, donations will be accepted by mail or in person at the Public Administrator’s Office on the first floor of the Pettis County Courthouse, 415 S. Ohio Ave., Suite 104. Donors may sign a paper heart dedicating their donation to a loved one, and the hearts will be displayed in the courthouse lobby through the end of February.
However, Ackerman will see the fundraiser’s 10th year marked by Third National Bank, which kicked off a promotion this week in support of Helping Hearts as part of the launch of the bank’s Facebook page, facebook.com/thirdnationalbank.
From now through Valentine’s Day the bank will donate $1 for every “like” their Facebook page gets, up to $250, said Cindy Morris, the bank’s marketing director.
“We were trying to promote our Facebook page and one of the things mentioned was to run a campaign where we would donate a dollar for every “like” we get to a special cause. The first thing that came to my mind was Charli’s ‘Helping Hearts,’ ” Morris said. “This is a really good cause, and she does a good job and we just wanted to help her meet the unanticipated needs of the people she serves.”
Ackerman said she was grateful for the support and encouraged people to take Third National up on the offer.
“This is a great way to get started,” Ackerman said.
For more information, call the Public Administrator’s Office at 826-5000 ext. 434.