Ballinger Cares opens resale shop

Bill Hancock
Runnels County Register
The resale shop, operated by the non-profit, Ballinger Cares, has opened in the old Runnels County Senior Citizen Center at 627 Strong Avenue.

Last year, the Ballinger food pantry, that was operated by the Ballinger Ministerial Alliance, closed their doors, although they're still helping with food, but the building and resale shop are no longer open. Now, Ballinger Cares, a nonprofit, has reopened the resale shop.

The new shop, operated by Ballinger Cares, was organized and set up by Diana Banks, Carla Campbell, Alan Rininger, Frances Chapman, Peggy Freeman, Kay Hancox, and Dot Hoelscher. The pantry is located at 627 Strong Avenue, the former home of the Ballinger Senior Citizen Center.

Freeman points out that the shop is a nonprofit, "We have the resale shop, but we don't operate it for profit. We want to continue to operate it the way the ministerial alliance did."

The panty has clothing items, in addition to kitchen wares and other items. They are looking to partner with others within the community to ensure that they can help as many people as possible. Freeman says that they pantry is working towards another goal, "We want to buy a building so that we can put equipment in there and have a bigger place for everything so that we can try an help everyone who needs it. We need a place for a big cooler and other equipment."

The organizers cite the pantry as "Ordinary people doing extraordinary things. It is because Ballinger Cares." The group released a statement regarding the pantry:

"Our town needs a new pantry. We, as a community, need a place that offers food, clothing, household items, furniture, services, and hope for people who are distressed or disadvantaged in Ballinger and the surrounding area. We need a place where outgrown clothes can be recycled, replaced furniture can be reused, and books, bedding and toys can find new homes.

The groundwork has started. Ballinger Cares, Inc., has a tax ID number, bylaws, a bank account at First National Bank, a governing board, and has applied for non-profit status. Judge Hilliard and the Runnels County Commissioners voted to allow part of the old Senior Citizen Center at 627 Strong Ave., to be used as Ballinger Cares Resale Center."

The center is open Monday thru Friday, 9 a.m - 12 p.m.

The release mentions their needs for a permanent facility, "It is the start of a dream that we hope you can be part of. We need a place to call home, a building that welcomes and invites us all to reach a little higher and serve, We need ideas, volunteers, grant writers, and input so this dream can be an integral part of the fabric of Ballinger. Our small groups is ready to expand to include others in this adventure of establishing a new pantry. The building will epitomize those two words "Ballinger Cares," because we do.... always have, always will."

You can contact anyone involved with the pantry to find out more information. Diana Banks: 325-718-8155; Carla Campbell: 325-365-6048; Frances Chapman: 325-365-1212: Peggy Freeman: 325-718-9696; Kay Hancox: 325-716-8155; Dot Hoelscher: 325-365-0464; Alan Rininger: 325-262-0555.