BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — “Didn’t have a lot of money and I needed help and I didn’t know where I could go to get help,” said Diane Kuzniarek of Buffalo.
That all changed for Diane Kuzniarek when she learned about Harvest House.
“I’ve been coming for counseling for about 4 years I have had head pain and my counselor helps me every week. If it wasn’t for talking with him I don’t know where I would be,” said Kuzniarek.
Diane is one of thousands who use the Good Neighbors ministry at Harvest House for free medical and dental services.
“Especially now with health care the way it is there are some people who have insurance here but their co-pays are so incredibly high that you know we’ll see them here. Basically we see people here with no insurance for the most part,” said Dennis Wisniewski, mental health counselor volunteer.
Good Neighbors is one of 4 ministries offered by the non-profit that’s completely run by volunteers. Others include a baby and children’s ministry, and a new hope ministry for education that offers 26 certificate programs to help students living below poverty level secure a living wage job. Over 2,000 students enroll each year.
“We serve a population that is under served, the working poor,” said Ellen Tucker, Harvest House Director of Development.
To accommodate the growing number of people using the services, the building on Jefferson Avenue expanded in 2013 through a capital campaign. But more is still needed to maintain the facility
Through the non-profit is still a fixture in the community for the immediate future, people who run it want to secure it’s standing for the long term.
“This is a very special place. They treat you like family,” said Kuzniarek.
There is also another ministry on Seneca Street. People are referred to Harvest House by organizations based on need and income.
If you’d like to make a donation or volunteer, go to http://www.harvesthouse.ws/