OAKHURST — For many years, the Manna House in Oakhurst has been the beneficiary of community benevolence in the form of food, clothing, financial assistance and more that it uses to provide relief to those in need in the mountain community. Now they want the community to know how much they appreciate its continuing compassion by hosting a Community Appreciation & Information Day in their parking lot on Saturday, Oct. 26 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The event will feature food prepared by Manna House volunteers, entertainment, information about Manna House for people who may be new to the community and more.
The inspiration behind the event is Troy West, now 81, who ran the Manna House for 22 years. He was succeeded in that position by Tom Nicolulis, who recently retired after eight years on the job. The new director is Bruce Bartlett, who recently served as treasurer of the Manna House for a few years. When West started as director in 1989, he said the Manna House shared space with other ministries such as those that dealt with alcohol and drug addictions. “Over time, those ministries phased out until only the Manna House remained,” he explained.
West’s daughter, Iris Polfer, said back when her dad took over the Manna House, “he saw a need for its services and proceeded to make the fledgling ministry a reality.” “At a time when enthusiasm for the ministry was waning, my dad knew how to get things done. He got more people and churches involved and did a lot of praying. He and his volunteers were a team,” she said.
Today, the Manna House has approximately 30 volunteers who stock clothing donations, pack boxes with food for people in need, sort and accept community donations and work the front counter to greet visitors and answer questions.
Next month, the Manna House will initiate one of its annual activities, Christmas bell ringing for donations in front of three Oakhurst markets: Vons, Raley’s and Grocery Outlet. The first round of bell ringing is scheduled for Nov. 16 – 22 and the second round is scheduled for Dec. 2 – 15.
If you’d like like to volunteer as a bell ringer, please call Ken Doid at 559-658-5233.
Also in November, the Manna House will announce the dates of their free annual Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners, as well as their toy giveaway for children.
The Manna House exists, according to its Mission Statement, “to provide comfort for those in need with dignity so they may know the love of Jesus Christ, our Savior.” That comfort includes food, clothing, financial assistance, advocate services, resume writing and general assistance. “And we provide all of this at no cost to recipients,” West added.
For more information about Manna House, call 559-683-6262.
You may also email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Manna House of Oakhurst
40398 Junction Drive
Oakhurst, CA 93644