COLUMBIA - With this extreme heat, the Voluntary Action Center said Friday it has given out 23 fans to people this week alone. A twelve -year-old names Achilles came to the office Friday with his mother to sign up for a football program, and he got a fan for his family, too.
"We want to get another fan so that we can cool off at home. And our other fans are not working anymore," Achilles said.
Achilles' mother explained that they have air-conditioner at home, but the electricity is too expensive for them to run it.
Every year, the center partners with the KOMU 8 Fan Club and Lowe's to provide fans for the families who are in need during the hot summer months.
Logan Park, the social service specialist at the center, said donations at Lowe's this year have doubled compared with last year. The center has given out 222 fans so far this summer. The center picked up more fans Friday morning at Lowe's since the donation box was full.
About 50 to 70 fans are stacked in the office and waiting for people who meet the qualifications to pick up. Most fans are giving to families with small children, pregnant women, the elderly, or anyone receiving any kind of social security income.
Many people donated fans at Lowe's. Park said the they've collected 140 fans from the donations Lowe's so far this summer. People can also go to the Voluntary Action Center's office to give a fan or make a monetary donation.
"We want to make sure we can get many fans to individuals and households in Boone County as we can this summer as it is so hot," Park said.
People who go to the office to pick up the fans need to bring their ID, proof of Boone County residency and proof of all income.
Park said the center uses the standard of about 150% of the federal poverty guideline and is flexible with that test. He said the key is to give the fans to those who are most in need.
People who need a fan at home or want to make a donation can contact the Voluntary Action Center at 573-874-2273, or visit their office at 403A Vandiver Drive in Columbia.