“Changing” Lives for the Better: June 2020

Four Hurleyville Residents and Lots of Coins
by Elaine Corrington

HURLEYVILLE, June 2020– Because purses get heavy and pockets get holes in them from too much change, hardly anyone likes to carry it around, and many people use an old glass jar to toss their change into.
You rarely find a change jar smaller than a canning jar or a peanut butter jar. But BIG? Oh yeah! There are many people who figure they only want to count the change once a year while watching a game, or when the kids need a boring and hated punishment. These people can easily work themselves up to a five-gallon jug which can’t be lifted when filled and needs to be hidden from loudly disapproving– but understanding– friends and neighbors who have been there themselves.
Once a person has counted and packaged the coins in a five-gallon jug, they rarely allow themselves to get into that predicament again, and that presented an interesting opportunity for four Hurleyville residents. During the ongoing pandemic, these four young men heard about some local coin jars that had 17 pounds of change in them that the owners wished to donate to the local Bread of Life Food Pantry at the Hurleyville United Methodist Church. But the owners didn’t want to wash and sort the coins by denomination into the rolls that would be taken by a bank.
The four men, Jason Gonzalez, Brian Connelly, Craig Eversley, and John Simon, wanted to do a good deed, and they saw that this would be an opportunity to give of their time and contribute to the increasing number of people in the community who needed food. Last week they washed, dried, sorted, and packaged the coins, and even found a dollar bill in one of the change bottles and coins from Italy in another.
The heavy load was handed over to a very grateful Katrina Jaycox, who supervises the work at the Food Pantry. Not counting the Italian coins, the 17 pounds yielded more than $230.00– and the clever ordering and generous opportunities available to the Pantry staff allow that money to purchase ten times what would be possible through regular grocery shopping.