Dublin Villager

Dublin CAN

Database will help connect people in need with services

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For years organizations such as the Dublin Food Pantry and Welcome Warehouse have been connecting people in need with services they need.

But those groups and others are looking to expand their reach.

Dublin churches and social services organizations have been working on a database to connect people in need with services and will launch the new initiative with an event at 6:30-8 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 28, in Discover Christian Church, 2900 Martin Road.

"It started with a breakfast that Welcome Warehouse sponsored back in 2012 for local pastors and out of that formed a task force that had been meeting and includes about a dozen pastors and representative from local community organizations like Dublin Kiwanis, the Dublin Food Pantry, Syntero which used to be the Dublin Counseling Center and Welcome Warehouse," said Jean Griffith, Welcome Warehouse executive director.

"We met several times to try to figure out how we can work better together to serve families in the Dublin community."

A partnership has formed recently between Welcome Warehouse and the Dublin Food Pantry.

Welcome Warehouse Board Member Laura Troup said a network of services was the next logical step.

"Our long-term vision is to work smarter together," Troup said.

"The first initiative is Dublin CAN (Community Asset Network)," she said. "It's a one-stop shop for people who need help and give help."

Dublin CAN will include a searchable database of area churches, organizations and social services and their resources, contact information, eligibility requirements and hours, Griffith said.

"We want it to be very comprehensive because there is so much out there, so much being offered in Dublin," she said. "A lot of times people don't know about it."

"People walk in our doors and ask for help and we don't know how to help them," Troup agreed.

"If you just need diapers, type in the word and find a church or group that has diapers and can assist you."

HandsOn Central Ohio will help Dublin CAN with setting up the database, which is modeled after a similar and successful resource used in Hilliard, Troup said.

"It's a win-win for the community," Troup said.

"The community that Welcome Warehouse and the Dublin Food Pantry serves is anyone in the school district and that includes Columbus students.

"If our children are healthy, fed, clothed, getting sleep and if their parents are getting the resources they need, our schools will be so much better," Troup said.

"And, our city will be so much better."

The Jan. 28 kickoff, open to all, will include guest speaker Robert Caldwell who will talk about holistic community development, Griffith said.

"Our goal is to connect people and present the idea for Dublin CAN and generate some excitement and hopefully get people to participate in Dublin CAN," Griffith said.

"We will give organizations a chance to share what they do and how they help people. We'll give others the opportunity to learn what's out there."

RSVPs for the kickoff are not required, but can be done by emailing executivedirector@welcomewarehouse.org. Questions and ideas can also be sent via email to that address.

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