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Neighbor News
   Summer 2016   
"Responding in a Christ-like way to our neighbors in need"
In This Issue
Look What's Happening Around Our Neighborhood!
Come to the Blount County Library and check out our display during the month of September

Moonlight Mile -September 23rd 10:15pm; registration $10 (glow in the dark tee-shirt included)

Spirit of Good Neighbors Awards- Thursday November 3   Nominations are being accepted September 15 through October 16th

By The Numbers ...
January -July 2016

Neighbors Served
Amount disbursed on behalf of Neighbors
Volunteer Hours Given
Number of Calls Received
Follow up Calls Completed
Neighbors Seen for the First Time!
Moonlight Mile!
Run, walk or shuffle....... Join us for the return of a great event! Friday evening September 23rd at Maryville High School (in front of the gym) participants will set out on a mile run in the moonlight.

Early registration ends on September 15th. Registration fee is $10 Registration on the night of is $15. Included in the fee is an awesome glow in the dark tee-shirt. Only a few late registration tee-shirts will be available.
Support a great cause and have a great time! Race ends in downtown Maryville.
To enter the race:
or check out Maryville Moonlight Mile on Facebook!
How Can You Help?
  • Make sure your church pastor and office staff knows about Good Neighbors.

  • Call GN when you need help.

  • If you encounter a neighbor who is struggling, please refer them to Good Neighbors.

  • If you are not in a position to give your time and talents to Good Neighbors, please consider making a financial contribution. All donations are tax deductible.

  • Attend Good Neighbor benefits and fundraising activities 

Good Neighbors is a 501(c)3 community ministry. Our mission is to help lift our Blount County neighbors out of a temporary crisis.

Good Neighbors provides resources to maintain and/or increase the ability of our neighbors to cope with the challenges of everyday life. We do this in an atmosphere of love and respect, building partnerships through which Christ's love can grow and by advocating for social justice within Blount County. Good Neighbors is funded by local area churches, individuals, BCEAC, United Way and other civic groups.



United way logo  

"What's Going On Here?"
During the month of September, Good Neighbors will have our own display at the Blount County Public Library! Come check it out! You will surely see what is going on here?". Information about the Moonlight Mile and the Spirit of Good Neighbors Awards Dinner  (both included in this newsletter) will be available as well as "Gracie, the piggy bank" who tells our story in short, easy to remember words! If you haven't been to the library lately, we encourage you to head on over there and see what a great library Blount County has!

2016 Board Members
Eric Weatherbee, Chair
Diana Curtis, Vice Chair
Cynthia Freeman, Secretary 
Stuart Hammond, Treasurer
Suzie Cutshaw
Tanya Jones
Barbara Foster
Bryan Irwin
Reese Wills
Virginia Hardwick
Dan Young
Michelle Nuchols
Jim Snyder
Sarah Thaemert
Susanna Waters



9:00 AM - 1:00 PM


9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
   Please call    865.681.5420

for an appointment  

From Where I Sit...
  Lisa Blackwood,
Executive Director  

If you are up just early enough you can begin to feel the change in the air, a whisper of fall teasing us. I know it gets hot and it gets hot early, but the quiet of the morning (yes, there really is a 5:00 in the morning) brings a hint of the sounds and feel of autumn. This fall is going to be quite a relief. These 95 degree days are difficult for our neighbors. Many live with only fans and those with air conditioning live in fear of the next bill. School has started and the school fees, new shoes and clothes (even at a discount or used) are a stretch. It is a difficult time of year for many families. 
For some reason these last few months many calls have come our way because families and individuals are homeless. Often these calls are from Veterans. Their stories are heartbreaking and the only way GN can help is in a collaborative effort with other agencies and programs. It truly takes a village to care for the hurting and homeless. Blount County is experiencing more and more people caught in this situation. We are thankful for our partner agencies and donors who provide the means and networking to make a difference.
Recently we had a family who found themselves in a crisis, losing their home via eviction, no jobs, recent loss of a young family member, incarceration of another and unexpected (though a joy) addition of a teen grandchild to the household. If that wasn't hard enough, cancer had become a part of their daily lives by striking one of the adults in two forms. After meeting with a coach, several phone calls of support, this family worked carefully through the plan laid out for them. Using food pantries, social/case workers from other agencies, Welcome Table, Staffing Solutions (two-part time jobs secured) and Community Action this family was ready to move out in the nick of time. Wait, what about the actual moving process? They could not afford movers for the furniture and were storing furniture for a couple of weeks until they were able to actually move into a new place. What to do, what to do? Enter Maryville College and the Community Engagement Staff! It was a beautiful sight to see so many student athletes show up to help this family. Just one of many stories of how our community makes a difference working side by side!
So, from where I sit on this day, I see a bright future. Of course there will be some hard days, but I know that together Good Neighbors will continue to make a difference by working for a better Blount County where our neighbors are not numbers but humans, people whose lives can be made better through community and care.
Just pondering...Lisa


Stories of Hope
Making A Difference in Our Neighbors' Lives
April came to Good Neighbors seeking assistance on a utility bill. She has a large family with several children. Her husband had been employed at a local industry but had been laid off "again". He just started a new job and there has been a gap in his pay cycle. The utility bill is due before his first pay check. Normally April manages the budget very well. With no debt and the assistance of food stamps they do not need to use food pantries. GN was able to help them make a plan for success and with a small amount of assistance from GN they were able to pay the utility bill on time. Three months later when GN followed up this household was doing well. April had even started her own business! Rent and utilities were up to date and life is good!
Lindsey first came to GN two years ago. She had never completed high school and the coach encouraged her to work toward her GED. As a single soon to be parent, she was not working at that time. Later that year she did reach that goal and obtained her GED. In July she came to GN seeking assistance with her utility bill. The first news she had for the coach was that she had her GED and a better job. She could not thank the coach enough for the encouragement and for believing that she could reach that goal! Currently she is enrolled in a CNA class and is hoping to achieve even higher goals in the medical field! She is interested in budgeting classes and seems to be doing very well. She is working with Families First to secure child support. GN paid a small part of her utility bill and she covered the rest. How exciting to hear such a positive story!
Family members are not always reliable, and sometimes can affect your life in very harsh ways. Greg found himself in just this situation when a family member stole funds from his account resulting in a bounced check, extra fees, and disconnected utilities. The family member was reported and arrested, but that is no assurance that the funds will be returned. Greg has a job and usually can pay the bills. His wife is seeking a job that will allow her to work when the children are at school. This incident caused an abundance of family grief and Greg was distraught. Good Neighbors was able to help Greg with his utility bill and shared additional resources for food. Greg was quite relieved when he left.

Spread the Spirit 2016
Spirit of Good Neighbors Awards Dinner
November 3rd
Do you know a good neighbor, someone who quietly serves others, making a difference but usually goes unnoticed? We know that there are many individuals and groups in our community who serve others with compassion and dignity every day. These awards seek to honor them and inspire our entire community to demonstrate compassionate awareness and to help one another. These neighbors make Blount County a better place!
Categories for awards include:
18 and under
19 - 54
One community agency or organization
Above and beyond
Nominations will be received between
September 12th and October 16th
Check out the Facebook Page:   Spirit of Good Neighbors Awards -2016
To celebrate, a delicious dinner will be served and nominees and recipients will be acknowledged. Reservations will be required. There is no cost for the meal!
Think about it..... You know at least one good neighbor!