January 2023

Kindness in Action

2022 shone a light on the struggles that many of our neighbors are going through. Just in December, we received 9,919 phone calls to our office from people asking for help!

Based on the sharp increase in requests for help in 2022, we expect that more neighbors will need our help in 2023. We hope you'll join us in caring for our community through Eblen's work, whether by volunteering in our office or at an event, making a monthly gift or sponsoring an event.

This last year has reminded me to be grateful for all of the things that I take for granted, from a full gas tank to from sending my children to school with adequate school supplies. I'm grateful to celebrate a year with Eblen Charities this month, and be part of this organization working diligently to serve.


Together, we can create a community where everyone is housed, warm and safe – and provide the little extras like a new backpack or a prom dress. 

Do you want to help us do our work? Become an Eblen Champion by making a monthly gift of any size. Monthly gifts give us dependable income throughout the year.

We could also use your gift of time! We are looking for volunteers to help answer the phone, do data entry, and provide support to events. We have a special place in our heart for volunteers like Kathy Norris, Suzanne Radcliff, Judy Testo, Joyce Williams, Jan Burleson, Pete Broh, Cindy Estes and Nancy Park. Contact Beth or Julie if you'd like to volunteer with us, or visit us at the Junior League Volunteer Expo on February 11th!.

We've been reflect on the work we did in 2022 and are happy to share that we helped 3,016 families in our community this year. Of course, we know the numbers only tell part of the story, but they do give insight into how we use funds, spend our time and the impact on our community. Some of our clients were helped with a single instance of service - but others came to us multiple times with a variety of needs.


In 2022

·      We provided shoes and clothing for 630 local school kids.

·      We prevented eviction by paying overdue mortgages and rents for 431 households.

·      More than 900 children had a new backpack and school supplies to start the school year with.

·      181 people received gasoline to get to medical appointments and job interviews.

·      800 families got a full Thanksgiving meal to share.

·      Our St. Nicholas Toy Store served over 1,200 families and provided holiday gifts for nearly 3,000 local kids.

·      We helped 98 households with medical expenses, from prescriptions to eyeglasses.


We helped 2,807 families with electric bills: and another 872 households with heat. Lastly, we ensured another 488 homes had running water. Some of the funding for these services is provided through our partnership with Buncombe County Health & Human Services, and the additional help was provided by the generosity of our community!  

The numbers give part of the picture of our work. They don't show the relief we heard in one client's voice when we told him that we could pay for the co-pay for his eye surgery. They don't show the whispered "God Bless You"s that we heard from parents leaving our St. Nicholas Toy Store or our school supply giveaway. The numbers don't show the pride on the face of a student who has just picked out her "dream dress" for the prom at our Prom Dress Express. It is a joy to be part of this work, and we are happy to be part of the solution to our neighbor’s problems.


Eblen Charities is grateful to have partnered with many wonderful people, companies, faith community and agencies to make this work possible.

Eblen Charities is deeply grateful to Jerry Sternberg and Marlene Breger-Joyce for their incredibly generous Board challenge gift of $50,000. Our Board of Directors met that match! Pictured here is John Choi of Sternberg Companies and our Executive Director, Beth Russo. Thank you to Sternberg Companies, and Jerry and Marlene for their investment in our work and the betterment of the Asheville community!

Is Eblen Charities THE place? Are you interested in working with a small nonprofit agency serving people in crisis and poverty? Thanks to the generosity of The Community Foundation of WNC, we're hiring for a newly created part-time position working with our Development and Events Team. Take a look at our website for the position description, and if you think you (or someone you know) would be a good fit, please apply by sending your resume and cover letter here.

We welcome Melanie Wetmore to our Board of Directors! Our volunteer board provides leadership and resources to advance our work.

Melanie is the Chief Nursing Office at Mission Health, and has over 26 years of healthcare experience.

We're glad to have her passion and experience at Eblen Charities!

We are happy to welcome Steve Sizemore to our our Board of Directors! Steve is an Attorney at Law and Partner at Roberts & Stevens with decades of experience. He's an Asheville native, and a recent grandfather. He joined our board this December, and we're so glad to have his experience and passion on the board!

Prom Dress Express

We collect new and gently used formal dresses, shoes, and accessories so that anyone who wants to attend a prom or formal event can do so regardless of their financial situation.

You can donate your new/gently used formal dresses, suits and accessories - or donate services like limo rides, dinners and other items to help a young person have a magical evening.

Contact Kathy to learn more about how you can receive a dress or donate items!

DID YOU KNOW? Through our long-standing partnership with Buncombe County Health & Human Services, we are able to provide financial assistance for heating, utilities and other critical needs. Buncombe County Commissioners approved Covid-19 Recovery funds to help people living at up to 80% of the Area Median Income establish or maintain a household, including helping with back-due mortgages and rents!

You can help us serve our neighbors.

Your donation can go a long way at Eblen Charities! Your help is appreciated! We hope you will consider one of these ways to offer support from making agift, offering your time and skills as a volunteer, or having your company sponsor one of our events.

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