circus Hall of Fame

Miami County

 

Annual Report Spotlight

Carol Biddle, President of Harvesting Capabilities, and Jeff Moorehead, Co-founder.
Lonnie is a Mobility Assistance Dog trained by ICAN. Lonnie is a loyal companion, helpful partner, and a friend to everyone!

Harvesting Capabilities, Inc. Sharing Hope

Jeff Morehead and Mike Hines were drawn together as they both faced daily challenges due to their physical disabilities. Discussing their difficult and sometimes discouraging days, they agreed that other people in their community could benefit from a support group to share experiences. So, in 2007 they founded “HandiCapable” to provide mutual help and encouragement in the Peru community.

To keep in step with the times, they rebranded the organization Harvesting Capabilities (HC) in 2008. Their effort was gaining momentum — some members acquired handicapped vans, essential in leading a full life outside of their homes, others started writing books about their experiences. Co-founder Jeff Moorhead said, “We encouraged others to gain strength, confidence, independence, and strive to make disabilities into possibilities.”

The Miami County Community Foundation (MCCF) first got involved in 2008 with a grant of $1,500 to launch a database project that employed some of HC’s members. HC continues to benefit from ongoing grants from the Dukes Health Care Foundation of Miami County Inc., among others.

Jeff and Mike’s vision grew with support from Carol Biddle, President of HC, and a constant source of inspiration. Along with Vice President Cheryl Lee, Secretary Linda Gustin, and Jeff Moorhead, they’ve turned the small group into a charitable organization with thirty volunteers. HC supports people with a disability, and also provides medical equipment, aluminum ramps, and elder support for the entire county.

The MCCF awarded HC its largest grant in 2015 — a $10,000 Impact Grant for startup expenses for a new facility, opened on October 5th 2015. Their new home of operation houses their offices and medical equipment, both new and lightly used, available at reasonable rates to anyone with a short term or long term need.

In addition, HC opened their new thrift store, generating needed income while providing a place for members to learn new skills. “I didn't have a background in retail,” said Carol Biddle. “We’ve learned to research the value of donated items, and know what things to accept, and what to turn away.” Carol also recognizes the importance of being sensitive to the feelings of those who bring their treasures to the store. “Most items are used. Only a few times we’ve had to turn things away,” she said.

Recently, the MCCF granted HC a Community Foundation Sustainability Award, creating a permanent endowment fund with annual monetary distributions for maintenance and support. The MCCF is pleased to support Harvesting Capabilities in pursuit of their mission to provide both a voice and a range of opportunities and services to community members with a disability.

To learn more about Harvesting Capabilities, or to find out how you can help, visit the store at 231 N. Grant Street in Peru, or go to: http://www.harvestingcapabilities.org.


Welcome to the Miami County Community Foundation
Miami County is a wonderful community with a rich heritage, steeped in history. Since 1993, Miami County Community Foundation has brought caring people and charitable endeavors together for the good of this great community. The Community Foundation gives donors flexible and tax-effective ways to ensure their charitable giving. We work to build substantial endowment funds for our community through contributions large and small.

Miami County Community Foundation is proud to be a part of the Northern Indiana Community Foundation (NICF). The NICF allows us to maximize our investment benefits and be more cost efficient. This way Miami County donations can do more—right here in Miami County.

So far, Miami County Community Foundation has dispersed nearly 5.2 million dollars in grants and scholarships. Currently the Community Foundation holds over $7.6 million in assets and administers over 140 funds.