Christian Help -- A history of helping
Christian Help is a nondenominational public charity helping to meet poverty and emergency needs. It was incorporated in the State of West Virginia in 1996 and is recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) agency.
Christian Help got its start in 1994 when the former director of Christian Help in Morgantown decided to form a new CHI in some poor, more rural place, where there was more need and fewer resources. We rented the first floor of building in East Kermit. ABLE Families, our partner agency, rented the second floor.
In 1996 the Corps of Engineers decided to buy that building and tear it down as part of its Flood Control Program. In 1998 Christian Help, together with its neighboring agency, ABLE Families, began construction of a new building in the heart of Kermit. It was occupied by the two agencies in April of 1999.
In 2004 the two agencies constructed a second building, which provided space for an after-school classroom for ABLE Families and a furniture “warehouse” for Christian Help. That building was occupied in March, 2005. The two agencies complement each other, with Christian Help providing material and financial help for those in need and ABLE Families providing a continuum of educational programs to help people break out of poverty.
In the fall of 2009, as Christian Help celebrated its fifteenth anniversary in Mingo County, Sr. Brendan Conlon retired as director, at the age of 82. On the occasion, she was awarded the prestigious 35th Star Medal from West Virginia governor Joe Manchin.
Sr. Therese Carew, a Franciscan sister from Indiana now directs Christian Help. She lives with fellow community member Sr. Patricia Ann Murray (who is Program Director at ABLE Families) in Warfield, Kentucky.
Christian Help is supported entirely by donations, mostly from churches and individuals. It is not affiliated with any one church and serves anyone in need, regardless of race or religion--or lack of religion.
Christian Help's logo
consists of a heart,
the universal symbol
of love and caring,
and the Chi Rho, a symbol
composed of the first two Greek letters of the name of Christ. The symbol has been used for "Christ" since the second century.
Sister Brendan Conlon at the sign of Christian Help's original location in Kermit, WV