Volunteers from Fountain, Warren and Benton counties recently came together to give time and help make pies for Hope Spring’s fundraiser.

“We are making apple pies to raise money to help with the monthly expenses such as utilities and food and insurance that our grants don’t cover,” Executive Director of Hope Springs Safe House Toni McGowen said. “This is our third year that we’ve made pies and this year we are making 2,200 apple crumb-top pies.”

McGowen said Cindy Mason is deserving of the credit for the idea as she never stopped trying to get the board to give it a try.

“Cindy Mason is the brains behind this. She saw it done somewhere else and talked to our board about it. When she first mentioned it, the board said no we don’t want to do pies, it’s not going to work,” McGowen said. “She kept bringing it to us and we decided to try it and it has been wonderful.

All types of groups came to volunteer in the building behind Attica High School. McGowen said there had already been 65 people giving their time and the number would keep going up.

“So far, we have had 65 volunteers but over the period we’re working the next two days we will probably have over 200 volunteers. They are all from within the community,” she said. “We have school groups that come, we have places like the dentist office come, work groups, church groups and then just people in the community that wanted to come and help.”

McGowan said she is grateful for the community collaboration during the fundraiser.

“I really love the community collaboration. It is not only a good fundraiser, but it is also a community awareness raiser for the community to gather together and we all work together and try to help victims of domestic violence in our community,” she said.

While located in Attica, Hope Springs serves those in Warren, Benton and Fountain Counties. McGowen said the organization will help anyone and be confidential.

“Hope Springs is an emergency and longer-term shelter for victims of domestic violence and people can come whether they are male or female,” McGowen said. “It doesn’t matter how much they make because all of our services are free and confidential and when people come we try to give them all of their basic needs like toiletries, bed linens, towels, food and we also try to make sure they have case management and advocacy services, so they can work toward self-sufficiency. We offer different groups during the week like parenting groups and support groups and bible study.”

McGowen said she is touched by how much the community supports the Hope Springs organization.

“It just shows me that we live in a wonderful community,” she said. “I cannot tell you how much this community supports Hope Springs. We could not do it without them, not only in this way but in other ways like people coming by and dropping off donations of things like paper products or clothing.”