Non-profit formed after tragedies starting community volunteer program

DANSVILLE — For the sake of better reaching out to the community, Dansville Strong Inc. is placing a suggestion box in the Dansville Village Clerk’s office for names and addresses of local senior citizens who may need assistance with outdoor projects around the home.

Dansville Strong president Tina Peaty said that the executive board is still building its program, called, “It Takes a Child to Grow a Village,” currently centered around assisting the elderly. Peaty said that Dansville Strong is reaching out to local organizations to acquire helping hands, as well as seeking community members to volunteer to help.

The size of the team each month may fluctuate, depending on the size of the job and on how many volunteers they can muster. Requests submitted by the second of the month would be prioritized as long as volunteers are available.

Suggestion forms for people in need, as well as for volunteers, will be available in the Village clerk’s office, as well as the Dansville Public Library and Dansville Seniors Center. Forms can be dropped off in the Dansville Village Clerk’s office.

Starting as a grassroots effort, Dansville Strong became a 501(c)3 not-for-profit on Aug. 8, as a way to extend community support after two tragic accidents occurred in one week. The first accident claimed the life of a 2016 Dansville graduate; the second accident claimed the lives of four Dansville High Schoolers.

Currently, Dansville Strong has a six-member executive board.

“There’s a driving force behind all of this,” Peaty said. “I lost my son 18 years ago, and so I knew what these parents are feeling, and I had to do something.”

She added that each of the board members were hand-picked for a certain reason, “and now, here we are with something great, and we’re going to continue.”

“I think we all have our personal reasons,” Chrissy Porter, executive board member, said. “We’ve all suffered loss and we all want to give to our community. This is where we’ve all been, this is where we’re going to continue to be, and we’re raising our children to give back and do more.”

In addition to “It Takes a Child,” Dansville Strong is planning a Halloween party and Trunk-n-Treat at the Dansville Community Center on Oct. 26. The Trunk-n-Treat will be from 5 p.m. until 6 p.m., then the Halloween Party from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m.

Dansville Strong also recently received a $4,000 donation through a local softball tournament. If anyone wishes to make a donation, checks may be payable to Dansville Strong Inc. and sent to P.O. Box 485 Dansville, NY 14437.