‘Keep the Heat On’ fundraiser to feature local musicians

Christina Day

February 3, 2014

The We Care Planning Committee of the the Blue Ridge Opportunity Commission’s “Keep the Heat On” soup luncheon fundraiser is coming at a crucial time for some area families.

The event, which will be from 11 a.m to 2 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 12, will raise crisis intervention funds to assist qualified families in Ashe with emergency energy or fuel costs.

“The demand is huge,” Louise Ham, case manager for Blue Ridge Opportunity Commission (BROC) said. “I have had to turn lots of people away due to lack of funds.”

Ham said the We Care Planning Committee, the fundraising arm of BROC is vital in helping meet the pressing needs of the community.

“The We Care Committee is all volunteers, and they work very hard to fundraise the money for BROC,” Ham said.

Last year, 229 people were provided emergency electric or fuel crisis intervention through BROC.

“It’s been harder and harder for folks to heat their homes this year because of the cold and fuel costs,” said Sylvia Miller, treasurer of the We Care board, adding that the committee is often called upon to help the elderly and single-parent families with young children.

Applicants to the program must meet the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services poverty guidelines and can only receive assistance once in a 12-month period.

“Being cold is right up there with being hungry; when you’re cold, you’re miserable,” Miller said. “If we can help somebody less fortunate than us, that’s what God put us here for.”

“Keep the Heat On” fundraiser will be from 11-2 p.m. On Wednesday, Feb. 12 and the Jefferson Methodist Church Fellowship Hall. The “snow date” in the event of bad weather will be Friday, Feb. 14.

The event will feature live local music throughout the day, with the schedule as follows:

— Jerry Smith and Friends - 11 a.m.

— Sons of Pitch barbershop quartet - 11:30 a.m.

— Katy Taylor and Friends - noon

— Steel Magnolias - 12:30 p.m

— Wayne Henderson, Herb Key and Friends - 1 p.m.

The We Care Committee will be selling a soup lunch, either homemade vegetarian potato or vegetable-beef soup with cornbread or crackers, dessert and drink for $6 a plate. Eat-in or take-out options are available.

All of the food and all items to support the event is donated by the We Care Planning Committee, allowing 100 percent of the money raised to go to the BROC emergency crisis intervention program.

For more information on the fundraiser or applying for crisis funds, call BROC at (336) 384-4543 or visit the website at

Monetary donations can be sent to BROC at P.O. Box 155 in Warrensville, NC 28693. Donations of items to the BROC thrift shop in Warrensville, proceeds of which go to the crisis funds, can be made directly to the store on Old Warrensville School Rd. in Warrensville.

Christina Day can be reached at 336-846-7164 or on Twitter @CDayinWJ