Rotary honors two for ‘giving back’

BRIDGEPORT – Giving back to the community is a way of life in this tiny village.

The Bridgeport Rotary Club has taken notice as it honored two individuals who have given a lot back to the village.

“Each December, Rotarians around the world celebrate “The Family of Rotary,” which honors those in Rotary and their communities who practice service above self for the families and children locally,” Rotary Asst. District Gov. Vickie Bland said during last week’s meeting. “This year, the Bridgeport Rotary Club has chosen to honor a pair of people who contribute so much of their time and talents to families and children of the Bridgeport area, as well as the entire Ohio Valley.”

This year’s honorees are Carol Grandstaff, of the Bridgeport Friendship Council’s Food Pantry, and Dan Young, of Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Belmont County.

Grandstaff was selected for her tireless efforts in working for the Food Pantry which serves hundreds of families monthly, and also provided Christmas baskets of food and toys to those in need of a little help over the holidays.

“I never expected this,” Grandstaff said. “There are so many of us involved … so many that give their time and talents.”

Grandstaff said the Food Pantry served 131 more families than last year, which amounted to about 386 more people.

“We’re growing,” she added.

While the growth continues, so does the need to expand hours of the Food Pantry.

“We will now be open from 5-7 p.m. on Wednesdays and our usual 2-4 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday,” she explained.

Young, like Grandstaff, was stunned by the honor.

“This is really quite an honor,” Young disclosed. “I understand what the Rotary does for the community. It’s a vital part.

“I pride myself in helping others,” he continued. “My mother instilled that in me when I was a little kid. She’s gone now, but I continue to strive to do things to make her proud.”

Young was chosen for his dedication to Big Brothers and Big Sisters which helps brighten the futures of boys and girls in the Bridgeport area by providing positive role models and caring adults in their lives, and for his continued dedication to the projects of Habitat for Humanity in Bellaire and the surrounding areas.

“The Bridgeport Rotary Club takes great pride in being able to honor these members of the Bridgeport community for helping families find ‘Peace through Service,'” Bland said.

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