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Category: Newsletter

Heartland Pioneers Bellevue Thanksgiving Food Bank Donation

This year for Thanksgiving, Heartland Council has purchased $2,500.00 worth of Turkey’s and other non-perishables for the food pantries in Bellevue. The three food pantries came together to ensure that food is distributed equally to the needy in the South Omaha and Bellevue area.

The total cost for this one day is over $10,000.00. Heartland Council is proud to help sponsor this effort. This year, we ordered Turkeys at a cost of 99 cents per pound, 125 Turkeys. This purchase will ensure that at least 125 families will have a fresh turkey for Thanksgiving this year. As you can see, our volunteers work very hard to fulfill the needs in this community.

Bob Wolkins knew of the need earlier this year at the food banks for the coming Thanksgiving and worked with Fareway Grocery to purchase the Turkey’s and non-perishables for Thanksgiving.

Submitted by Bob Wolkins

Cozy Wraps Makes a Delivery the Week Before Thanksgiving


The week before Thanksgiving Carolyn gather up the items she had knitted and the items a couple other knitters had dropped off at her home for delivery. Carolyn first dropped off 3 lap robes/shoulder wraps at Heritage Ridge. The receptionist told her that Lenore would distribute them. Carolyn and Bob then headed to Lydia House for the next delivery. Nancy the receptionist accepted the items on behalf of Lydia House that consisted of 8 baby blankets, 8 bath wraps, 4 pair of mittens and 4 pair of slippers. Both of the recipients of the donated items thanked Carolyn and the Heartland Pioneers for the donations. She was told all of the items are much appreciated.

Submitted by Carolyn Wolkins

Cozy Wraps Keeps Making Much Needed Items to Donate to Those in Need


This fall on September 15, Carolyn delivered 22 baby blankets to Lydia House investing 342 volunteer hours, on September 29 she had 2 scarfs, 8 head bands and 5 scarf/headband set she delivered taking 33 hours to make. Gwen accepted the baby blankets for Lydia house. Then on October 6 she delivered 6 lap robes/shoulder wraps to Heritage Ridge. Carolyn noted that she took 81 hours to make these items. Her volunteer hours totaled 456 for the items she made and donated. Chapter president Bob Wolkins thanked Carolyn for making and delivering these items. The hours were added to the Cozy Wraps total for the current year.

Submitted by Carolyn Wolkins – Photos by Bob Wolkins

NRLN Presidents Podcast – Things to Think About for Medicare Enrollment

NRLN President’s Forum Video/Podcast Things to Think About for Medicare Enrollment   The NRLN’s Series 2022, Episode #4 video/podcast, Preparation for Medicare Annual Enrollment Period is available on the NRLN website home page at www.nrln.org. My objective for this video/podcast is to emphasize the importance of being prepared for the enrollment period October 15 – December7 and to provide tips on how to do that so you can get the best deal.  

Don’t feel rushed, you don’t have to make final decisions early, for new coverage beginning January 1, 2023. Don’t succumb to the pressure of direct calls, TV commercials, or literature in your mailbox.  

Preparation is important whether you are considering selecting Original Medicare with or without a supplemental plan (Medigap) and a prescription drug plan or your other option, a private plan, Medicare Advantage. Get prepared before you call an insurance agent or an advertised 800 number!  

The most important step is to read and understand your copy of “Medicare and You 2023” handbook. Studying it could save you time and money, and it will build your confidence and competence. If you did not get the 2023 handbook in the mail you can get one by requesting it at www.Medicare.gov or download it by simply clicking on the icon at the lower end of the center column at www.nrln.org.  

In the video/podcast I stress:
— Examine your economic situation, your affordability status
— Current health stats and prospects for continued good health 10 years from now
— Health history review of ancestors  

The rest of the video/podcast goes into details explaining our two choices, Original Medicare or a private plan, Medicare Advantage. After you view the video or listen to the podcast, you may want to refer to my show notes, including slides, to read details that may have passed to quickly. Click here to access the show notes on the NRLN video library webpage.  

Bill Kadereit,
President National Retiree Legislative Network

Thank You To Cozy Wraps From Open Door Mission and Lydia House

For the past few weeks I have been collecting finished handmade items from Pioneer volunteers. In the last few day we collected 13 baby blankets, 3 bankets with matching cocoons and hats and 3 cocoon and hat sets. On June 22 we delivered these items to ODM for distribution to Lydia House. They were accepted by the receptionist, Nancy.


Submitted By Carolyn Wolkins – Photo By Bob Wolkins

Heartland Pioneers Donate To The Salvation Army Annual Fan Drive In Omaha

Help Omaha Metro Residents Beat the Heat: Donate to the Annual Fan Drive

Summer’s sizzling temperatures can take a toll on anyone, but the elderly, people with medical conditions and those without air conditioning are especially at risk. That’s why Westlake Ace Hardware’s annual Fan Drive to benefit The Salvation Army has been a vital lifeline to many in Omaha.

This year Westlake Ace and The Salvation Army celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Fan Drive. Stop by one of Westlake Ace Hardware metro-Omaha locations any time between June 1 and June 19 to round up your purchase or donate any amount of your choice. Donations can also be made online here.

Funds will be used to purchase fans for The Salvation Army, and all donations will support people in need in our local community, including low-income seniors, qualified families with children and adults with disabilities.

Donating to the fan drive is an easy way to make a big difference for someone in need. A single box fan can help reduce energy costs by properly circulating air throughout a home or by helping a small window unit air conditioner cool more efficiently.

Since beginning the Fan Drive, more than $57,000 has been raised in the Omaha metro area. That equates to 3,800 fans donated to help people fight the brutal summer heat. Nationally, the partnership – which began at one store in Hutchinson, Kansas, and has grown to 127 stores across the country, including eight stores in the Omaha metro – has helped raise $650,000 in the past decade.

“We are so grateful to every one of the Westlake Ace Hardware customers who contribute to the fan drive,” said Tiffanie McCowin, director of material assistance and seasonal services for The Salvation Army of Omaha. “Something as simple as a fan can make a tremendous difference in the health and comfort of the elderly and others who might struggle during summer’s hottest days.”

The Heartland Pioneers this year purchased 70 box fans from Westlake ACE Hardware for the Salvation Army Annual Fan Drive and donated them in the name of Dick and Cathy Maxwell.
Submitted By Gordy Viner

Care Bears Lincoln, NE Pioneer Volunteers


In 2019 Helen Loyd and Sherry Lynn Riddle moved to Lincoln, NE and continued their pioneer volunteer work. They started to make tote like bags, hug bears and blankets in their home. They connected with the Lincoln Police Department to distribute the items they were making for those in need. Their in house connection at the police department was Dawn Moore. Dawn is the office specialist that collects and helps distribute the items to those in need. Helen and Sherry Lynn had Dawn over to their home to show her the work that they have finished this year for her to distribute. Helen and Sherry Lynn made 98 hug bears, 103 tote bags and 4 blankets.

Submitted by Sherry Lynn Riddle