LAURINBURG — To lower health risks from the summer heat, several Scotland County groups are doing what they can to find fans for elderly residents in the community.
The Court of Calanthe, a faith-based group, is sponsoring a fan drive for Scotland and Robeson counties.
“Based on our belief in helping others, we felt like that would be a good venture to help our elders,” said Dorothy Johnson, grand district deputy for the organization. “We wanted to keep the momentum going of helping our elders.”
Donations of box fans or monetary donations will be accepted until June 25 at two locations. The drop off locations are Scotland Parks and Recreation at 1210 Turnpike Road and Piney Grove United Methodist Church at 5135 Highway 83 South in Maxton.
Donations can be dropped off at Parks and Recreation during business hours and at the church from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturdays.
The group hopes to begin passing the fans out by July 1.
Scotland County Parks and Recreation will also be giving out fans provided by the Lumber River Council of Government provides.
“They supply us with the fans to help contribute to the seniors well being,” said Tammy Jacobs, office manager for parks and recreation. “It gets hot in the summer and we just want to do something to help.”
Jacobs said that she’s not sure when the fans will come in but expects it to be soon. The fans will be available to those who are 60 and older.
Carolina Hearts Homecare will also be giving away fans to those 60 and older. Last year the organization had the “Pak the Van with a Fan” drive to collect fans for those older residents in Scotland, Richmond, Robeson, and Hoke counties.
So many fans were donated last year that the organization isn’t doing a drive this year..
Those who wish to get a fan must have a referral and meet certain requirements. Recipients must be under the poverty level, annual income can not be over $1,032 for single recipient and $1,392 for a couple; and must not live in assisted living, housing authority, or state/government funded housing.
The referrals are being accepted until the fans run out.
“It’s important because there are low income families who might not be able to afford fans or air conditioning,” said Carolina Hearts Assistant Agency Director Jonathon Lewis. “We try to prevent dehydration, heat stroke, any kind of illness that is associated with the heat.”
According to health officials, young children and older adults are more vulnerable to heatstroke and dehydration during the extreme heat that comes in the summer months.
According to the U.S. Center of Disease Control, nearly 700 people die a year from heat, making it the deadliest of all weather events.
Reach Katelin Gandee at 910-506-3171