The Diakon Family Life Services advisory council is busy getting ready for the 15th annual Spring Fling and Shopper's Showcase.
The fundraising event will begin with shopping at 10 a.m. May 4 at the Williamsport Country Club, 800 Country Club Drive, and the luncheon starting at noon.
Diakon Family Life Services, 435 W. Fourth St., and 1800 Market St., Lewisburg, provides outpatient mental health counseling.
According to Kathy Wurster, president of Diakon's advisory council, proceeds from the event will fund Diakon's Benevolent Care Fund, which assists the uninsured and underinsured by way of a sliding fee.
Wurster said last year's event raised $10,600, which helped 1,650 clients receive services.
She said funding has decreased for the agency's counseling department and the Spring Fling is specific to the counseling program.
Rita A. Rousseau, executive director, said counseling is provided to anyone who needs the services.
"Individuals come to the Family Life Services program for counseling for issues like depression, marriage counseling, those who may be suffering from abuse, anger issues, etc. Only individuals requiring a higher, more intensive level of care are referred to more appropriate providers," Rousseau said.
Rousseau said Diakon has had to reduce the amount of subsidy the program is awarded based on the ever-growing need of subsidy across all of the Diakon programs. She also said the organization is anticipating significant funding reductions based on the governor's proposed budget and health care reform.
"It would be wonderful to see $15,000 raised," Rousseau said. "That would certainly help us to extend additional services to our most needy."
M&T Bank is a corporate sponsor for the second year in a row.
Hillcrest Farm and Greenhouse, Lock Haven, will continue to provide the flowers and the Shopper's Showcase will include the following vendors:
Autumn Woods Soap Co. - Old-fashioned handmade soap.
Emerald Falls Pottery - Wheel-thrown pottery.
Fabulous Lindsay Banners for All Occasions - Professional, quality banners.
Gigi La Bean - High-quality handmade hair bows, tutu skirts and dresses.
Parsons Hot Glass Studio - Torch-worked glass jewelry.
Plankenhorn's - Fine stationary, paper and pens.
Silpada Designs - Sterling silver jewelry.
thirty-one - Organizational products, handbags, totes and soft luggage.
Willard's Saddlery - Luggage, leather and gifts.
Wilson-Ross, Lewisburg - Vintage and modern clothing, jewelry, accessories and artwork.
A percentage of all items sold and ordered during the luncheon will benefit Diakon Family Life Services, Wurster said.
Members of the advisory council also include Laurel Spencer, clinical director; Rosemary Schranghamer, secretary; and members Nicole Blaschak Crawford, Frani Doherty, Mary Engel, Beth Moore, Andrea Orso and Heather Pfleegor.
Tickets are $35 per person and should be reserved by calling Diakon Family Life Services at 322-7873 or by mailing a payment to Andrea Orso, 364 Lincoln Ave., Williamsport, PA 17701 by April 23.
Checks should be made payable to Family Life Services.
Monetary donations are being accepted at Diakon Family Life Services, 435 W. Fourth St., Williamsport, PA 17701.
Wurster said the committee will introduce a new fundraising event for next year, but specific details are not available at this time.
"Diakon Family Life Services has been providing services to Williamsport and Lycoming County for approximately half a century," Rousseau added. "Our efforts to support those in need in the community have remained steadfast. Diakon's mission is to respond to God's call to serve the neighbor, and we are proud to continue this tradition in Lycoming County."