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Better to give than to receive

Young people, ancient lessons


Heather Foley, vice president of finance and administration at West Kentucky RECC has an important, demanding job at the co-op. She also has two other equally significant roles that require lots of time but do not come with a paycheck.

One of them is as mother to two teenagers, Ella and Evan. The third involves youth as well. Heather and her husband, Shaun, head the youth ministry at Clark’s River Baptist Church where they teach, feed and love around 15 kids ages 12–17, helping guide them toward adulthood. 

West Kentucky RECC’s Heather Foley (striped shirt) works with members of her youth group to prepare boxes for Samaritan’s Purse. Photo: Brian Williams

“The first thing we want to help them do is to build a relationship with Jesus,” Heather says. “We also want them to have a safe space to talk about what is going on in their lives. And we teach them to enjoy serving others.”

This time of year, serving others comes in the form of filling shoeboxes for children who will probably receive nothing else the entire year. The teenagers stuff the boxes with small toys, toiletries and school supplies, which are then mailed to Samaritan’s Purse for distribution around the world.

Although they are young, they can do big things Heather says. “They may not have money, but they have time to do for others. We want them to see that the world can be a good, positive place and help make it so.”

Christmas Blessings


It’s hard to tell who is the most blessed from a program called Christmas Blessings—the families who receive gifts, food and much-needed items or the employees at Inter-County Energy Cooperative who put their hearts, their own money and their energy into the program year-round.

Inter-County employees (from left) April Burgess, Farrah Coleman, Lena Tate, Davonne Elliott and Morgan Janssen prepare Christmas Blessings for families. Photo: Dan Hitchcock

For the past 11 years, employees at Inter-County Energy have helped 87 families and 249 children during the holidays.

“We work with the family resource centers to identify families who could use a little lift,” says April Burgess, member services advisor for Inter-County. “Then businesses and individuals throughout the co-op’s six districts donate items for a silent auction. The proceeds are used to purchase gifts and food for local families who receive electric power from Inter-County Energy.”

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