Executive Director Charron guides Monroe County HNS in its goal 'to give a hand to the community'
Tina Charron, executive director for Monroe County House of Neighborly Service (HNS), has had an amazing experience in her first year on the job.
“I can honestly say I love going to work,” Charron told SW Illinois News. “The volunteers lift each other and the community up. My favorite thing about working at HNS has been when a client has overcome a life challenge and shares their success. Oftentimes, they offer to volunteer. It is so nice to see it come full circle.”
Charron joined HNS in 2016 as a volunteer and became executive director in September 2018.
“When I became part of Monroe County, I fell in love with the community,” she said. “The people of Monroe County have such giving hearts and I wanted to be a part of that culture. There is always something new happening at HNS and it is always a fun adventure.”
HNS assists the community in many ways. The group, which consists of community organizations, civic groups, churches, agencies and individuals, can help clients with their rent, utilities, medical needs, small home repairs and travel to appointments.
HNS has an Emergency Food Pantry for anyone not able to get to a food pantry for the week or is just generally in need. It features canned goods, boxed foods, fresh meat and toiletries. There are also sharing cupboards at the Waterloo Senior Complex and Valmeyer Senior Complex that feature food staples, dairy and hygiene products.
Additionally, HNS has a summer lunch program, hosts an annual ball for the developmentally disabled, has holiday outreach for Thanksgiving baskets and an adopt-a-family program for Christmas.
“House of Neighborly Service is simply here to give a hand to the community,” Charron said. “We are about neighbors helping neighbors. Our mission could not be completed without our volunteers and the support of our Monroe County community.”
Charron said the goal at HNS is to continue to grow. One of the new things happening is a curiosity emporium called The Back Porch, set to open April 13.
“This is a place where we will reuse, recycle and resell donated items,” Charron said. “We will be working with local residents who want to share skills to make interesting items. We will be reselling some specialty items and will have a great workshop where we can hold classes to teach skills and crafts to those who wish to learn. All of the funds raised will be used to help families in Monroe County in need and will support our HNS outreach mission.”
Charron, born and raised in Mt. Vernon, currently resides in Waterloo. She attended Rend Lake College and Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. She has a background in education, having been a teacher for seven years and then a school mentoring coordinator for Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Charron enjoys spending her spare time with her family.