Community Services

Recreation creation survey for plan update

June 25, 2015 // 0 Comments

Cannon Township is currently working on an update to its five-year Recreation Plan. As part of that process, they are looking for input from the residents. You will find the survey on the Cannon Township website at There is a link to the survey under “Breaking News” on the homepage. Over the past ten years, Cannon has been working on the creation of a trail system throughout the Township. The original 4-mile stretch was opened in 2007 and a few smaller segments have been added since then. An extension from Townsend Park into Cannonsburg should be completed at the end of this summer. Many of these trails have been funded with grant dollars with match being provided by the Recreation Fund. This Fund was established with millage income that was first approved by voters in 2002 and has been successfully renewed ever since. In addition to trail construction, Cannon Township has recently built a park on the Township Center grounds. It provides a play structure geared for preschoolers, a picnic shelter, an open play field, and a small trail that winds through a wetland area. Restrooms are located nearby. Cannon is hoping that its residents respond to the survey to help the officials make decisions regarding future projects. Please take a few minutes to complete it. If you prefer, hard copies are available in the Township Center Lobby.

Homewatch CareGivers devoted to customized personal assistance for love ones

June 25, 2015 // 0 Comments

For 12 years, Sue and Jeff Swain have owned and operated Homewatch CareGivers, serving Kent County. Their team has served over 900 clients. Homewatch CareGivers is the most experienced provider of full-service home care in Kent County. The company provides customized personal assistance to people of all ages including seniors, people with disabilities and chronic conditions, and patients discharged from the hospital or other skilled facilities. Services, primarily geared towards seniors, include respectful assistance with meals, safe mobility, medication assistance, companionship and conversation, healthy meals, light housekeeping, bathing, dressing and toileting, and memory care. Homewatch CareGivers knows that, in today’s age of busy families and tight time, many adult children cannot devote the time they need to properly caring for their parents. Homewatch CareGivers knows that, by hiring caregivers who are well-trained and love what they do, they can provide peace-of-mind to adult children and their loved ones. Every month, worldwide, there are 880,000 people added to the 65+ age group. That is a lot of seniors, and especially their loved ones, who want to ensure that they remain healthy and active –physically and mentally – and continue to live independently. But as our bodies age they slow down and our days are filled with doctors visits, medications, and aches and pains that take over a once active routine; not to mention that we start to lose our network of friends and family to illnesses or old age. Homewatch CareGivers knows that success comes only if their team is dedicated to the customer—treating their clients like clients and not patients. Our “Gold Standard” of care also includes: 1) client introductions to their caregivers, 2) being available 24/7, so that a care manager can talk to you “live” to address anything that might arise, 3) scheduling that is 100% reliable, because our caregivers “check in” with our web-based phone scheduling system for every shift. 4) flexible scheduling, allowing our clients to determine exactly how much assistance is needed—from 3-hour shifts to 24/7,  5) Caregiver selectivity, with 9% of applicants becoming employees, 6) Our employees are happy, mature (average age 44 years old) and well-trained, 7) the “peace of mind” that comes from our investment in worker’s compensation insurance, liability & bonding insurance, thorough background & criminal […]

Rockford photographer hoping for help in cancer fight Cash donations to help with medical, bills

June 10, 2015 // 0 Comments

Rockford residents who have attended many of the city’s annual events and celebrations likely have seen photographer Tom Scott with his digital Canon camera documenting the festivities. Tom has taken pictures of Sweetheart Splash, Start of Summer parade and carnival, Harvest Festival, Santa Parade, the Rockford Chamber annual dinner, and has had a professional, if part time, nature and portrait photography business. He was a regular contributor to the Rockford Squire Newspaper as well as to many of our side publications, such as the Visitors Guide to the White Pine Trail and the Visitors Guide to Rockford (now in its third year). Several years ago Tom was diagnosed with throat cancer and he successful beat the disease, only to have it return again, twice. Currently Tom is battling the cancer for the third time and due to complications and symptoms of cancer surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatments, is unable to work and has not yet completed the long process of signing up for disability or social security. According to Tom, he no longer has any income and his bills are piling up. Any donations are greatfully accepted. Tom has an account at MedGift at, where safe, secure transactions may be made. Alternately, donations can be made to Tom Scott, 15017 Red Pine, Kent City Mi, 49330. Let’s all keep Tom in our hearts as he fights this battle again.

Project FRESH gets free Michigan grown fruits and vegetables to WIC recipients

June 10, 2015 // 0 Comments

GRAND RAPIDS – The Kent County Health Department is offering clients of the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women Infants and Children (WIC) the opportunity to get $20 worth of free food from area farmers markets beginning June 1st. In addition, participants receive a brief class about the program, nutritional tips, and recipes. Those who qualify for the program will also get an insulated grocery tote perfect for bringing fresh fruits and vegetables home from area farmers markets and participating roadside stands. Applicants must make an appointment at the Kent County Health Department by calling (616) 632-7200 to sign up for one of the classes. Classes will be held at various locations in both English and Spanish until late July. During the class the funds will be electronically deposited on clients Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card. Several Kent County Farmers Markets and Roadside stands are equipped to transact sales using the EBT or Bridge cards. Anyone who is eligible and attends the class will receive a list of those locations. “The benefits of this program are two fold,” said Christopher Bendekgey, Director of the Community Clinical Services Division at the department. “We are able to get fresh fruits and vegetables into the hands of our clients, free of charge to them, and we’re able to keep the funding for the program in the local economy by supporting the farmers and growers of Kent County.” $22,500 dollars was made available for the program from the United States Agriculture Department. As the continuation of a pilot program launched in 2012, Kent County remains the only county in the nation in which farmers and growers have been equipped, trained and authorized to accept EBT funds for this program. While the program runs from June 1, 2015 until October 31st Project FRESH is a once a year benefit, meaning each recipient will only receive the $20 benefit one time this season.

Rockford Farm Market now accepting Bridge cards and Double Up

May 28, 2015 // 0 Comments

Popular shopping venue enters 13th year With 23 regular vendors and dozens of daily vendors, Rockford’s weekly farm market literally has plenty of new items to see and purchase at every visit. Now all vendors accept Bridge cards and participate in Michigan’s Douple Up food bucks. This state initiative, designed to encourage healthy eating, allows shoppers to double their purchase of Michigan-grown fruits and vegetables. For every $20 spent on these eligible, locally produced and healthy items, they will receive an equal amount at no cost. Farm Market manager and Rockford’s Treasurer Kim McKay said the Double Up program is paid for through a variety of grants and endowments and adds a teriffic value to already great purchase options at the weekly market. Rockford’s market is unique and limited to locally-produced products. In addition to fresh produce of all types as they come into season, shoppers will find jerkey, honey, baked goods, cheeses, mushrooms and other delectable items. The market is open now Saturdays in the Towers parking lot (South Squires Street). Now open 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. it will begin opening at 8 a.m. after June 1 until September. In October the hours will return to 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and the market will run through October 31. McKay said the market was first started by the Rockford Chamber of Commerce, and after the initial year was taken on as a city-run venue. She said it has been very popular from the start, both for vendors and for shoppers. McKay said a recent class on how to promote markets included ideas on attracting more vendors, but Rockford’s market is so popular McKay has to turn vendors down after space is completely booked.

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