By Katie Benfield
This past Sunday, Phil Flushing traveled all the way from Flushing, NY, to his welcoming party at the High Country Bowling Lanes! His arrival is welcomed with a great amount of community members who came out to make sure Phil felt right at home before starting his month-long job here in the High Country.
Before Phil got here, he transformed his very own toilet bowl into a piggy bank with the help of WAMY Community Action Inc. At his Toilet Bowl Party, the attendees were able to donate money directly to Phil by placing the money in his toilet bowl!
“It was really awesome,” Ashley Cook, Development Director of WAMY, said. “Everyone loved Phil so much, and he got quite a few donations into his piggy bank toilet bowl.”
While his welcoming party was a blast, Phil’s job at flushing out poverty in the High Country began today! He made his first appearance at Footsloggers, the renowned store located close to downtown.
“I’m so excited to have Phil starting at Footsloggers,” Cook said. “It’s incredible to have Phil’s journey beginning at such a long-standing community business that everyone knows and loves. It’s the perfect welcoming for Phil coming into our community.”
WAMY has worked closely with Jenny Miller, a community volunteer who works with various boards on fundraising and board development, to create a successful fundraiser to fight against poverty.
“Jenny has been such a huge supporter of WAMY,” Cook said. “She’s been so helpful, and she’s very community-minded.”
According to Cook, Footsloggers has also been a constant supporter of WAMY’s initiatives by constantly helping the nonprofit in any way that it can, whether that be through auction items or hosting ladies night out events for the organization.
Footsloggers just reopened this past Wednesday, and it is bigger and better than ever, with an outstanding staff, and an overall goal of being community-oriented and involved.
“I’m incredibly touched that WAMY would think of Footsloggers when trying to figure out where Phil was going to appear,” Miller said. “We are so excited that Phil is here!”
Miller stated that the High Country has a high percentage of poverty–and some of that is hidden poverty. She hopes that Footsloggers can help Phil raise awareness of this poverty, while also informing people of their resources to help provide them with the tools necessary to break the line of poverty.
The local poverty rate for our area is 25.3%. While that number may seem relatively small compared to the remaining 74.7%, it means that more than one out of four people suffer from poverty in our community.
Phil is here, with WAMY, to help put an end to this poverty.
“I love WAMY, what it does and all the people that it helps,” Miller said. “It’s incredibly important to raise awareness for the organization, as well as for this cause, and Phil is the perfect way to do that.”
While Phil is visiting Footsloggers today, there’s no telling where he’ll be tomorrow or the next day! Don’t forget to stop by and see him at Footsloggers–remember, you can place money directly into his toilet bowl to help raise money to flush out poverty!
Check in tomorrow to find out where Phil ends up!