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Citizens Bank honors teller for volunteer efforts

| Friday, Nov. 2, 2012, 12:02 a.m.
Louis B. Ruediger
Kittanning Empowerment Center volunteer Amy Miller, coordinator Jason Seavers and member Frank Stewart stand near a stove that was purchased with some of the grant money awarded by Citizens Bank Foundation. Thursday November 1, 2012 Louis B. Ruediger | Leader Times

KITTANNING – A local center offering support to people suffering and recovering from mental health issues recently received a big financial boost because of the efforts of one of its volunteers.

Amy Miller, a senior teller at the Kittanning branch of Citizens Bank, received awards from Citizens Bank Foundation for volunteering more than 50 hours at the Kittanning Empowerment Center (KEP) at 113 Market St.

Miller received Citizens Bank Foundation's Be Inspired Award, the RBS (Royal Bank of Scotland) Community Stars Award and the Community Cash back Award — totaling $4,250 in grants which will be used at the center.

“At Citizens Bank, we encourage community involvement and volunteerism,” said Daniel K. Fitzpatrick, president and CEO of Citizens Bank and RBS Citizens for Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware.

“Amy Miller is an excellent example of living our credo and I'm pleased to recognize her efforts for such an important organization serving so many in need in Kittanning.”

Miller said additional money from grants and from a fundraiser she organized in April has brought that amount to around $6,000. Some of that sum has gone toward purchasing a new stove for the center, she said.

And that's an important addition since cooking and sharing meals is a vital part of the center's hospitality.

“We want people to know they're welcome there,” said Miller about the center.

On Thursday, Miller stopped by the center on her lunch break.

The atmosphere was laid back and friendly with people stopping by to talk and get together for a spaghetti lunch.

KEP coordinator Jason Seavers said members had just decided to decorate the front window in a Hawaiian Christmas theme for the town's upcoming Light-Up Night.

He said that although regular hours are from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, the center is coordinating activities beyond those times.

An anger management group meets every Monday from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. A support group for those suffering from depression gets together on Tuesdays from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

But Seavers said he hopes to add group activities such as bowling and occasional day trips to the center's calendar of events.

Participants already gather at the center to play bingo, participate in art classes and get together most Sundays to cheer on the Steelers.

And others in the community have kicked in to help feed those attending the football Sundays. Vocelli Pizza and Fox's Pizza Den have donated pizza for the last couple of games, said Seavers.

Kittanning resident Frank Stewart said he stops by the center every week. He was dressed in a Steelers shirt and cap and said he enjoys coming to the Steelers parties.

“This is a nice place to come,” he said, adding that he has been a regular visitor and participant at the center for years.

The Butler based Alliance for Nonprofit Resources organization provides management services for the center.

Kelly Conger, grants and marketing coordinator with Alliance, said part of their mission is to help nonprofits like KEP meet the needs of individuals and the community more effectively.

She said people interested in giving money or any supplies for the center such as large food donations should contact Alliance for Nonprofit Resources at 212-214 South Main St., Butler, PA 16001 or call 724-431-3723.

Brigid Beatty is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-543-1303 or bbeatty@tribweb.com.

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