In response to the Covid 19 Pandemic, Governor Asa Hutchinson had created the Arkansas Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. This funding is offered to low-income communities throughout Arkansas that has been impacted due to COVID-19, with High Poverty and Significant Minority Populations.
The Arkansas Department of Human Services (DHS) had funds to provide for a one-time funding for organizations that serve the most vulnerable Arkansans through the CARES ACT.
“Osceola Goodfellows” organization met the criteria for these funds. Steve Choals, President, Ed Richardson, Officer and Secetary, and Cindy Leonard with City Hall, worked to provide the Organization with a grant of $15,000.
Osceola Goodfellas, mission and vision that aligns with advancing equity and addressing the needs of the community, and have demonstrated a history of service and leadership since 1946.
Osceola Goodfellows, primary purpose is to provide food at no cost to low income household during Christmas and Easter holidays, usually through fundraising and donations to families in need.
In 1946, Osceola Goodfellows started as a community organization, it has since been Incorporated as a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation, dedicated to needs of low- moderate income families of in Osceola, Mississippi County.
Struggling families have turned to Osceola Goodfellows since 1946, for their holiday dinners. Each year approximately 400 Christmas dinners are distributed and 300 Easter dinners. However, with the Cares Act grant, Osceola can distribute approximately 200 extra dinners.
If the family has a vehicle, the organization will have a line set up with a destinated person to come by a location to receive the necessary boxes for that family, this year, the location was at the Rosenwald Center.
If a family does not have a vehicle, then a member of the organization will drop off the necessary boxes to the address of that family.
This year, the supply of needed dinners has increased, due to Covid-19 and there are more families and individuals without jobs or lack of. With the thanks to the Cares Act Grant, Osceola Goodfellows can distribute approximately 200 extra dinners, with each family receiving, a ham and a chicken.
On behalf of the City of Osceola I would like to extend our prayers and condolences to Jennifer Kennemore and all of Mayor Dickie Kennmore’s family and friends.
For decades the name Dickie Kennemore has been synonymous with Osceola. His commitment to the city and belief in Osceola’s future was dear to him. He spent 28 years as the mayor, during which time he oversaw the building of the OPAR Community Center, the move of City Hall into the former downtown bank building, and most importantly the successful recruitment of numerous large industries to our town. This was in addition to his private work as a real estate and insurance broker.
He often bragged that our residents are what make Osceola great. Mayor Kennemore was always there to inspire others to help this community with his words and example. There was no one who lived in Osceola for any length of time who hadn’t met him for business, at the Country Club, at City Hall, at a public function, drinking coffee at McDonald’s, or working out at the community center. He was a believer that this town was worth fighting for because of the people who called it home. It was for this reason that he chose to live his life here, raise his family here, and it is here that his passing will be hardest felt.
We also remember Mayor Kennemore as a man of faith, who’s convictions in biblical teachings guided his values. He was a long-time member of Osceola Church of Christ and an avid reader of reflections on faith and society.
Altogether, Mayor Kennemore was our personal friend, our community champion, and a man of living convictions. For these reasons and many more, he will be missed.
We would like to share our appreciation with neighboring towns who have sent their condolences to our city and residents.
Finally, we have been given the blessing by the Kennemore family to request that the City of Osceola rename the Osceola Community Center in Dickie’s memory. If approved by the Osceola City Council, a dedication ceremony will be held as soon as COVID restrictions allow.