This is part of a weekly series that highlights the organizations or people behind one of the Foundation’s funds.
A nurse by training, Cheryl White says she’s got “a caring gene.”
And that’s why it’s so important to her to help people who are uninsured, or underinsured, get the medical care they desperately need.
“It’s a crime that we don’t all have insurance and have access to physicians and dentists,” said White, the Executive Director of Centre Volunteers in Medicine. “There are so many people in the county who don’t have access to it.”
Centre Volunteers in Medicine works to help those people by providing free medical and dental care to qualified local residents who are in need of such services.
During the last fiscal year, the organization, located at 2520 Green Tech Drive, Suite D, in State College, cared for more than 1,300 patients in its medical clinic and more than 1,200 in its dental clinic.
White said the clinic’s patients are hardworking, good people, but that they are often stuck in a vicious cycle, in which a person who has chronic health problems has trouble keeping a full-time job, and not having a full-time job keeps them from having insurance and taking care of their health problems.
Centre Volunteers in Medicine, which has been operating since 2003, has two funds with the Centre County Community Foundation, one medical and one dental, and other funds established by community members also distribute some money to the organization.
White said more funding would help the organization provide care for more patients and reduce delays. People who are interested in donating to one of the organization’s CCCF funds can contact us at 814-237-6229, and White encourages people who want more information about the organization to check out their website, or call them at 814-231-4043 to arrange for a tour so that they can see first-hand the good work Centre Volunteers in Medicine does.
White said access to health care is a basic right that all people should have, regardless of their economic circumstances.
“No one should have to suffer or die because they cannot afford medical coverage or a visit with a doctor,” she said.