Special to the Island Eye News
East Cooper Community Outreach (ECCO) has been presented with the Angel Award by South Carolina’s Secretary of State, Mark Hammond. For sixteen years the Secretary of State has compiled a list of the state’s best charities in order to assist donors with their choices. Only ten non-profit organizations are selected each year for this recognition. A press conference was held at the State House in Columbia followed by a reception in the Secretary of State’s Office.
The Angel Award is presented to ten charities annually who meet several criteria. Each non-profit recipient must spend at least 80 percent of its budget on the programs for its clients. The charity must also be in existence for more than three years and utilize volunteers effectively with little dependence on grants and with no government funding.
Jack Little, ECCO’s Executive Director, said, “This is such an honor to be selected for this prestigious award. There are so many worthy non-profits across the state and we are so pleased to receive this acknowledgement. We have a tremendous Board who leads in meeting the high standards of accountability and transparency. We know that we have a tremendous responsibility to be good stewards of our donors’ resources in our effort of addressing the needs of the working poor.”
Starting in 1989 after Hurricane Hugo by Christ Our King Catholic Church, ECCO has continued to grow to address the needs and barriers, which keep the poor and working poor from moving ahead. Mr. Little goes on to say, ”A huge part of our ability to provide services with little overhead is because of our volunteers. Volunteers give hundreds of hours each week. Their tasks vary from serving as dentists to interviewing clients to working in our food and clothing warehouse. Also, Linda Grausso, our Director of Operations, is to be commended for her diligence in guiding our staff toward these high ideals. Our staff is very dedicated to providing our services with dignity while instilling hope for change.”
East Cooper Community Outreach (ECCO) strives to provide safety net services for our low income neighbors while empowering them to create better lives for themselves, their families and their communities.
ECCO provides emergency assistance for food, clothing, household furnishings, and financial needs. As well as, ongoing services including medical, dental, prescription drug assistance, education and counseling.