COLORADO SPRINGS — Neighbors helping neighbors is so important in a year like 2020 as we all work to rebound during the pandemic. One local organization wants to introduce you to other nonprofits that are making a difference.
During the month of December, Council of Neighbors and Organizations, otherwise known as CONO, launched the 'CONO Cares Campaign.' During the campaign, the organization will be highlighting nonprofits in our area through a series of virtual events.
"I just thought it would be a great way to boost morale during this time when so many people are somewhat struggling in different ways," said Stephanie Surch, director of the organization. "We recognized people need to have forums to talk about how they've been affected and how their neighborhood has been affected by the pandemic."
CONO has been bringing communities together in El Paso and Teller Counties for 43 years. Their goal is to empower neighbors and neighborhoods to take action in their community. They educate people on things like city and local government, and also bring together people for clean-ups in their neighborhoods or block parties.
As part of the campaign, CONO hosted a virtual neighborhood networking group, which is much like an online support group. Part of the campaign is also a series of webinars featuring local non-profit organizations like the Solid Rock Community, Westside Cares, Springs Recovery Connection, Kids on Bikes, Knobhill Urban Arts District, and the Chinook Center.
Jere Rose works at the Solid Rock Community Food Pantry, which gives food to people in need in South East Colorado Springs.
"Here we pride ourselves in helping everybody that's in need regardless of your status or situation," said Rose. "If you need food and you can make it here, then you'll get some food.
The food pantry opened about five months ago. In the month of November, it helped feed nearly 1,800 people.
"I think it's very important now that more than ever we do know our neighbor," said Rose.