July 14, 2014  |  POSTED BY Wes Thomas

By:  Nan McKenzie May 17, 2014   Motto:        “WE SERVE”      Kari Klehm of the Evergreen Lions Club is an enthusiastic new member of this fine group of people.    The clubs in Evergreen, Kalispell and Columbia Falls, along with Flathead Electric Coop’s “Round Up for Safety”, recently bought a PlusOptix Vision Screener that is being used locally to screen school children.  The Screener can magically ‘read’ eight different vision problems and transfer the information to a computer.  Once the info is on the computer, a flash drive with this information is given to the school so that each child’s vision is permanently recorded, and if there are problems, they can be addressed right away.  As of today, over 5000 local children have been scanned in a fraction of the time it would have taken the school nurses.  If a person can’t afford glasses, the Lions find ways to help.  They partner with LensCrafters to supply folks with affordable vision correction. The Lions Clubs collect your old glasses and sends them on to be reconditioned, and they are sent off again to where they can do some good.  People in other countries where they may not have access to glasses must be very grateful to receive these. When the Flathead County Fair is running, you’ll find the Evergreen Lions near the grandstands, selling water, ice cream bars, pop and other things to raise funds for their club. Last year, the Evergreen Lions gave $10,000 to Sabina Wisher for her special needs daughter, Mikayla, for the Mikayla’s Miracles and Blessings Foundation. This year the recipient of the Evergreen Lions Spaghetti Dinner and Auction was the ABS sports field in Kalispell for a sprinkler system, equipment, and a concession stand.  They have also given generously to a cancer survivor to help with… read more

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Kiwanis Logo


October 8, 2013  |  POSTED BY Dave Dutro

from Nan McKenzie  The Kalispell Kiwanis Club needs Help Helping People    The small organization (it used to be huge) gives and gives and then gives some more. Some of the projects they help with locally are:    

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Talking Good With Maggie Doyne

September 24, 2013  |  POSTED BY OpenDoor

–by Rich Polt,  The Teenager Who Started an Orphanage One morning at the age of 18, fresh out of high school, Maggie Doyne awoke with the feeling that she was not yet ready to move into her freshman dorm. Instead, she wanted to defer college for a year to travel and discover her “inner-self.” It was a decision that would change her life in ways she could never imagine. Four countries in and thousands of miles later, Maggie found herself in the midst of a remote, war-torn village in Nepal. She watched in despair as the Nepalese children would break down rocks into gravel and then sell them for one dollar a day just to buy food. Maggie was compelled to take action. One young girl in particular had touched her heart, so Maggie paid seven dollars to enroll her in school. That was the beginning.

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naomi davidson, aug. 2013

Hunger Doesn’t Take a Holiday

September 17, 2013  |  POSTED BY OpenDoor

By:  Nan McKenzie  The Community Kitchen’s goal is to treat their guests as Jesus would, and they are certainly doing that!     “God keeps it going!”  That’s what Naomi Davidson of the Community Kitchen, the group that feeds the Flathead claims, and she’s right. Something divine is happening, with manna flowing from everywhere to fill the needs of hungry people.  When God calls, many answer, generous folks who donate time, work, food and money to put on 21 dinners a month.  Wow, 24 dinners a month, with each dinner feeding from about 50 to more than 80 folks, with an average of 70 each night.  That’s more than 1,500 good dinners a month! 

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The Sharing Economy

June 25, 2013  |  POSTED BY OpenDoor

–by Rajesh Makwana, syndicated from,    Values and the Sharing Economy We are all painfully familiar with the plethora of statistics that illustrate how unsustainable modern lifestyles have become and how humanity is already consuming natural resources far faster than the planet can produce or renew them. In a bid to reverse these trends, increasing numbers of people are attempting to consume less, reduce waste and recycle more regularly.  The rapid growth of the sharing economy over recent years reflects this growing environmental awareness and commitment to changing unsustainable patterns of consumption. The possibilities for sharing are already endless in many parts of the world, in everything from cars and drills to skills and knowledge. The sharing economy is undeniably taking off - and rightly so.

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North Valley Eagles Club

May 13, 2013  |  POSTED BY Nancy Garrett

  FRATERNAL ORDER OF EAGLES NORTH VALLEY AERIE #4081 It’s probably a safe bet that most of you don’t know that Eagles are altruistic.   This wonderful club is dedicated to serving those who need a hand or a bit of money for medical help. In 2012, more than $59,000 was given to the local Food Bank, the Northwest Veterans Food Pantry, local Boys and Girls Club, Wings, Montana Wounded Warriors, Project Hope, Ray of Hope, Christian Lighthouse Home. That’s a remarkable achievement for a small membership of about 140 Aerie members.

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April 8, 2013  |  POSTED BY Nancy Garrett

“A Hand Up, Not A Handout” For a woman who, with her husband Bob, raised 36 foster children, you’d think Peggy Christensen would slow down, now that her knees are in rough shape.  Well, no, she hasn’t.  Peggy started A Ray of Hope shelter for homeless, hungry and hurting folks in 1999, and now runs two locations and a thrift store to boot!  Angels come in all kinds, and Peggy and her helpers qualify.  Peggy is living now in Helmville, Montana, in a small mountain retreat with cabins, which she fills with folks who are doing their best to stay sober and clean.  Those who come to her here are people who’ve failed over and over to be successful in sobriety.  Peggy has a 60% success rate, remarkable, considering the challenges.  She says that the daily bible talk helps more than anything.

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Guerilla Gardener

March 19, 2013  |  POSTED BY OpenDoor

  A guerilla gardener in South Central LA Ron Finley Gardener                 Ron Finley grows a nourishing food culture in South Central L.A.’s food desert by planting the seeds and tools for healthy eating. Artist and designer Ron Finley couldn’t help but notice what was going on in his backyard. “South Central Los Angeles,” he quips, “home of the drive-thru and the drive-by.” And it’s the drive-thru fast-food stands that contribute more to the area’s poor health and high mortality rate, with one in two kids contracting a curable disease like Type 2 diabetes.

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sen center_0242


March 14, 2013  |  POSTED BY Nancy Garrett

KalispellSenior Center, 403 Second Avenue West in Kalispell   For someone who might be lonely, or feeling poorly, or who just feels they need to get out more, stop by this great center and get to know people.  Who was it who said that a stranger is just a friend I haven’t met yet?  Who knows, there might be someone there who needs your smile and outstretched hand!

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food main_banner


March 4, 2013  |  POSTED BY OpenDoor

      The family of friends at the Flathead Food Bank in the old Gateway West Mall are some of the best, kindest people you’ll ever meet. Everyone walks by with a smile on their face, and laughter sings out wherever you wander in this huge facility.  Executive Director Lori Botkin says she only wants to work in a place where she loves the people and the atmosphere.  She walks the talk:  her more than four hundred volunteers and seven paid staff seem to like their work, because they certainly work hard! 

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