Financial assistance from Binc is designed to be a one-time, short-term boost to get a bookseller through an immediate crisis. Rather than providing on-going, long-term financial support, Binc financial assistance is meant to get the bookseller onto a firm footing and allow them to address the bigger problems facing their household. Having that as the goal, we realize that the underlying problem which causes a hardship is often larger than our assistance can cure. For that reason, Binc’s help doesn’t stop when our check is mailed. When a bookseller comes to Binc for assistance our immediate concern is to help to get the household stabilized. Only after a bookseller and their family is out from under the immediate danger of losing their home or having the utilities shut off, are they able to focus on longer term changes that need to take place within the household. Getting each applicant back to a place of financial equilibrium is our goal for each individual case.
For every applicant, Binc supplies a number of additional resources tailored to their specific need, to be used in combination with the Foundation’s assistance. Over the years, an extensive Resource Directory containing a collection of reliable and well regarded organizations has been compiled. (These resources are on our website and are available to any interested party, whether they are booksellers or not.) Each recommended organization has a special area of expertise, whether it is utility assistance, help with housing issues, financial counseling or providing the everyday necessities of food and clothing. With additional support from the referred agencies it is Binc’s hope that the bookseller will continue on their road to financial health.
Big help can come in small packages
National assistance resources such as 2-1-1, FEMA, Red Cross and THAW can usually be accessed from any community in the nation. However, much of the charitable assistance in the U.S. does not come from a national source, it is based in our local communities and is often carried out by our neighbors at a very grass roots level. For this reason the resources provided by Binc include a variety of agencies specific to the applicant’s geographic area. This can range from local churches and religious organizations (Catholic Social Services, Jewish Family Services, etc.), community groups (locally based thrift stores, food pantries and hospitals) or local chapters of national organizations (Salvation Army, Community Action Network, etc.). These community resources may be small, but they can usually react quickly and make a huge difference in the lives of the members of their communities. Just like Binc, often the most effective assistance comes in a small package.
Assistance isn’t a one-stop shop.
Finding one’s way out of a financial crisis is often a matter of piecing together help from a number of sources. It is hard work and can often seem overwhelming without someone to help guide you. The majority of our applicants have never needed or requested any type of assistance before, and knowing where to start is often the toughest step. It is our hope that with the financial assistance and connections to local and national charities provided by Binc, the bookseller can work through their current hardship and once again be able to focus on the job they love.