By JUDY KROEGER
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
“Be kind and love,” reads the door of the mobile health van operated by Rendu Services. The quote is by Sr. Rosalie Rendu, a French Daughter of Charity in the 18th and 19th centuries and, more than 200 years later, Rendu Services fulfills her commitment to the underserved.
The Dunbar Township-based human services organization has added a second building to its site at the entrance to the former Pechin Shopping Village that will allow more space for its monthly food bank, among other uses. The building was blessed Tuesday.
Rendu Services holds a distribution site for the Fayette County Community Action Food Bank that serves the Dunbar area. The site offers food, sundries and the chance for families to access services to manage their lives.
Msgr. Raymond Riffle, managing director of Catholic Charities for the Diocese of Greensburg, and a board member, prayed and blessed the building and, later, blessed those who help the needy through Rendu Services. He said God had blessed “the stones that hold up this building. Bless the living stones and provide the heart of this service.”
Former president of Rendu Services, Sr. Margaret Tuley, Daughter of Charity, talked about Sr. Rendu, who always helped the poor. “She lived through the French Revolution in Paris. There are now always flowers at her grave. The sisters don’t put them there. Grateful people put them there.”
Tuley then talked about Rendu Services, named after the sister.
“The only reason we’re here is for the people we serve.” She talked about stake holders. “People come monthly for food, the team and volunteers, our friends The Bruderhof. We’re grateful for the ambiance of this new building. The Rendu Services Board of Directors, I know they will be grateful.”
She said Rendu Services began in 2000 and has three sponsoring groups of religious in its member board: Daughters of Charity, Sisters of Charity of Greensburg and Sisters of Charity of Nazareth, Ky.
Tuley said the community is also a stake holder, with “collaborators from throughout the county and the diocese.”
Tuley concluded, “I have been deeply moved by the love and affection here. It was a great blessing to me to minister side by side with each of you wonderful people. I thank God for each of you, and I thank you for all you have done and will continue to do.”
Sr. Catherine Meinert, Sister of Charity, is the chairwoman of the member board. “The Daughters of Charity had a dream to serve people in Fayette County. It’s the heart of the sisters, the board and the volunteers.”
Dunbar resident Carmella Hardy said she was raised on Pechin Hill. “Sullivan D’Amico had a big dream,” she said referring to Pechin Shopping Village, which used to be located near Rendu Services. Rendu Services has its office in D’Amico’s former house. “I thought the building would come down,” Hardy said. “It’s wonderful what they’ve done. They work to expand literacy for adults and increase health screenings.”
Rendu Services provides a wide variety of aid.
The mobile health van focuses on the promotion of health awareness and non-invasive medical procedures, like blood pressure screenings.
Rendu Services works with the Fayette County Housing Authority to coordinate events and help residents develop their own activities. Children’s activities include 4-H and Cloverbuds Clubs, homework help, games, snacks, computer usage and other activities.
Adult activities include computer-based education, information and referral, bingo, arts and crafts.
Families enjoy movie nights, cook-outs, parties, community garden and health promotion.
Another service is parish/congregational nursing. Rendu Services bring professional nursing to the parish congregational setting with a holistic approach that focuses on practice within the faith community. The program offers speakers’ workshops on many health topics.
Rendu Services partners with St. Vincent de Paul in Uniontown to assist in case management and basic needs assessment to aid in emergency situations.
When she first came to Fayette County, Tuley said the sisters contacted about 50 human services agencies to discover needs and gaps. Now, nearly a decade later, Rendu Services continues to collaborate with many health and human service agencies to deliver a network of services.
For more information, call 724-277-8680.

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