Cornerstone, Mel’s Charities hand out ‘Bags of Joy’

From left: Bobbi Schmittou, Cornerstone Community Bank; Ross Rintelman, Mel’s Charities board member/ambassador; Jody Filo, Cornerstone Community Bank; Tom “Mel” Stanton, Mel’s Charities executive director; Natalie Rohn, Pat Buechler and Becki Schimpf, all of Cornerstone Community Bank.

GRAFTON — Cornerstone Community Bank partnered with Mel’s Charities to deliver 60 “Bags of Joy” to people identified as needing a pick-me-up this holiday season.

“We wanted to ‘turn the tables’ by putting $30,000 back into our local communities through purchasing gift cards/certificates from area businesses who have been long-time supporters of our mission,” said Tom Stanton, executive director of Mel’s Charities. “We then asked these businesses, local food pantries and local non-profit organizations for names of people who were hurting or struggling for any number of reasons. It was a blessing and truly heart-warming to put these bags in the hands of the recipients.”

Each “Bag of Joy” contained a gift box containing a Mel’s Charities T-shirt, mittens and a homemade ornament created by the Mel’s PIGment for a Cause arts group, as well as $500 worth of gift cards for grocery stores, gas stations and restaurants.

“We were happy to partner with Mel’s Charities at this time of year,” said Cornerstone Community Bank President Paul Foy. “As a community bank, we believe in giving back and this was an excellent opportunity for our employees to be part of something that directly impacted many in Ozaukee County.”