The Help Center Inc background & history
The Audrain County Human Development Corporation was organized in 1965 by a group of Mexico residents in an effort to coordinate services to the families of Audrain County living in poverty. For many years this organization was a small food pantry and a thrift store located on East Breckenridge St. in Mexico. In 2009 the Board of Directors changed the name to The Help Center, Inc. and in late 2013 & 2014 they began the process of planning for growth and expansion. They began to work on plans for growth and Alan & Susan Atkins donated a parcel of land at 403 Fairground in Mexico and with financial donations, they purchased additional adjoining land, a total of 7 acres including the address of 409 Fairground, which is now the address of The Help Center. Planning and fundraising began in earnest and with the tremendous support of the Mexico MO community, grants from charitable foundations, a NAP tax credit and the endless support of Mr. Dudley Miller, they began construction of a new building, which was completed and opened in June of 2015. The new building was named "The Laura Miller George Help Center", in honor of Dudley Miller's mother, Mrs. Laura Mae Miller. She spent her life helping others and we honored to serve others under her namesake. The original portion of the building was 15,000 Sq. Ft. and housed the much-enhanced food pantry and thrift store. In 2017 the board of directors recognized the need for growth of the thrift store portion of our non-profit business and by May of 2018 had added on 7000 Sq. Ft to the back of the building for a thrift store warehouse. We are now a 22.000 Sq. Ft. facility and utilize every square foot to better serve those in need.
The Thrift Store continues to be at the core of our non-profit business as our major source of funding.
Our primary mission is to help eliminate hunger in our community by providing supplemental food assistance to our food insecure neighbors. As an agency of The Food Bank for Central and Northeast Missouri, we give all our supplemental food to our families. We strive to raise awareness of hunger and poverty while working toward solutions to eliminate them. Our services include:
The Food Pantry: Monthly supplemental food assistance and emergency food
The Thrift Store: Selling used clothing and household items as well as donating these same type items in times of need
Prescription Assistance: Provide limited and emergency drug prescription purchases
Emergency Assistance: Limited short-term assistance and coordination with other agencies
Mentoring: An effort to help break the cycle of poverty
We envision a community in which the food insecure has access to sufficient nutritious food.
Serving families in need by providing food and support, while educating the community in collaboration with others who address solutions for these needs.
We believe that access to nutritious food is a basic human right. We are committed to responding to the needs of our families through food distribution and support services.