The Deep Well Project was founded in 1973, digging wells to provide clean, safe water for the Hilton Head Island community.
Since then, it has been the source of emergency assistance to the local community and is supported by individuals, businesses, religious institutions, foundations, clubs, schools and various other organizations. The Deep Well Project both serves and reflects the caring community in which we live.
A predominantly volunteer-based non-profit, with a minimum of paid staff. Charlotte Heinrichs founded the organization as a service to the local community that suffered illness as a result of drinking contaminated water from shallow wells. Over the decades, other needs evolved, and Deep Well evolved as well.
It could be a rent payment between jobs or food for the family when the cupboard runs bare and when cash has all but run out. It could be school uniforms for children or floor repairs or the construction of a much-needed wheelchair ramp. At Deep Well over 90% of our expenses go directly to client programs and services.
Where do we get our food?
For the most part, it’s donated by individuals, merchants and hundreds of local organizations who regularly run food drives for Deep Well — religious institutions, schools, neighborhoods, bridge clubs, civic organizations . . . the list is long. For example, Panera Bread donates a variety of baked goods regularly. And fresh vegetables and fruit usually come from the Heritage Farm in Sea Pines or from Second Helpings. Deep Well purchases the balance of food needed — around 15%.
Helping People Keep a Roof Over Their Heads.
A variety of repair and improvement services, all provided primarily by volunteers, is considered on an individual needs basis. They research all situations in an understanding and fair manner.
- Installation of wheelchair ramps and lifts
- Electrical and Wiring
- Piping and plumbing
- Painting and Caulking
- Flooring repairs
- Window repair and weather-proofing
- Furniture and appliance donations
Rent and Utilities:
Financial aid, in the form of rent and/or utility payments, made directly to the provider, is granted on an emergency basis, generally to individuals who have been residents of Hilton Head Island for at least three months, paying their own rent and utilities, before their application.
Sewer System Assistance:
In collaboration with the Community Foundation of the Lowcountry and Hilton Head PSD#1, Deep Well serves as the application facilitator for low income families who need assistance tapping in to the sewer system. The program provides people with the initial upfront tap-in costs so individually owned septic systems on an aging or failing property, keeping the waters and creeks of Hilton Head safe and clean.
Their children’s programs help them stay engaged in school, giving them the food and medicines they need to stay healthy. Deep Well provides surprises during the holidays that put smiles on their faces for days.
In Early December, we begin stocking our Santa Shop with a broad range of new toys, books, crafts and activities, as well as new clothes for children from ages 1 through 12. Individuals and organizations throughout the island donate toys and clothes, generally at Deep Well discounts.
Scholarship Help at Technical College of the Lowcountry.
While TCL and government grants can often cover 100% of tuition costs while people earn a trade or nursing certification or degree- sometimes students have other barriers keeping them from secondary education and a lucrative and meaningful career.
The average age of TCL students is 27 years of age. Deep Well Project allows non-traditional college students a hand up. Transportation and daycare assistance are examples of some of the ways Deep Well’s Scholarship Program. TCL classes help students get the education they need to secure and retain careers with better playing/less seasonal work options.
As in other areas of support, Deep Well helps with medicines on an individual basis. They also provide referral support and works in concert with organizations such as Volunteers in Medicine (VIM). Often, special medical needs most people take for granted are simply not affordable for families earning marginal incomes. And, without our help, there can be tragic consequences.
We’ve provided emergency dental care, medicines and assistance with eyeglasses. In addition, as a preventative aid, we are able to provide personal hygiene items.
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