News From Terre Haute, Indiana

November 4, 2013

A simple test for Family By Choice

Dianne Frances D. Powell
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — This is what local non-profit, Families By Choice, asks the public to do.

The organization launched the fundraising campaign last month where it asks people to take five minutes to pray, meditate and learn about Families By Choice by visiting its website, www.families by

“Give us five minutes,” said founder Muriel Ryan.

 “And if it sounds like we’re doing what we ought to be doing, give us five dollars,” she said.

The contributions — one time or recurring — can also be done through the organization's website. The donations are tax deductible based on a person’s tax status, according to a Families By Choice release.

Founded in 2007 by Ryan and her husband, Bernard, Families By Choice helps the homeless and the hungry in the community. It runs transitional housing and works with other charities to distribute food to those in need.

But it also needs support.

In an Oct. 24 interview with the Tribune-Star, Ryan shared the story of a man who the organization has helped before. The man reached out to her and told her he wants to complete the GED because he recently became a father. He needed Ryan’s help.

“That costs nothing,” she said.

“There’s so much we can do in the community that won’t cost a cent but there are other things you can’t do without money, and paying the utilities is one of them.”

So, the charity needs the community’s support “to keep the doors open,” according to its Facebook page.

“Families by Choice …  needs $5 a month from 800 people or contributions equal to that to cover monthly expenses,”  according to a release.

In a recent Facebook post, Families By Choice asked its followers to complete the sentence: “I believe that Families by Choice deserves a $5 a month donation because...”

One answer was from the organization’s board president, Theressa Bynum.

“FBC makes a small blessing go a long way,” she wrote.