Pocket change can fulfill dreams

Published 2:07 am Saturday, May 21, 2005

By By RANDI K. PICKLEY / Niles Daily Star
NILES - Saving for a rainy day is a task many residents of Niles take seriously. Spare change is a handy source for tucking money away for both big and small future needs and many people regularly stash it in all sorts of places to use later.
When coins accumulate in a purse or pocket, they not only take up space but they also grow heavy rather quickly. Many of the Michiana residents we spoke to were not only glad to free up the space and lighten the load, but had specific purposes for the savings.
Pat Rupp of Niles was shopping for bedding plants at Shelton's Farm Market with her daughter, Linda Ditto.
Rupp's daughter, Linda, also of Niles, fit the description "like mother, like daughter." She and her husband use the spare change to help their community also. "We are members of the Granger Community Church. Their youth group goes to Chicago to help needy children in the inner-city. Our spare change goes to them to help with the cost of the trip."
Jan LaPorte, a Cassopolis resident, said, "Sometimes I save it for Christmas, sometimes for donations to various things."
Stephan Hensler's wife, Christine, is the recipient of his spare change. "I save it and give it to my wife. I love to give her money." He said Christine, being practical, saves it in money sorting folders and puts it away for safe keeping.
F.M. Sellers and his wife, Marcile, both of South Bend, were spending the afternoon in Niles. When asked what they do with spare change, F.M. replied, "We spend it." His wife concurred. "We used to travel a lot, but now we can't. So we just spend it in the next place that needs it."
Judith Johns of Niles embraced the traditional piggy bank style of saving money. "I have about four big piggy banks," she said. "I put all my change in them until they're full. Then I cash it in to put in a savings account for my grandchildren. Each pig holds about $200. I tried having one pig for each kind of coin, but I gave up on that very quickly."
Jerome Wilson, who moved to Niles a year ago from Chicago, was at Chemical Shoreline Bank when asked about his spare change. He said, "My wife is having a baby. We keep the change in jars or money pouches to put in our child's account. The baby is due on Dec. 25."
If you want to ask someone about the best way to handle money, a good person to ask is one who works for an armored truck service.
Shannon Waite, who is a security guard for Guardian Armored Securities, said, "I save the quarters for the laundromat. The rest I put in a jar. I save it for each Thursday before payday as emergency money."
Lola Rock of Niles stores the spare change in her car. "I toss it in the glove compartment, but with ten grandchildren, it doesn't stay there long," she said.
Former Niles resident, Mary Nigro, who returned to Niles to live with her ailing sister and was shopping at the Niles Big Lots store, said, "I'm in a low income group. I don't really have spare change. I have a friend in Florida who gets assistance from the government. When I stayed with her, she had four big jars full of change in her guest room. I thought to myself, 'How can she save all that money when I'm struggling to make ends meet? That's why I shop at Big Lots. They have good prices."
Gladys Strathos of Niles just throws the change in a jug. "I keep it in a five gallon water jug," she said. "Someday I'll open it when it's ready, but that will take a while."
The big water jugs seem to be a popular. Victor Triplet and his wife Christine live in South Bend and were selecting flowers to put in their garden.