PITTSBURG —  “I don’t know what I’d do without him.” 

Pittsburg resident Janet Pownsend has used the services provided by the SKIL Resource Center Inc. for many years. 

With the help of Pittsburg resident and Pittsburg State University student Mason Sutton, she can get the assistance she needs. On Tuesday, he helped her get to the annual SKIL picnic. 

“He helps me, [get around]” she said. “I appreciate it, I don’t know what I’d do without him.” 

SKIL is a nonprofit organization which provides services to the elderly and people with disabilities of any age. The organization serves approximately 350 people and helps with individual and systems advocacy, information and referral services, peer support, independent living skills training, deinstitutionalization, and home and community based services. 

“We are helping them to learn to advocate for themselves, as well as keeping them in their own homes [out of assisted living centers or group homes] and out in the community instead of being shut away,” Independent Living Coordinator Christina Blair said. 

On Tuesday, SKIL hosted its annual picnic, this year indoors at the Frisco Event Center. 

SKIL President and CEO Shari Coatney said she was pleased with the facility and the turnout at the event. 

“The big thing here is that the event brings customers, attendants and the community together and we always have a good turnout for Pittsburg, and that shows the good support we have from people in Crawford County,” Coatney said. 

The 20-year-old picnic tradition, “gives them the chance to get out and visit with old friends, meet new people, have a good meal,” Blair said. “It also gives them an opportunity to be out and around people. It also gives us a chance to let people know about our organization.”