Woman creates sweet way to help Clarion County vets

Joan Kriebel makes tiny sleighs, and the sale of those sleighs has generated money to help needy veterans in Clarion County.

The sleighs aren’t made of wood or steel, but candy and love. Each sleigh has candy cane skids, a candy bar body and six minis on top.

Kriebel said she has made the sleighs for the past several years, including the past two for Community Action’s veterans programs.

“There are a lot of veterans out there who are in need of assistance,” Kriebel said. “Sometimes they come forward and sometimes they don’t. We just want to give them an opportunity to come and get the help they need.”

According to Kriebel, $1,000 was made last year and this year $1,800 was donated.

“The vets put their lives on the line for us, and this is the least we can do for them,” said Kriebel, whose father was a veteran and whose great-uncle was killed during the attack on Pearl Harbor. “It is touching to be able to say ‘thank you’ in a small way.”

Jada Shields, case manager at Community Action, said Kriebel’s efforts and the money raised are significant to the agency and to her personally.

“I have veterans in my family, and when I spoke to Joan it was very touching that someone would take their time to put something together,” Shields said.

“There are things our program can cover and things the program can’t cover. It is donations like Joan’s that really help when someone needs something off the wall. Sometimes, it just matters to be remembered.”

Kriebel said although the sleighs are her project, “it is the generosity of folks who gave donations” that made it possible to finish.