United Way collection underway 11.12.08

Written by David Green.

When times get tough, the funding needs of United Way agencies tend to grow stronger.

The American Red Cross, the Counseling Vouching Program, legal services, dental clinic, Associated Charities, HOPE Community Center, Housing First affordable housing, Hospice of Lenawee and others—the county-wide programming by the Lenawee United Way addresses a variety of needs and ages.

“There is no doubt that these are very challenging times in our economy, but that makes the need all the more urgent,” said  the United Way’s Amy Palmer. “Many of our agencies are overwhelmed with the increased volume of need from working families and individuals who require extra support to help make ends meet.”           

A portion of the county collection is returned directly to communities. Nearly $5,000 was recently distributed among four Morenci programs from United Way funds collected last year, but that was far short of the requests made.

“Nobody was fully funded through United Way,” said Morenci chair Brad Frederick, “but everybody requesting funds got something.”

More than $11,000 was divided among five agencies the previous year and more than $10,000 was requested from five agencies this year. With the steep drop in donations, four programs received limited funding from the United Way and two programs received direct donations from a local industry.

“There wasn’t enough money to go around,” said Morenci board member Simone Haas. “I thought it was just awful.”

As a co-owner of Roth Fabricating, Haas said she and co-owner Shane Sarnac decided to fill the gap.

“We’ve done well this year so it was our way of giving back to the community,” she said.

Roth gave $1,000 to the city’s Summer Recreation Program and $1,500 to the winter clothing campaign at Morenci Elementary School, to buy coats, hats and mittens for children in need of warm winter gear.

The local United Way allocations board—Frederick, Haas, Jennifer Blaker, Rosemary Dickerson and Kyle Griffith—awarded $1,000 to the Summer Recreation program; $1,838 to Stair Public Library; $1,000 to the Morenci Elementary School PTO for the fifth grade camping experience; and $1,160 to the Morenci Fire Department.

In order to receive funding, agencies now must meet 501c3 federal guidelines and address one of four areas: basic needs; employment and self-sufficiency; health; and youth at risk.

Any donation of $100 or more can be designated for a particular eligible agency.

Anyone making donations through payroll deductions should file a pledge form by the end of November, Frederick said, and individuals should make gifts by mid-December at the latest.

To obtain a pledge form, call Frederick at 517/605-1020.

 

  • Front.splash
    Water Fun—Carter Seitz and Colson Walter take a fast trip along a plastic sliding strip while water from a sprinkler provides the lubrication. The boys took a break from tie-dyeing last week at Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program to cool off in the water.
  • Front.starting
    BIKE-A-THON—Children in Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program brought their bikes last Tuesday to participate in a bike-a-thon. Riders await the start of the event at the elementary school before being led on a course through town by organizer Leonie Leahy.
  • Front.drum
    on your mark, get set, drum!—Drew Joughin (black shirt), Maddox Joughin and Kaleea Braun took the front row last week when Angela Rettle and assistants led the Stair District Library Summer Reading Program kids in a session of cardio drumming. The sports and healthy living theme continued yesterday with a Mini Jamboree at Lake Hudson State Park arranged by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Next week’s program features the Flying Aces Frisbee show.
  • Front.art.park
    ART PARK—A design created by Poggemeyer Design Group shows a “pocket art park” in the green space south of the State Line Observer building. The proposal includes a 12-foot sculpture based on a design created by Morenci sixth grade student Klara Wesley through a school and library collaboration. A wooden band shell is located at the back of the lot. The Observer wall would be covered with a synthetic stucco material. City council members are considering ways to fund the estimated $125,000 project and perhaps tackling construction one step at a time.
  • Front.train
    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks

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