Encouraging literacy in kindergarten students
POWER, Shelby County United Way women’s initiative group started a kindergarten tutoring program in 2015 in one school, and has now expanded into 5 elementary schools with the help of partner companies and community volunteers. Volunteers are asked to commit to a weekly or every other week one hour time slot, and are required to complete a background check. In the 2017-2018 school year 97 different volunteers filled 45 different weekly slots at 5 elementary schools in Shelby County. POWER received the “Friend of Education” award for the 2nd year in a row from the Sidney Education Association for their support in encouraging literacy in education for kindergarten students.
If you are interested in volunteering please contact Amy West at 937-492-2101 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Day of Action
Local company's employees show their volunteering spirit
Each June, communities around the world come together to harness the volunteer spirit and improve the conditions in which they live. In 2018 during the United Way National Day of Action 23 local companies with over 167 of their employees and volunteers completed 18 service projects, and provided over 850 volunteer hours. One of the largest volunteer groups, Emerson Climate Technologies, removed wallpaper and painted in a mudroom and bathroom at Clear Creek Farm. Other projects included painting multiple City of Sidney Park shelter houses, picnic tables, and playground equipment, mulching at the court square, landscaping at the domestic violence shelter, painting inside the Historical Society, and replacing the fence around the community garden.
Student United Way
Area youth helping to better our community
Student United Way was launched in 2017, with one junior and one senior from all 10 high schools in Shelby county participating. Four United Way board members help lead the initiative, along with Executive Director, Scott Barr. Throughout the school year students attend monthly sessions where they learn about the Shelby County United Way, funded programs, and issues facing residents in Shelby County. During the course of their term they are tasked with distributing $10,000 to organizations in our community. They choose the impact areas they think youth in our area are most affected by, and then invite nonprofit groups to submit grant applications for projects in those areas. Students review the applications, after narrowing down the list invite the remaining groups to do a personal presentation, and choose how to allocate the funds to those organizations.
The students become more educated about the needs in our community, the organizations that are meeting those needs, and in the process learn how to take ownership of bettering our community.
Imagination Library helps better prepare children for kindergarten
Reading to your child from birth is one of the most important activities you can do to ensure he or she is prepared for school and also prepared for life, research tells us. Sharing reading time not only helps introduce your baby to language but also aids in proper brain development and assists in strengthening your bond as parent and child.
Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library was launched in 1996 for preschoolers in Sevier County, Tennessee, as a gift of encouragement for the children of her Smoky Mountain homeland. The program has since grown into an early literacy program for children under the age of 5.
In March of 2015, the Shelby County United Way collaborated with the Shelby County Libraries and many community funding partners to adopt Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library for Shelby County youth under the age of 5. At no cost to the family, an age appropriate book is mailed monthly to the family’s address.
- Children enrolled in Imagination Library are better prepared for kindergarten.
- Children enrolled in Imagination Library are read to more often.
- Children enrolled in Imagination Library have more books and visits to the local libraries than children not enrolled.
- Wilson Health is enrolling all infants born at the birthing center.
- Over 2400 children in Shelby County under the age of 5 are enrolled in the program, which equates to 69%.
- More than 60,000 books have been mailed since the launch of the program in March 2015.
The children’s classic The Little Engine That Could is the first book of each library and Look Out Kindergarten, Here I Come! By Nancy Carlson is the final book in the collection.
Families can register to receive books by visiting www.imaginationlibrary.com and click ENROLL NOW.
A digital learning initiative that teaches our youth the skills to cultivate character and maintain healthy relationships throughout their lives.
The NFL and United Way have teamed up to launch a new digital learning initiative that teaches students the skills to cultivate character and maintain healthy relationships throughout their lives.
Character PlaybookTM is an innovative digital learning experience that uses evidence-based strategies to educate students on how to cultivate and maintain healthy relationships during their critical middle school years. The graphic novel style of the course engages students in interactive educational activities that challenge them to better understand their own values and relationships with others.
The six modules cover key concepts around positive character development, social-emotional learning (SEL), and building healthy relationships.
- Analyzing Influences
- Understanding Emotions and Managing Emotions
- Communicating Effectively
- Resolving Conflicts
- Stepping In
- Making Decisions
The course allows students to engage with true-to-life scenarios that include bystander intervention strategies and positive relationship examples. The Character Playbook curriculum was vetted by prominent experts on social-emotional learning and healthy relationship development.
Accessible by computer and tablet, Character Playbook contains formative assessments and pre- and post-surveys which are used to track knowledge gains and changes in attitudes and behaviors. The online modules are accompanied by robust offline lesson plans and discussion guides to extend the concepts and drive lasting impact.
The Shelby County United Way is pleased to announce that eight area middle schools have implemented the web-based curriculum, funded fully by Shelby County United Way.
2-1-1 is Shelby County’s information and referral service for people in need.
2-1-1 is Shelby County’s information and referral service for people in need.
Every day, thousands of people across the U.S. turn to 2-1-1 for information and support – whether financial, domestic, health, or disaster-related. 2-1-1 is a free, confidential referral and information helpline and website that connects people from our community to essential health and human services they need, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
2-1-1 can be accessed by phone or computer. A toll-free call to 2-1-1 connects you to a community resource specialist in our area who can put you in touch with local organizations that provide critical services that can improve – and save – lives.
Through 2-1-1, you’ll find information about:
- Supplemental food and nutrition programs
- Shelter and housing options
- Rent/utility assistance
- Transportation services
- Medical and dental care
- Support for individuals with mental illness or special needs
- Substance abuse prevention and rehabilitation
- Support for victims of domestic violence or crime
- Disaster relief
- Support for aging parents and senior services
Shelby County 2-1-1 is funded by support from:
City of Sidney
Shelby County Commissioners
Shelby County Health Department
Shelby County Job and Family Services
Shelby County Board of Developmental Disabilities
Tri County Board of Mental Health & Recovery
Call 2-1-1 anytime, or visit www.shelbycounty211.org
Providing medical services to the uninsured in Shelby County
Compassionate Care of Shelby County provides medical, dental, and laboratory services to citizens of Shelby County who are living without access to health care because they have no insurance or have unattainable deductibles/premiums based on their income.
Potential patients must meet income qualifications by being 250% at or below federal poverty guidelines. Many Compassionate Care patients are employed but cannot get insurance or are unable to afford the medical care offered.
With the help of volunteers, the clinic can provide services including primary care medical and dental visits, chronic disease management, GYN, lab services, diabetic and nutritional consultation, and referrals.
In 2018, Compassionate Care provided a total of 5,144 medical and dental visits to clients.
The faith-based clinic, through its services, serves the uninsured or underinsured of Shelby County and reduces non-urgent visits to the ER and urgent care. Compassionate Care maintains a strong relationship with Wilson Health and benefits from many of their providers who volunteer at the clinic.
Clear Creek Farm
A place where a child’s heart finds a home.
Clear Creek Farm provides a loving home and a better life for at-risk youth who are without a clean and safe permanent residence. The goal of the organization is to have youth living in the facilities long enough to gain stability in their lives and develop life skills needed for their future.
Clear Creek Farm provides:
- Independent living skills
- 24-hour supervision
- Family-model environment
- Healthy meals
- Routine structure and discipline
Youth are prepared with the necessary skills to become successful young adults once they are out on their own. With proper guidance and structure, graduates of Clear Creek Farm are better prepared to make positive choices in their lives, breaking the cycle of making poor decisions.
With Shelby County United Way funding, at any given time, 5-6 Shelby County Youth reside at Clear Creek Farm.
Graduates of the program have gone on to enroll in college at Bluffton University, Ball State University, Wright State University, University of Cincinnati, and Sinclair. Others have transitioned into the workforce at companies such as Honda and Kroger.
For more information visit: http://www.clearcreekfarm.org/
Day Break Adult Day Services
“My daughter doesn’t have to worry about me being alone during the day.”
“I am an 81-year old man who has raised my family and now live with one of my children. I started coming to Day Break Adult Day Services two days a week. Since getting to know everyone better, I now come five days a week. I’ve made a lot of new friends and we have a good time together. I wasn’t sure if it was going to be a good fit at first, but I’m glad I came. It’s a lot more fun than sitting at home by myself, and I know my daughter doesn’t have to worry about me being home alone during the day.
Testimonials like this prove that Day Break is meeting its mission to provide supervision and health care in a social setting to promote continued independence of adults.
The center’s purpose is to promote the participants’ health, prevent illness and further disability, restore and maintain a maximum level of function, and empower each individual to provide for themselves as best as they can achieve.
Day Break Adult Day Services provides respite as well as therapeutic and recreational activities for up to forty-three clients who are at risk of premature long-term placement.
Clients are transported door to door daily and are provided the noon meal and snacks on the site located in the lower level of Fair Haven Shelby County Home.
Hours of operation 7:30 am to 3:30 pm and other hours for clients considered. The Day Services Director maintains an excellent communication with the clients’ families and caregivers to ensure continuity and appropriate care.
For more information, visit https://fairhavenservices.com/our-services/adult-day-services/
The Shelby County Arc’s Camp Dalanda provides a traditional overnight experience for middle and high school youth with developmental disabilities
Camp Dalanda is one of many programs developed by the Shelby County Arc. Camp Dalanda provides a traditional overnight camping experience for middle and early high school-age students with developmental disabilities
Shelby County Arc provides services that promote the social and recreational opportunities for people with developmental disabilities. Activities and services in addition to Camp Dalanda include:
- Summer Recreation Camp - a week-long day camp held every summer for individuals age six to 22 who have developmental disabilities.
- Friday Night Out - a monthly social event for adults with developmental disabilities that includes an evening of themed activities and a meal.
- Teen Night Out - a monthly social event for teenagers with developmental disabilities that includes an evening of themed activities and a meal.
- Parents Night Out - a respite program for caregivers of young children with developmental disabilities.
- Family Swim Nights - two evenings of swimming at the Sidney Municipal Pool for individuals with developmental disabilities, their families and friends.
- Multiple Disability Classroom Grants - grants awarded to multiple disability classrooms in our city and county schools to purchase items like specialized software and adaptive equipment for students.
- Arc Resource Library - shelves of informative and educational books on a variety of disability-related topics available for free loan.
- Welcome Baskets - baskets are filled with basic household supplies and delivered to adults with developmental disabilities who are moving into their own homes for the first time.
- Arc Bowling League - individuals with and without developmental disabilities bowl one Sunday a month for six months at Bel-Mar Lanes.
- Family Skate Night - Two evenings of roller skating at Rolling Hills Skate for individuals with developmental disabilities, their families and friends.