Students spent the morning in community service as part of the Barry County United Way Day of Caring kicking off the annual United Way campaign. “Where there’s a you, there’s a way,” said executive director Lani Forbes reinforcing this year’s theme. She encouraged people to support the United Way programs financially and through service to the community.
Forbes said United Way organizers have set a $650,000 fundraising goal for the county and before the kickoff breakfast was over she reported more than $135,000 had already been raised.
She reminded everyone that every dollar donated to the United Way is valued and can make a difference. “A dollar per week provides 364 pounds of food to the Fresh Food Initiative. Two dollars and 32 cents puts a book from Imagination Library into one of our children's mailboxes,” Forbes said. “Five dollars provides a meal to a homebound senior.”
Because the United way administrative costs are covered by an endowment, every dollar donated goes directly to United Way programs and services to help families in Barry County.
According to United Way statistics residents living within the Thornapple Kellogg School district accessed numerous United Way services throughout the year:
- 216 families received utility assistance
- 74 seniors received Meals on Wheels
- 5 TK families stayed at Green Gables shelter
- 225 youth participated in 4-H
- 448 youth participated in Thornapple Area Parks and Recreation
- 76 kids shopped for backpacks and school supplies
- More than 4,800 times, people accessed food assistance
- 349 children receive free books through Imagination Library
- $135,500 was returned to 93 families who accessed free tax assistance
- More than $318,000 was invested through programs and agency services in the TK District
- 124,648 pounds of food were received by TK area residents
TKHS student council members agreed it was a morning well spent giving back to a community that generously supports their school.