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United Way of Inner Wisconsin



United Way of Inner Wisconsin News


United Way of Inner Wisconsin Announces 2016 Grant Recipients

  • The United Way of Inner Wisconsin Board of Directors approved plans to distribute $505,942 in grants in south Wood and Adams Counties in 2016 during its board meeting May 13, 2015. 
  • Programs that receive United Way funding must demonstrate they are making an impact in four strategy areas:  Education, Income, Health, and Safety Net Services.  United Way will be distributing $478,197 in south Wood County and $27,745 in Adams County.
  • United Way of Inner Wisconsin will raise these funds during its 2015 campaign this fall.  The United Way campaign runs from September 1, 2015 to October 31, 2015.  2016 allocations are contingent on enough funds being raised this fall. 
  • Click here to view the 2016 Allocations word


Stuff the School Bus Announces Changes in 2015

  • The Stuff the School Bus committee for south Wood County is excited to announce changes to its annual school supply distribution event for 2015.  This year, families who wish to participate will be required to pre-register, which will significantly reduce the amount of time standing in line.  In the past, participants waited in line, sometimes for up to two hours.
  • Families can pre-register from now until August 1st.  Applications were distributed to all students in the Nekoosa, Port Edwards and Wisconsin Rapids school districts – either sent home in the weekly folders or in monthly newsletters.
  • Applications can be picked up at:  Boys and Girls Club of the Wisconsin Rapids Area (as well as the Mead, Nekoosa and Port Edwards locations), United Way of Inner Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Rapids Public Schools Central Office. Applications can also be downloaded below. Applications will NOT be mailed out to anyone.
  • Applications must be returned to United Way of Inner Wisconsin (351 Oak Street, Wisconsin Rapids, WI  54494) by August 1, 2015.  Later in August, families will receive a postcard informing them of their time-slot for pick up during Stuff the Desk on August 15, 2015.
  • Stuff the Bus will be asking local businesses and individuals to collect/donate school supplies from July 13 – August 6, 2015.  School supplies will be dropped off at the Stuff the School Bus drive on August 6, 2015 during Lunch by the River at Veteran’s Memorial Park (11:30am – 1:00pm).  School supplies will be distributed to students in need during Stuff the Desk on August 15, 2015 at Lincoln High School (1801 16th St. S., Wisconsin Rapids) from 8:00am – 11:30am.
  • Stuff the School Bus is a community collaborative effort to collect and distribute school supplies to students in need.  All families who are in financial need are eligible.
  • For more information, please contact United Way’s 2-1-1.
  • Click here to download the Stuff the School Bus 2015 Application Formicon

United Way of Inner Wisconsin Distributes 2015 Help Guides

  • Click here to download the Help Guide for South Wood County 2015icon
  • Thanks to a Bridge Grant from Incourage Community Foundation, United Way of Inner Wisconsin was able to distribute over 10,000 Help Guides in the community in March and April.  This is the seventh year United Way of Inner Wisconsin has partnered with Incourage Community Foundation on Help Guides.
  • The Help Guide is a listing of common questions asked by individuals who call United Way’s 2-1-1 call center.  These questions include “How do I apply for unemployment?” and “Where can I go for food?”
  • This year brochures went home with every student in the Nekoosa, Port Edwards and Wisconsin Rapids School Districts; as well as Assumption Catholic Schools and Immanuel Lutheran School.  Help Guides were also dropped off at local day care centers, non-profit organizations, government agencies, clinics, banks, gas stations and churches.
  • If your business or organization would like to receive Help Guides to display, please contact the United Way of Inner Wisconsin office at 715-421-0390.  United Way has additional materials to display including FamilyWize Prescription Drug Discount Cards, enTouch applications (free cell phones for individuals who qualify for certain government programs can qualify for a free cell phone), and 2-1-1 materials (fact cards, posters, etc.).


Local Volunteers Prepare for Disaster

  • 21 volunteers attended the Disaster Volunteer Reception Center Training (VRC) last week, and a total of 10 new volunteers joined the VRC team.  There are now a total of 31 volunteers registered to assist in a VRC in the event of a disaster.
  • United Way of Inner Wisconsin’s Volunteer Center facilitated the training on March 10 and 12 at the Wisconsin Rapids Lion’s Club.
  • During a disaster, there are two types of volunteers:  spontaneous and affiliated.  Affiliated volunteers have a relationship with a volunteer organization, such as American Red Cross, and have been trained and vetted.  Spontaneous volunteers are unaffiliated and may not be trained, but may still have skills, energy and compassion to share after a disaster. 
  • In the event of a disaster, any spontaneous volunteers who arrive at a disaster scene will be directed to the VRC, where they will fill out an application, be interviewed and screened, matched with a disaster volunteer opportunity, trained and fitted with a wristband before being sent back out to the disaster scene.  The VRC is staffed by volunteers. 
  • Day one of the training was lecture, explaining what happens during a disaster, what a VRC is and why it’s important.  Day two was a hands-on exercise.  At the end of day two, participants were asked to consider joining the VRC team.
  • VRC volunteers are asked to:  fill out an application; agree to be screened; have their photo taken for credentials; attend future trainings/exercises; and be accessible in the event of a disaster.
  • The Volunteer Center thanks the Wisconsin Rapids Lion’s Club for hosting the event and providing several volunteers to become a part of the VRC team.  The Volunteer Center also thanks its two dinner sponsors, Tropical Smoothie Café and Domino’s. 
  • The Disaster VRC training will be an annual event.  If you missed this year’s training, or would like more information, give the Volunteer Center a call at 715-421-0390.


United Way of Inner Wisconsin to Distribute Emergency Food and Shelter Program Funds

  • The United Way of Inner Wisconsin, for the 27th year, is administering a grant from the Federal Emergency Food & Shelter Program for distribution in Wood County for the period starting in May 2014, according to Tari Jahns, Chief Executive Officer.  Jahns said the grant is in the amount of $10,920.
  • The purpose of the grant is to supplement and extend existing emergency food and shelter programs in high need areas.  Jahns stated that the previous grant was used for rent/ mortgage, shelter and food assistance. 
  • The Phase 32 grant of the Emergency Food & Shelter Program will be distributed to local, voluntary or governmental agencies for provision of needed emergency food and shelter assistance in period starting in May 2014.  A local board is responsible for recommending how the funds will be distributed among Wood County agencies. 
  • Under the terms of the grant, local private voluntary or governmental organizations eligible to be distributing agencies for the grant must be nonprofit, have an accounting system and conduct an annual audit, practice nondiscrimination, have demonstrated the capability to deliver emergency food and shelter programs, and if they are private voluntary organizations they must have a voluntary board of directors. 
  • Qualifying agencies may apply by contacting Stefanie Maxwell at the United Way of Inner Wisconsin Office at 715-421-0390.  Application materials must be completed and submitted by Friday, March 27, 2015.  Late, incomplete or partially completed applications will not be considered. 
  • To be considered for funding, each agency applying must attend a meeting on Tuesday, April 7, 2015 at 9:30AM at the Associated Bank in Pittsville.