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United Way of Inner Wisconsin News

 

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.