The Van Wert County Courthouse

Monday, May. 16, 2022

United Way’s Day of Caring held

DAVE MOSIER/independent editor

Dawn Cooper (seated left) and Eric Hurless get pies in the face from, respectively, Van Wert Mayor Don Farmer and County Commissioner Thad Lichtensteiger. (Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent)
Dawn Cooper (seated left) and Eric Hurless get pies in the face from, respectively, Van Wert Mayor Don Farmer and County Commissioner Thad Lichtensteiger. (Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent)

For the past 15 years, the United Way of Van Wert County has kicked off its fundraising campaign with a Day of Caring. The day — actually a weekend — includes both a blood drive conducted by the American Red Cross and hosted by Trinity Friends Church and a food drive that provides items for The Salvation Army Food Pantry.

Both of those events went well. The food drive resulted in 30,006 food items, just over the 30,000-item goal set by Day of Caring Chair Scott Mull’s committee. Several challenges were held in connection with the food drive. In the traditional service club challenge, which has been held for several years, Van Wert Rotary Club defeated Van Wert Service Club 3,800-2,000. Results have not yet been announced for a cross-county rivalry between Lincolnview and Crestview schools, but a challenge between downtown business and city and county government employees was won by the city-county team, thanks mostly to the more than $1,100 raised by county employees.

While the service club challenge nets the winner a travelling trophy, the downtown challenge resulted in downtown business team representatives Dawn Cooper of Rehab Fab and Eric Hurless of Stahl, Stoller, Meyer Insurance (at right) getting pies in the face from, respectively, Van Wert Mayor Don Farmer and County Commissioner Thad Lichtensteiger.

Lichtensteiger, who took a pie in the face last year as part of the Day of Caring challenge, said it was definitely better to give than to receive, when it comes to pie throwing.

The Day of Caring blood drive also went well. Although the drive’s 250-unit goal wasn’t met, Mull said the 208 units collected was a “significant increase” over last year’s blood drive total.

The Day of Caring event heads into its second day today with projects that partner United Way member agencies with local businesses and organizations.

Starting at 8 a.m., Braun Industries employees will participate in their 13th consecutive year of Day of Caring projects, partnering this year with the YWCA.

Federal-Mogul Corporation employees will partner with the YMCA of Van Wert County on a project at Camp Clay, starting at 9 this morning, while the West Ohio Food Bank at Trinity Friends church will distribute food, thanks to a partnership with Eaton Corporation employees. Trucks will be unloaded at 8 a.m., with clients being served, starting at 9 this morning.

Another project was completed at Wee Care Learning Center by employees of Central Insurance Company.

The Day of Caring provides a community-based kick-off for this year’s United Way fundraising campaign. The campaign, which kicked off September 11 with a theme of “Change the Story”, again has a goal of $450,000 — the same one it has had for several years.

While 2013 United Way Campaign Chair Anita Carvajal explained that, with the community still feeling the affects of the 2008 recession, it was felt that the goal should not be increased. However, she did add that more is needed to fill all of the requests from member agencies.

“Our need is much greater than the goal,” she noted.

2013 campaign pacesetters were two small local companies: National Door & Trim and Teem Wholesale. Although the two firms have relatively few employees, they were able to raise more than $6,000 between them for United Way.

The United Way’s 24 member agencies include both the YMCA and YWCA, the Red Cross, Angel Foundation, Big Brothers Big Sisters, the Boy Scouts, Buckeye Youth, the Convoy Food Bank, Convoy Sports Center, Council on Aging, Delphos Senior Citizens Center, Family Health Care of Northwest Ohio, Habitat for Humanity, Help Me Grow, the Lincolnview Latchkey program, Middle Point Recreation Association, Ohio City Youth, The Salvation Army, Van Wert County Family & Children First, Van Wert County Victims Services, Wee Care Learning Center, West Ohio Food Bank, Willshire Youth Activities, and the Wren Ball Park Association.

POSTED: 09/28/13 at 7:36 am. FILED UNDER: News