Below are four programs United Way manages serving Darke County, also see the Partner Agency page to learn about the truly amazing work of our 23 non-profit agencies making a huge community impact for our county!
BRIDGE THE GAP
The Bridge the Gap Fund is in its eighth year in existence in Darke County to help address the basic needs of our residents by helping them "bridge the gap" with shelter, utility, and medical assistance in times of short-term struggle including loss of jobs, disabilities, illness, and other issues that may arise, which make it hard for our residents to make ends meet. The Bridge the Gap Fund provides $2,500-$30,000 in any given year based on funding in direct financial assistance, and with your help, we hope to do more. We utiltize the Emergency Food and Shelter Program funds from the Federal Government as well as community donations, and, in the past, part of our reserve. In 2010 we received $12,500 from EFSP grant monies and $2500 from our Runway & Rhythm fundraiser to help Darke County citizens in need. With this aid, we helped 33 households, and 88 individuals with rent and morgage assistance. In 2011, EFSP funds were drastically cut at the Federal level. We received $2,300 for the program as well as $1000 from AEP, and the local community allocation of $5,000 was used as well serving over 10 households in 2012. $3,000 was allocated for this program in 2013. Currently, in 2014, funds are available by calling Community Action Partnership.
DOLLY PARTON IMAGINATION LIBRARY
Dolly Parton Imagination Library started in the Darke County area in January 2010. We have a couple grants that started this project to serve youth in Darke County from birth-age 5, by mailing an age appropriate book selected by Dolly's educational specialists to kids every month until they turn 5. We hope this project will help children learn to read and decrease the amount of literacy issues by the time children are ready for school. Dolly Parton's Foundation provides the books free of charge and the Darke County United Way helps get these books from the Foundation to the children of Darke County by paying for postage which is about $30/child. This postage cost is what Darke County United Way is currently working hard to find grants to fund. We were very fortunate to have a grant in 2009 from the Amie McClurkin Hope Foundation Fund that started this program. We currently have 370 children in the program, 288 have graduated for a total served of 658, and we are searching for more grant money to expand the program. If you would like to donate to this cause please call the United Way office at 937-547-1272. To sign up your child call 547-1272. WIC, Head Start, Anthony Wayne, EUM, Greenville, Tri Village, Versailles, Ansonia, Arcanum, & the Learning Workshop Preschools are served through this program currently. All Darke County preschools and children under age five are encouraged to fill out brochures and be part of this program. Click here for a brochure. Learn more about the Dolly Parton Foundation.
STUFF A BUS
Stuff a Bus is this Friday, August 1st. We are collecting at the JCPenney parking lot in Greenville as well as John's IGA in Versailles with the help of HandsOn West Central Ohio volunteers and Modern Mothers. We will also be at Wal-Mart on Saturday, August 2nd. The Blue Angels 4-H & Boy Scout group helps us sort all supplies. We have collected well over 54,000 items for children thanks to donations given from our counties' residents. Supplies help children in the following school districts: Ansonia, Arcanum, Bradford, Franklin Monroe, Greenville, Mississinawa Valley, Tri Village, Versailles, and Board of Developmental Disabilities.
FAMILYWIZE DISCOUNT DRUG PROGRAM
The Darke County United Way is proud to team up with Familywize to provide drug discount cards to our Darke County residents. We introduced the new cards February 2008 and within the first month of use saved $365 out of $614 in claims, a 59% savings in just one month! Cards are available at our office, the Department of Health, Job & Family Services, Community Action Partnership, Comprehensive Health, Community Unity, and most of the local pharmacies. You may also go to www.familywize.com to download a prescription discount card and check area pharmacies for participation. We have saved Darke County $196,721.20 since February 2008 to date with this program an average savings of close to $30,000/year. 2,073 Darke County residents have benefited from this program.