News Release

United Way of 1000 Lakes
350 NW 1st Ave., Suite A
Grand Rapids, MN 55744
t. 218-999-7570
c. 218-259-9535

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Back row left to right: Guy Clairmont, United Way board chair; Abby Kuschel, Itasca Wellness Court; Nancy Roth, Bridges Kinship Mentoring; Kristi Kane, Elder Circle; Ellen Christmas, Grand Rapids Food Shelf; Brandon Town, Boy Scouts; Joni Namyst, YMCA; Cindy Brummer, Home Visitor Program; Sandy Antonovich, Cooperative Solutions; and Mandie Aalto, Advocates for Family Peace.

Front row left to right: Kirsten Siegle and Melanie DeBay, Project READ; Amanda Ysen, Support within Reach; Kimberly Brink Smith, United Way of 1000 Lakes; Linda Reed and Patty Petite, Kootasca; Courtney Johnson, Itasca County 4H Federation; and Ann Saxhaug, United Way board member.

United Way of 1000 Lakes Announces $239,000 in Grants

GRAND RAPIDS - United Way of 1000 Lakes Board of Directors announces investments into 37 health and human service programs through 27 partner agencies. The program allocations represent the second year of a 2-year funding cycle and will be distributed beginning on July 1, 2012 and ending June 30, 2013, United Way's fiscal year.

Allocations totaling more than $239,000 were awarded to programs across the county. This represents more than $213,000 in community donations that will be invested directly into United Way's focus areas: Education, Income and Health, and $26,000 in donor designations to specific agencies.

"We're so thankful for the donors who make all this possible," said Madelen Schuemann, board member and chair of this year's fundraising campaign. "We are committed to getting the most out of every donor investment and helping agencies meet the rising demands they face."

United Way has aimed to target programs addressing basic needs, wellness, thriving children, adult independence and financial stability, adding Project Care and Minnesota Diversified Industries (MDI) to its partner agencies. Project Care was among the 26 agencies requesting allocations and was awarded $7,500. The clinic provides free health outreach services to Grand Rapids area residents who are uninsured and can't afford access to health care.

Other agencies receiving funding include: Advocates for Family Peace, $25,000; Baby Steps Boutique, 5,000; Bigfork Valley Day Stay, $3,000; Boy Scouts Voyageurs Area Council, $1,000; Bridges Kinship Mentoring, $9,700; Campus Life/YFC, $14,000; Cooperative Solutions, $10,000; Elder Circle & R.S.V.P, $13,500; First Call 2-1-1, $15,000; Friendship Haven Adult Day Stay, $3,000; GRACE House, $3,000; Grand Rapids Food Shelf, $10,000; Home Visitor Program, $6,500; Hope House, $4,500; Itasca County 4H Federation, $6,890; Itasca County Family YMCA & Bruce Bauer Center, $31,370; Itasca County Food Shelf Coalition, $10,000; Itasca County Long Term Care Transportation Coalition, $2,000; Itasca Wellness Court, 5,000; Kootasca, $10,000; Project READ, $5,000; and Support within Reach, $12,250.

Community members from various backgrounds and professions make up the United Way's volunteer Community Investment Council. The Council is responsible for reviewing agencies applying for United Way funding by evaluating programs, visiting agencies, interviewing staff and board members, and reviewing financial records to develop an understanding of the agencies community impact. The council then provides the United Way board of directors with their funding recommendations for approval.

United Way's rigorous allocations process ensures that contributions are fulfilling our mission of changing our community by helping people in need through responsible use of donations. United Way's allocation process also helps its partner agencies to leverage additional funding from state, federal and private grants.

The 2012 fundraising campaign kicks off Sept. 15 with a Community Pancake Breakfast in downtown Grand Rapids. The breakfast, from 7 to 10 a.m., will feature civic leaders, businesses and volunteers whipping up delicious hotcakes for the community and competing in United Way's first Pancake Cook-off and Pancake Flip Relay. For more information, call United Way at (218) 999-7570.

About United Way of 1000 Lakes
United Way of 1000 Lakes is improving lives by mobilizing the caring power of community. Our focus is on the basic building blocks for a good life: education, income and health. United Way of 1000 Lakes partners with 27 agencies and invests in more than 37 local programs to create positive change across Itasca County. For more information on how to join the United Way and its partners to build a stronger community, visit or call (218) 999-7570

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