While the United Way of Portage County 2013 campaign won't officially begin for another six months, United Way board members, committee members, volunteers and staff are busy behind the scenes gearing up for another campaign season.
One of those items keeping these people busy is the campaign kickoff event - the fourth annual Run, Bike, Unite Duathlon on Aug. 24 at Sentry Insurance in Stevens Point.
Michelle Peariso of Adventure 212 in Stevens Point is directing a committee that already has some great additions planned for the event, including a Kids' Duathlon the night before the main event and a noncompetitive category, the Just For Fun Duathlon, which will begin after the last wave of the Full Duathlon.
More information will be coming soon at UnitedWayPoCo.org. Be sure to "Like" United Way of Portage County on Facebook or check the website at www.unitedwaypoco.org to receive updates.
The Andrews Family - Erin and Dr. Ryan Andrews, and their children, Josh, Riley and Eleanor - have been busy with their duties as this year's Campaign Drive Chair "Family." They are the first ever family to serve in this role for United Way of Portage County.
John Hartman of Contemporary Photography in Stevens Point recently photographed them wearing their Live United T-shirts for this year's marketing material, including the United Way thermometers that have become a fixture during the campaign season at a number of sites in Portage County.
The three children also recorded their first radio public service announcement for United Way of Portage County's Learn for Life and the Portage County Reading Roundtable. Listen for them on Muzzy Broadcasting radio stations.
The United Way of Portage County Board and its committees have been working hard to move closer to incorporating a Community Impact model that will help serve United Way and its 34 partner agencies more effectively. This model uses a "nets and ladders" system to determine the way funding is allocated.
The nets are the community basics that help support food, shelter, safety and inclusion needs. United Way of Portage County works to maintain that net, which ensures every person has access to food, shelter and safety; adequate and nutritious food; and, in emergencies, short-term housing and safe shelter.
The ladders include the three building blocks of education, income and health, and using these building blocks, United Way of Portage County looks for opportunities for you to make the greatest difference. We direct your investment to community partners and programs able to create opportunities for stability and independence. We work to connect working families with the resources they can use to build stable, successful, independent lives.
In addition, United Way of Portage County's Volunteer Center and Learn for Life continue to help the community - by matching people willing looking to volunteer with opportunities to do so and by providing a reading program to local third-graders. People can learn more about these programs and United Way of Portage County online at www.unitedwaypoco.org, calling 715-341-6740 or emailing email@example.com.