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May 30, 2017

It's a Process

by Sara O'Hara

Another year of a successful campaign and community investment process has come to a close. Without the support from our community of individuals, organizations, and businesses in Sheboygan County, none of our great work would be possible. Within the United Way, lots of credit goes to the volunteer members of the Community Action Team and Board of Directors that work diligently to assure donor dollars are invested wisely and with purpose.

And it is a process.

The Community Action Team (CAT), made up of dedicated volunteer members from across Sheboygan County, scored each program application on criteria such as outcome measurement, the logic model program plan and collaboration with other agencies.  This year, the CAT added a specific criterion for rating applications based on their primary prevention service models.  We place a premium on primary prevention because this approach takes action before a problem arises in order to avoid it entirely, rather than treating or alleviating its
consequences. Research shows that primary prevention gives the best return on investment of any community service approach.  One dollar invested in primary prevention can return up to $9.00 or more in savings on remedial programs and services.

Primary prevention programs are not a silver bullet.  We will always need treatment programs in the community to help solve critical problems.  But fixing a problem after it becomes a crisis is much more expensive than preventing it from happening – “a stitch in time saves nine”, as the old adage goes.  So we invest community charitable funds in prevention programs, to save all of us money in the long run and assure Sheboygan County is, as our vison statement reads: “a community where all individuals and families can achieve their human potential through education, income stability, and healthy lives”.

Several United Way Partner Agencies improved the applications they submitted, which means more accountability to the community and better overall performance – more examples of a greater return on investment.  We thank and congratulate the Partner Agencies for their diligence and creativity in working to make our community a better place to live, work, and thrive. Here is the list of our nineteen Partner Agencies and the programs in which United Way has invested for the 2017-2018 fiscal year:

Alzheimer's Association Southeastern WI:

  • Awareness, Education & Support

American Red Cross Northeast Wisconsin Chapter:

  • Disaster Services

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Sheboygan County:

  • Community Based Mentoring
  • School Based Mentoring

Bay-Lakes Council, Boy Scouts of America:

  • Comprehensive Youth Development

Boys & Girls Clubs of Sheboygan County:

  • Healthy Lifestyles
  • Good Character
  • Academic Excellence

Catholic Charities:

  • Counseling/Behavioral Health Services
  • Outreach/Case Management Services
  • Refugee Resettlement Services

Family Connections:

  • Child Care Resource Development
  • Connections

Family Resource Center of Sheboygan County:

  • Parents as Teachers
  • Literacy Council Adult One to One

Family Service Association:

  • Financial Literacy
  • Budget & Credit Counseling

Girl Scouts of Manitou Council:

  • Youth Drug & Alcohol Prevention

Lakeshore CAP:

  • Rental Assistance
  • Community Response

Lutheran Social Services:

  • Runaway and Youth Services

Fresh Meals on Wheels of Sheboygan County:

  • Meals on Wheels

Mental Health America in Sheboygan County:

  • Education
  • Community Service/Advocacy
  • Individual Assistance Program

Nourish:

  • Farm to School

Rainbow Kids:

  • Spectrum
  • Prism

Safe Harbor of Sheboygan County:

  • Prevention & Education
  • Shelter & Helpline

Sheboygan County Interfaith Organization:

  • Bridgeway & Beyond TLP
  • Farmers Market
  • Supervised Visitation

The Salvation Army:

  • Child Care Center
  • Comprehensive Services
  • The Emergency Lodge
  • The Red Shield Free Clinic

We especially want to thank you – the donors to the United Way campaign.  Because of your generosity, United Way is able to invest more money into prevention-based service models and other community programs.  In fact, this year’s campaign resulted in the most we have ever invested through United Way giving.

We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give – Winston Churchill.

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