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Day of Caring projects bring community together- Year after year, making an impact

Written by Bruce Lindner. Posted in Featured, Senior Living

Published on July 06, 2016 with No Comments

Pictured is Task Force team during the 2015 Day of Caring

For 14 years, the United Way has united community members for a day of giving back and celebrating region non-profits.

This year’s annual Day of Caring is Friday, Aug. 12, and projects are now open for teams, co-workers, individuals or families to select and join in on this day of making an impact.

“This annual event celebrates volunteerism,” said Kim Olesker, president and CEO of United Way of Porter County, in a press release. “It’s an incredible teambuilding experience that proves citizens are highly engaged and enjoy making their community a better place to live for them and their neighbors.”

We are always fortunate to have support of our projects each year, particularly our ramp-building initiatives from the group at Task Force Tips. The team will return this year to build a ramp at a needed individual’s home as a path to accessibility.

The team worked at a Hebron resident’s home last year and, at the time, Kim Hale said the event continues to be a great way to connect and make an impact.

“It’s a good hard day of work that takes brains and brawn. We have the right combination: strong backs and weak minds and strong minds and weak backs,” she said during the 2015 Day of Caring. “We are huge United Way supporters and we find every opportunity to help, and it’s good fun. We have people from all over the plant here. We don’t just grab one department … some of us never have the opportunity to work together.”

This year, we are still looking for volunteers for some painting and sprucing up projects at our offices.

We need volunteers to help pull and chop weeds and lay down mulch as well as paint a door, caulking cracks and mailbox posts.

To sign up for our projects or view other organizations’ needs, visit www.nwivolunteer.org.

Companies interested in sponsoring the event should contact Mackenna Schon at Mackenna@unitedwaypc.org.

Have you heard about this herd?

The bison are roaming in Porter County and beyond.

The Indiana Association of United Ways is bringing the Bison-tennial Public Art initiative to communities statewide. The project features life-size fiberglass bison brought to life by local artists as part of the state’s 200th birthday celebration.

Porter County’s herd of eight is one of the largest in the state, according to Anicia Kosky, director of community impact at the United Way of Porter County.

Community partners supporting the project include: Valparaiso Community Schools, Pines Village Retirement Communities, Broken Wagon Bison Farm, Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, Prompt Ambulance, Portage Township Schools, Indiana Dunes Tourism and Task Force Tips.

“It’s been really great to see the community come together around this project,” said Kim Olesker, president and CEO of United Way of Porter County, in a press release. “The project has connected history, art and community to provide an amazing display in Porter County.”

The Porter County traveling bison was decorated by Opportunity Enterprises’ Amazing Artists team and it will make appearances at events throughout the county, including the Hebron 4th of July celebration, Valparaiso Half Marathon and Indiana Bicentennial Torch parade in Portage.

United Way of Porter County is holding a naming contest for the traveling bison. The winner will have the opportunity to ride with the bison in the 2016 Valparaiso Popcorn Festival parade on the United Way of Porter County and Prompt Ambulance float.

To participate, visit www.PorterBison.com.

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About Bruce Lindner

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All opinions, conclusions or recommendations expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Chronicle.  Bruce Lindner has worked in the not-for-profit world for more than 25 years and has been executive director of Porter County Aging and Community Services for five. A native of the Region, he was raised in Portage and he graduated from Valparaiso University. You can call him at 219-464-9736 or e-mail at bhlindner@frontier.com.

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