Update October - December 2021
A Brief Update from our United Way Office

Happy Holidays!
This is the time of year that provides endless joy and reflection to me.
I cannot tell you the joy that the holidays bring to me when I look at it through the eyes of my grandchildren. The love and laughter as we gather around the table, the squeals of delight as they open gifts, and the look of amazement when they see the lights and ornaments on the tree. (After one of them (Weezie) has either snatched, broken or rearranged the ornaments😊)
It also provides me an opportunity to reflect on my blessings. One of them is my position at the United Way. I treasure the opportunity I have to lead this trusted organization that funds so many amazing agencies that help thousands of people each year in Knox County. I also cherish all of you, our donors, volunteers, and advocates of United Way. We could not accomplish what we do or be as effective if it wasn't for the Knox County communities who support and guide us every year, letting us know what is needed and funding it, so we can make it happen.
Whether you celebrate, Hanukah, Christmas, Kwanza, or another celebration that is special to you, I wish you nothing but the best and a happy, healthy 2022! 

United Way of Knox County Highlights
2021 Campaign

United Way thanks all of the individuals and businesses who made $5 Buck Friday a successful promotion for our 2021 Campaign!
It’s a fun, creative, and interesting way to keep the public engaged from the beginning to the end of the Campaign. It is growing every year and we hope you enjoyed it as much as we did!

$5 Buck Friday
Total Raised $3,844.61

16 weeks of winners!
Week 1 Diana Oswalt, Week 2 Korey Kidwell, Week 3 Nathan Bellman, Week 4 Cathy Barre, Week 5 Renee McDaniel, Week 6 Steve Oster, Week 7 Joy Harris, Week 8 Geri Molner, Week 9 Andrea Rees, Week 10 Deb Curran, Week 11 Robert Mahle. Week 12 Korey Kidwell, Week 13 Debbie Butler, Week 14 Charlene Bland, Week 15 Lou Ann Bouchard, & Week 16 Kathy Brown.
$5 Buck Friday Sponsors include:

The Energy Cooperative, Park National Bank, CES Credit Union, The People's Bank of Gambier, Smithhislers Meats, David Perry, The Mount Vernon Grand Hotel, Southside Diner, Domino's Pizza, Town Center Shell Station, Velvet Ice Cream, Envy Salon, Dean's Jewelry, Down Home Leather, and Ron's Pizza.

Thank you!
Wacky Quacky Duck Race
135 Tickets sold, brining in $1,130

Diana Oswalt was the $100 Winner

Renee McDaniel was the $200 & $500 winner. She also donated her $700 winnings back to the United Way.

Congratulation's and Thank you to all who participated.
United Way of Knox County would like to thank the individuals who donated to our #GivingTuesday campaign and the Knox County Foundation for their $15,000 match! The results are in, and they’re amazing! $29,135.00 was donated by check and online. Adding the $15,000 Knox Community Foundation match gave us an impressive total of $44,135.00! The icing on the cake is that United Way will be able to add a new After-School Program in 2022! Thanks again to everyone who took time out of their day to donate and invest in children’s education in Knox County!
The students in the library had their snack and worked on silent reading and homework. In the gym, kids were doing a STEM activity with OSU-Ext office where they worked together to build mini sleighs and tested them to see if they will hold bouncy balls while sliding down a ramp.
Poverty Simulation
October 21st

United Way held their annual Community Action Poverty Simulation (CAPS) in partnership with the Leadership Knox Class of 2022 at the Gallagher Centre. This simulation also saw the participation of several different groups including Knox Metropolitan Housing Authority, Knox County Board of Developmental Disabilities, Riverside Recovery Services, The Ohio Eastern Star Home, and many individuals from the community. The simulation was able to provide a better understanding of life in poverty for those participating in the first of two 2021 Poverty Simulations.
December 10th

We provide a Community Action Poverty Simulation for the staff of Knox Public Health during their In-Service Day, at The Apostolic Christian Church on Old Delaware Road. The Community Action Poverty Simulation (CAPS) bridges that gap from misconception to understanding. CAPS is an interactive immersion experience. It sensitizes participants to the realities of poverty.
Community Action Poverty Simulation is not a game. It is based on real Community Action clients and their lives. CAPS exists to:

Promote Poverty Awareness
Increase Understanding
Inspire Local Change
Transform Perspectives.

If you would like to hear more about CAPS or schedule a simulation, please call Kyla Brayshaw at 740.397.5721
Fran DeWine Visits Knox County
On Thursday, December 9, 2021, First Lady Fran DeWine visited the Fredericktown Head Start Building and read to a group of pre-school children as part of her Dolly Parton Imaginary Library Initiative. United Way has been the driver of this project for over 10 years, partnering with businesses, agencies, community groups, and individuals. The program to provide 12 age-appropriate books each year to children in Knox County from birth to 5 years of age. Some Knox County Imagination Library partners were there to meet Mrs. DeWine as she thanked them for their dedication to putting books into the hands of Knox County children. If you’d like to partner with United Way and help bring books to children in Knox County call 740.397.5721 today. $25.00 provides an age-appropriate book to a child for 12 months.
January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month
Read the United Against Human Trafficking Impact Report today
The United Way Center to Combat Human Trafficking is working to create effective community-based solutions, galvanize collaboration across sectors, and build public and political will to support, fund, and scale strategies across the world to combat human trafficking. Recently, the Center released United Against Human Trafficking, its first-ever impact report. The report details much of the impressive work being done by the Center, including:
  • Piloting innovative community-based programs in partnership with local United Ways to combat human trafficking at the local level.
  • Educating thousands of local United Way staff members and their community partners -- including law enforcement officials, medical providers, trauma counselors, legal assistants and others – on the complexity and intersectionality of human trafficking.
  • Informing millions about human trafficking through traditional and social media outreach and awareness-raising efforts.
  • Supporting state and federal advocacy efforts that have led to new anti-trafficking laws and substantial increases in congressional funding for anti-trafficking programs
  • Partnering with the United Nations International Labor Organization to determine the global cost of ending human trafficking worldwide
  • Convening movement leaders and experts through events and sponsoring conferences like the first-ever Survivor Alliance World Congress, which brought together more than 200 trafficking survivors from around the world this past July.
Learn about these initiatives and more in the United Against Human Trafficking Impact Report today!
In honor of this occasion, the United Way Center to Combat Human Trafficking has several exciting activities planned throughout the month. Read on to learn about how you can join.
Support survivor leadership by spreading the word on social media.
At United Way, we believe survivors should be leading the movement to end human trafficking. That’s why the Center is working with Rising Worldwide, Survivor Alliance, and Polaris to follow the lead of survivors. Learn about what this means and what you can do to support survivor leadership via a blog post from survivor leader Eseosa Eguamwense, which will be published January 4th on the United Way blog.
You can also help spread the word about this message by sharing the blog and United Way’s social media posts on Wednesday, January 5th
Learn how other local United Ways are combatting human trafficking in their communities.
Join us on January 18th at 2pm ET for a special virtual event – Combatting Trafficking at the Community Level: Lessons from Local United Ways. During this webinar, you’ll learn how local United Ways across the United States have developed comprehensive but unique collective impact responses to combatting human trafficking in their communities.
During the 1.5-hour virtual event you’ll hear about successes, challenges, and learnings from this pilot program, featuring speakers from United Way of Greater Atlanta, United Way of Southern Nevada, Metro United Way, and United Way of Southern Cameron County. 
Connect to Volunteer Opportunities in Knox County
Local volunteerism is the power behind long-lasting change. United Way of Knox County has long prioritized volunteerism. Introduction of a new, dynamic online platform will amplify volunteer engagement and impact in Knox County. Nonprofits and other agencies in the area have already started posting their volunteer opportunities, special events, and engagement activities online in hopes of increasing the variety of ways for individuals to get involved. This web-based system, Volunteer Knox is administrated by United Way and available at www.volunteerknox.com.
Organizations and volunteers will utilize the tool for free under one United Way of Knox County Ohio, Inc. agreement. Contact United Way of Knox County Ohio, Inc. office for more information!