Published: Friday, 24 February 2017 07:46
Written by Martha Trese
By Marty Trese, KnoxPages.com Editor
GAMBIER - United Way of Knox County held its annual meeting in Peirce Hall at Kenyon College midday Thursday. Top contributors were honored for their donations to the 2016 million dollar campaign. 2016 campaign chair Julie Miller, the Knox County Health Comissioner, was among those who spoke to thank the companies and individuals who made the $1,036,000 campaign successful.
Campaign highlights included a 2 year lease giveaway from a local auto dealer, poverty simuation, and the Women United fundraiser,
Miller said, "This campaign for me was a campaign to place access to overall health resources in reach for residents of our community. The future is bright for us to become one of the healthiest communities in the state and even in the nation." And Miller said the generosity of our community is amazing. United Way of Knox County's vision is: is to be a connected, inclusive, responsive, community-focused innovative rural environment where residents work together and support one another.
If you donated to United way you helped 440 preschool students receive a toothbrush, toothpaste, a two-minute timer and a coloring packet that includes a 30-day calendar, so they could track how many times they brush their teeth. Many of the students that received materials through the Shining Smile Program had never brushed their teeth before this experience. Donors also made it possible for increased mental health services to children in Danville, East Knox schools and at the Knox County Learning Center. And 43,000 free books were mailed to young children as part of the Imagination Library.
25 programs and 18 unique partner agencies receiving investment dollars from United Way in 2016 included:
- American Red Cross of Knox County
- Behavioral Healthcare Partners of Central Ohio
- The Freedom Center of Knox County
- Girl Scouts of Ohio's heartland council, Inc.
- Interchurch social Services of Knox County
- Kno-Ho-Co Ashland Community ACiton Commission
- Knox County 4-H Planning
- Knox County Head Start, Inc.
- Muskingum Valley Council, Boy Scouts of America
- New Directions: Domestic Abuse Shelter of Knox County
- Ohio State Legal Services Association-Southeastern Legal Aid
- Pathways of Central Ohio
- Public Health Partnership of Knox County
- The Salvation Army of Mount Vernon
- Science Playspace Initiaitive (SPI)
- The Winter Sanctuary
- The Visiting Nurse Association of Mid-Ohio
- YMCA of Mount Vernon
The top 20 corporate contributors:
#1 Ariel Corporation = $475,000
#2 Kokosing Construction Co. = $124,554
#3 First-Knox National Bank = $75,884
#4 Kenyon College = $44,382
#5 Jeld-Wen Windows & Doors = $39,009
#6 Nationwide Insurance = $36,191
#7 Knox Community Hospital = $15,744
#8 Knox County Employees = $15,392
#9 Ohio Cumberland Gas Company = $12,000
#10 Brenneman Lumber & Kiln Drying, Inc. = $11,060
#11 Elizabeth Ring Mather & William Gwinn Mather Fund = $10,000
#12 Central Ohio Technical College = $8,525
#13 Siemens Energy = $7,995
#14 F.T. Precision = $7,252
#15 Mount Vernon City Schools Employees = $6,699
#16 State of Ohio Combined Charitable Campaign
Mount Vernon Developmental Center Employees = $5,633
#17 Knox County Farm Bureau = $5,225
#18 Colonial City Moose Lodge 2555 = $4,455
#19 Beatty B. Williams Trust = $3,535
#20 Knox County Head Start, Inc. Employees = $3,428
The United Way is run by a staff headed by Executive Director Kelly Brenneman, an Executive Committee, a Board of Directors, community investment committee, and resource development committee.
Organizations interested in applying for 2018 funding can submit an application online by March 15th at 4 p.m. Their website is uwayknox.org.
Published: Wednesday, 22 February 2017 12:45
Written by Martha Trese
LA JOLLA, CA – Matt Starr, of I-CONN Video Production, has won the prestigious Distinction Humanitarian Award from The Accolade Global Film Competition and The IndieFEST Film Awards. The awards were given for Starr’s heart-felt, inspiring documentary, The JJ Project, which tells the story of how local Mount Vernon boy JJ House chased his dream to direct a musical while inspiring a community to help him get there. The JJ Project explores themes of following your dreams, overcoming disabilities, showing how the arts can enlighten communities, and creating a sustainable future for the arts through mentoring youngsters on the business side of the theatre. Leading actors for the film include JJ House, Bruce Jacklin, Mary Harris, Thor Fox, Luna Moreland, Janis Stone, and many other members of MTVarts.
“As we share this film with audiences around the country, the first thing that people say to me is ‘Wow, what a wonderful community you have,’” said Matt Starr, producer and director of The JJ Project. “What continues to amaze me is the continued inspiration that this story provides. When you watch it with a new audience, there is something new that jumps out at you.”
The goal of the Humanitarian Award is to honor filmmakers who are bringing awareness to issues of Ecological, Political, Social Justice, Health and Wellness, Animals, Wildlife, Conservation and Spiritual importance. The winners are handpicked by the judges and staff from hundreds of entries throughout the year.
In winning a Humanitarian award from Accolade, Starr and The JJ Project join the ranks of other high-profile winners of this important award such as Emmy Award winner Alfre Woodard and her documentary Soft Vengeance, Emmy winner Vic Sarin for The Boy From Geita, Letters from Generation Rx, narrated by Academy Award winner Tilda Swinton and many more.
“It takes great talent to tackle the world’s most pressing issues with film and do a great job,” said Rick Prickett, chair of The Accolade Global Film Competition and The IndieFEST Film Awards. “It takes an even greater heart.”
“We are still awaiting decisions from other film festivals around the world to see where we go from here,” Starr added. “Hopefully, we are close to distribution, which will have the impact for which we hoped. This is an important and urgent story.”
For more information about the film’s festival status and updates, visit thejjproject.org or follow along on Facebook @mtvarts.thejjproject.
From Left to Right: Bruce Jacklin, Matt Starr, and JJ House - photo submitted