News

Seasoned community advocate and Byron resident joins United Way as Ogle County Director

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(Rockford, Ill. - 08/03/2015) – United Way of Rock River Valley is pleased to announce the hiring of Alan Jones as Relationship Manager/Ogle County Director. In his new role, Jones joins United Way's relationship management team and will oversee resource development and program operations for Ogle County as well as manage corporate accounts in Winnebago County. Jones assumed his responsibilities today.

More than 425 businesses and local labor partners in Ogle and Winnebago counties align their annual philanthropic giving with United Way, pledging nearly $4.8 million during the last campaign year. In addition to managing corporate accounts, Jones will represent United Way at ongoing events including civic and human services meetings and provide oversight of Ogle County operations, including United Way 2-1-1 and grant investments.

"Alan brings a deep-rooted knowledge in community advocacy and nonprofit marketing that will assist us in our impact work. We are thrilled to welcome him to the United Way team. His considerable expertise of the region, particularly in Ogle County, will be a great asset to our organization," said Linda Sandquist, Vice President.

Jones brings more than 25 years of marketing, communication and community relations experience, including 15 years as a television anchor and producer for 23WIFR. More recently as the marketing and fund development director for Lifescape Community Services, Jones led fundraising efforts for the senior centered nonprofit organization, which included maintaining the donor management system and developing the creation of appeal campaigns. He holds certification in Centers of Disease Control Crisis and Emergency Risk Communication Regional Training.

A longtime resident of Byron, Jones served on the board of Habitat for Humanity of Ogle County and volunteered with several organizations including Byron Community Unit School District #226, ByronFest, and Byron Police Department. He is currently a member of the Bryon Rotary Club.

 


United Way of Rock River Valley

United Way of Rock River Valley advances the common good in Winnebago and Ogle counties, creating opportunities for a better life by focusing on education, income, and health. United Way recruits people and organizations that bring the passion, expertise and resources needed to get things done. LIVE UNITED® is a call to action for everyone to become a part of the change.

Rockford Police and United Way announce community outreach initiative, “Strong Neighborhoods Days”

Strong Neighborhoods Days

(Rockford, Ill. - 07/20/2015) – The Rockford Police Department and United Way of Rock River Valley will launch the first in a new series of community outreach events this week. "Strong Neighborhoods Days" block parties are a partnership of the Rockford Police Department and United Way of Rock River Valley. The block parties evolved from the success of the former "Cops on the Block" events that have taken place in previous summers.

"Strong Neighborhoods Days" block parties provide an informal opportunity for neighbors to meet and engage with district police officers. Activities include giveaways, bomb robot demonstrations, and tours of the Rockford Police mobile command center and select Strong Neighborhoods Houses. United Way will provide food, catered by Zina Horton from local favorite, Zammuto's, and will also be distributing free t-shirts to attendees.

"Community engagement is a critical element to healthy and vibrant neighborhoods," said Assistant Deputy Chief Michael Dalke. "Strong Neighborhoods Days is an opportunity to develop new and strengthen existing relationships with residents."

The Rockford Police Department and United Way have been working closely together with the SwedishAmerican Health Foundation in the establishment of the Strong Neighborhoods House on Revell Avenue, and with Zion Development Corporation to identify houses on 8th Avenue and Irving Avenue that will be developed as Strong Neighborhoods Houses. These houses will serve as a space where officers can help facilitate problem solving and build a safer and healthier neighborhood.

"United Way is working with community partners to build safe and healthy neighborhoods. Strong Neighborhoods Days is an excellent way for police officers and neighborhood residents to get to know each other," said Paul Logli, President and CEO of United Way of Rock River Valley.

The event will occur once a week on Thursdays for the next five weeks from 12:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. at the following locations:

  • July 23, 2015 – Revell Strong Neighborhoods House (1233 Revell Ave.)
  • July 30, 2015 – Irving Strong Neighborhoods House (312 Irving Ave.)
  • August 6, 2015 – 8th Ave Strong Neighborhoods House (908 8th Ave.)
  • August 13, 2015 – Morgan and Ferguson (1000 Ferguson. By St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church)
  • August 20, 2015 – Blackhawk Courts (338 15th Ave.)

Police officers and United Way volunteers will go door-to-door throughout the neighborhood to make introductions, distribute event information and invite residents to attend leading up to each event.

For more information, please contact Ashley Burks, community impact manager of United Way of Rock River Valley, at 815.986.4805 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

 


United Way of Rock River Valley

United Way of Rock River Valley advances the common good in Winnebago and Ogle counties, creating opportunities for a better life by focusing on education, income, and health. United Way recruits people and organizations that bring the passion, expertise and resources needed to get things done. LIVE UNITED® is a call to action for everyone to become a part of the change.

Increasing access to health services for Midtown neighborhood residents

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(Rockford, Ill. - 07/07/2015) – Residents of Midtown District will now have regular access to free health screenings conveniently located in their neighborhood. United Way of Rock River Valley, in collaboration with Patriot's Gateway Community Center and trained medical professionals, will provide access to glucose, cholesterol and blood pressure screenings.

Free Health Screenings

Wed., July 8, 2015
3:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Patriot's Gateway Community Center (615 S. 5th Street, Rockford, Ill.)

The free health screening is a direct response to needs discovered through United Way's Strong Neighborhoods initiative, which is improving the quality of life for children and families in two of the region's most challenged neighborhoods. Residents expressed a lack of knowledge in addressing family health issues and acknowledged obstacles with time and distance make it difficult to access health services.

Download Free Health Screenings flyer.


United Way of Rock River Valley

United Way of Rock River Valley advances the common good in Winnebago and Ogle counties, creating opportunities for a better life by focusing on education, income, and health. United Way recruits people and organizations that bring the passion, expertise and resources needed to get things done. LIVE UNITED® is a call to action for everyone to become a part of the change.

Now accepting nominations for 2015 Frank Ware Award of Excellence

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(Rockford, Ill. - 07/16/2015) – United Way of Rock River Valley is now accepting nominations for the 2015 Frank Ware Award of Excellence, awarded to any individual who exemplifies a high-level of excellence in service to others, human service advocacy, and an unwavering commitment to our community. This award honors the spirit of Frank Ware, beloved former President/CEO of Janet Wattles Center, who spent over 30 years advocating and fighting for quality care on behalf of the most marginalized members in this community. His high standards and expectations resulted in better care for those in need.

One award recipient will be determined by a committee of community leaders and announced during United Way's Day of Caring / Campaign Kickoff Luncheon event on September 17, 2015. Nominations are due by 5:00 p.m. on July 31. Visit www.wevolunteer.org to submit a nomination.

For more information on United Way's Frank Ware Award of Excellence, contact Tonya Thayer Meyer by calling 815-968-5400.

 


United Way of Rock River Valley

United Way of Rock River Valley advances the common good in Winnebago and Ogle counties, creating opportunities for a better life by focusing on education, income, and health. United Way recruits people and organizations that bring the passion, expertise and resources needed to get things done. LIVE UNITED® is a call to action for everyone to become a part of the change.

United Ways of Illinois call on state officials to end budget impasse

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(Rockford, Ill. - 06/30/2015) – United Way of Illinois sent an open letter this morning to the Governor and leaders of the General Assembly asking them to act together immediately to pass a state budget. United Way is very aware of the uncertainty and distress that these delays and potential cuts are causing across the human services sector and with our partner agencies in particular. We will continue advocating for a responsible budget that recognizes the value and importance of human services.

Below is a transcript of the open letter.

 

June 30, 2015

An Open Letter to the Leadership of the General Assembly and the Governor

As the largest collective private funder of human services in the state, United Way of Illinois has serious concerns about the ongoing budget stalemate and what it means for the people of Illinois.

Non-profit organizations are the backbone for the delivery of state services to our most at-risk and vulnerable citizens. Hundreds of our partner agencies, who have worked for decades on the state's behalf to serve the people of Illinois, depend on elected leaders to pass a timely and fiscally responsible budget — a budget that provides funding for programs that ensure basic quality of life to our disadvantaged neighbors and that advance the collective economic strength of the region.

The 52 local United Ways that make up United Way of Illinois continue to provide support and funding to our partners, but private philanthropy cannot possibly fill the hole left in the absence of state funding. Nor can human service providers continue to do their critical work without a line of sight to what state funding they can operate with this coming fiscal year.

With the state's new fiscal year only a day away with no approved budget, nonprofit organizations are wrestling with untenable uncertainty — planning for lay-offs, reducing client numbers and shuttering programs. United Way research shows that in large regions of our state, more than 75% of our partner agencies depend significantly on state resources to provide services. The nonprofit sector in Illinois has repeatedly answered the call to do more with less, and has delivered efficient, quality services. It relies on the state to pass a clear and timely plan for this fiscal year. Illinois needs to turn this comer and set a new path.

We ask that the General Assembly and the Governor work side by side to serve the citizens of Illinois by promptly passing a state budget.

Again, United Way of Illinois stands at the ready to partner with state leaders to make the most of a responsible state budget that serves the needs of all Illinois citizens.

Sincerely,
Mark R. Burton

Chair, United Way of Illinois
Chair, United Way of Quad Cities

 


United Way of Rock River Valley

United Way of Rock River Valley advances the common good in Winnebago and Ogle counties, creating opportunities for a better life by focusing on education, income, and health. United Way recruits people and organizations that bring the passion, expertise and resources needed to get things done. LIVE UNITED® is a call to action for everyone to become a part of the change.