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Community Impact Partners

Advancing The Common Good

United Way of Portage County funds numerous health and human service programs through our partnership with multiple community service agencies.  Program review and grant making is governed by a volunteer review team and approved by United Way’s board of directors.  United Way values accountability, transparency and openness throughout all stages of the decision making process.

 

This Place Needs Great Partnerships

 

Community Impact Grant Recipients

Outpatient Addiction Counseling Our licensed, professional, and caring counselors provide an array of services designed to help people learn how to halt their addiction and begin recovery. Our belief is that treatment works and people recover! Services provided by the Townhall II Outpatient Counseling Department:  Assessment, Individual Counseling, Intensive Outpatient Treatment Groups, Continuing Care Groups, Co-occuring disorder.  Daytime & Evening Programs and Services for Adolescents and Adults.
 
Coleman Adult Day Services meets the needs of older adults and adults with special care needs in the Portage County community. The Adult Day program provides therapeutic activities, culturally diverse stimulating programs and social interaction. The goal is for clients to maintain the highest level of independence while experiencing optimum quality of life.  The new state-of-the art facility opened in 2003 that enables the staff to implement a concurrent programming model that is different than other adult day care and senior centers. Activity development and implementation is designed to address the diverse and changing needs, interests and expectations of individuals, while maximizing participation and choice. 
 
For more than 100 years, Big Brothers Big Sisters has operated under the belief that inherent in every child is the ability to succeed and thrive in life. As the nation’s largest donor and volunteer supported mentoring network, Big Brothers Big Sisters makes meaningful, monitored matches between adult volunteers (“Bigs”) and children (“Littles”), ages 6 through 18, in communities across the country. We develop positive relationships that have a direct and lasting effect on the lives of young people. 
 
Caring Home Help provides case management services for homebound seniors to ensure that they are meeting basic needs and fulfilling a high quality of life.  Program participants receive basic needs, food, shelter and assisted living services.
 
The Amelia DiGirolamo Center of Hope is dedicated to enhancing the nutrition of low-income people in Portage County where local food pantries are not present.  Hot meals are offered at no cost five days a week and typically include 75-100 individuals per day.  Opportunities for socialization, cooking classes and referral services are also offered.
 
The Children’s Advocacy Center of Portage County provides a coordinated response to allegations of child sexual abuse.  So that they are not further traumatized during the investigation, children receive specialized interview and medical services in a safe and child friendly setting.  Information, education, referrals, advocacy, and support continue for them and for their non-offending caregivers throughout investigation and prosecution.  The program coordinates its response with investigators and service professionals to further reduce trauma, to help the child recover, and to improve investigations.  Child abuse prevention and education activities provided by the program increase the community’s involvement in child safety efforts.  The Center is an independent non-profit agency located in donated space in Robinson Memorial Hospital.
 
Consumer Credit Counseling Service provides confidential, professional and personalized financial counseling in Northeast Ohio.  Through this program, consumers can work with a credit counselor to: create and/or develop a household budget, access and understand your personal credit report, eliminate credit debt through a personalized debt management program, attend financial literacy classes in the community, set financial goals for the future and a plan to achieve those goals, complete required bankruptcy credit counseling and education certification.
 
During the course of a lifetime almost everyone will encounter challenges like stress, anxiety, substance abuse or some other form of life adjustment problems.  At Family & Community Services, Inc. our counseling department can help.  We offer individual, family and group counseling by licensed therapists.
 
The Clothing Center’s mission is to provide, free of charge gently used clothing and other personal and household items as available to families and individuals in need, while reducing the waste stream and promoting a positive experience for volunteers. Items are at no cost.
 
The Salvation Army's disaster program consists of several basic services. And while these services address many of the typical needs of a disaster survivor, Salvation Army disaster relief is also flexible. Our services are adapted to the specific needs of individuals and communities and scalable according to the magnitude of the disaster.
 
Community based therapy and Case Management services for families who are experiencing significant mental health and substance use related crises and may be at risk to have the family disrupted. Goal of the program is to maintain the family unit, decrease problematic symptoms of mental illness, address problematic substance use, assist identified clients with managing their needs in a home based setting and decreasing the need for more formal interventions such as child protective services or the juvenile justice system.
 
Catholic Charities’ First Step program addresses the social support needs of expectant women and families and helps to ensure that babies and children have the material items necessary for a healthy and safe start in life. First Step provides quality pro-life pregnancy and family support programming, professional case management, and support services and advocacy for individuals facing an unplanned pregnancy and families with children ages 0-3.
 
Freedom House supports homeless veterans in our community in their efforts to achieve greater self-sufficiency. Including the ability to secure and maintain permanent housing. Support will be provided through intensive case management and access to community resources dedicated to enhancing self sufficiency, and will reflect the individual needs of those served.
 

GSNEO Volunteer Engagement Initiatives

A capacity-building program aimed at increasing and strengthening volunteer leadership; strengthening relationships
with volunteer-connector organizations and nonprofits to recruit and retain skill-based volunteers, and developing strategies to effectively use volunteers to build a stronger membership in Portage County.  Our end goal for the project is to reverse the decline in girl membership in Portage County, as Girl Scouting has been shown to have a significant and positive impact on girls’ educational attainment, leadership development, income/socioeconomic status and self-image.
 
Mobile Meals provides meals and nutritional supplements to clients of all ages and economic circumstances. Clients include children, the elderly, ill, disabled and homebound who are unable to prepare meals, whether for a brief or an extended period.  Mobile Meals delivers hot and frozen meals. Delivery days are Monday through Saturday. In addition to regular meals, Mobile Meals also provide therapeutic meals for clients with special needs, a budget friendly three compartment frozen option and kosher meals for clients who request them for religious reasons. Meals are nutritious, delicious and designed by a professional dietitian.
 
Housing & Emergency Support Services (HESS) has been providing emergency financial assistance to residents of Portage County since 1941. The program’s mission is to insure that all families who are experiencing a crisis which threatens their well-being will receive the services needed to stabilize and resolve the crisis.
 

Junior Achievement (JA) Ravenna

The world's largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their futures and make smart academic and economic choices. JA’s in-class, volunteer delivered programs—in the core content areas of work readiness, entrepreneur ship and financial literacy—ignite the spark in young people to experience and realize the opportunities and realities of work and life in the 21st century. During the 2015-16 school year, it is the goal of Junior Achievement of North Central Ohio to implement a minimum of 115 JA programs educating no fewer than 2,415 K-12 students in Portage County schools.
 
King-Kennedy Community Center was established in 1978. Today, a multi-purpose building serves the community well, from toddlers to senior citizens.  Computer classes are popular with young and old, while students benefit from the after-school tutoring that’s offered.  Families enjoy a variety of outdoor activities provided at the Center.  The Center’s mission in part is to better the Portage County community by volunteering at the King-Kennedy Center and working with area residents to improve overall living conditions.
 
King-Kennedy Community Center was established in 1978. Today, a multi-purpose building serves the community well, from toddlers to senior citizens. Computer classes are popular with young and old, while students benefit from the after-school tutoring that’s offered.  Families enjoy a variety of outdoor activities provided at the Center.  The Center’s mission in part is to better the Portage County community by volunteering at the King-Kennedy Center and working with area residents to improve overall living conditions.
 

Meals in Motion

Provides both congregate and home delivered meals to seniors throughout Portage County. Both options provide hot, nutritious meals from a menu formulated by a registered dietitian. Home delivery provides individual meals and a wellness check to home-bound seniors who may not have family in the area, while congregate meals provide a chance for social interaction in addition to cafeteria style meals for ambulatory seniors.
 
The Medication Assistance Program provides assistance to qualifying persons of any age who are experiencing financial hardship and difficulty with paying for their medications. Our committed staff and volunteers will help clients identify their eligibility and for which medications may be obtained free or at low cost. While this program does tend to be geared more for long-term medication needs (versus, for example, the need to obtain a short-term antibiotic), the staff and volunteers may also be able to point clients towards other resources in the local community.
 
The Medication Assistance Program provides financial aid to help individuals purchase medications. Approved program participants receive $100 per quarter (up to $400/year) to purchase medications through an approved pharmacy. Priority is given to people who have no other form of assistance, such as Medicaid, Medicare, or private insurance. The Kidney Foundation of Ohio also works with pharmaceutical companies who offer direct drug vouchers or discount purchase programs.
 
Miller Community House provides emergency shelter to Portage County adults and children in a housing crisis, while also providing support, advocacy and referrals to encourage self-sufficiency and movement towards permanent housing. Miller Community House provides emergency shelter and supportive services to men, women and children experiencing a housing crisis. Essential to their mission is improving the quality of life for residents by providing a 30-day shelter that includes advocacy, information and referrals to area resources and collaborative agencies.
 
The Salvation Army Food Shelf address hunger in our community.  Salvation Army food pantries provide groceries for families and individuals in need helping to provide healthy and nutritious meals to Portage County families.
 
Place of Peace is a center for Supervised Visitation and Safe Exchange. We assist families impacted by domestic violence by providing a safe place to exchange children for visits or to monitor supervised visitation. The program is designed to help any family experiencing domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, child abuse or those with active Civil Protection Orders, referrals from Domestic Relations Court, Juvenile Court, Child Protective Services, Job and Family Services or attorney’s.
 
The Portage Area Transitional Housing (PATH) program assists homeless families and individuals who are experiencing significant difficulties that hinder their ability to maintain stable housing. PATH offers comprehensive, supportive services and subsidized transitional housing for up to 12 months to support participants in their efforts to increase social and economic strength and to secure permanent, stable housing.
 
Counseling services are therapeutic interventions based on the identified needs of the person served provided by a appropriately licensed professional in which the focus is on treatment of the person’s mental illness or emotional disturbance. When the person served is a child or adolescent, the interaction may also be with the family members and/or parent, guardian and significant others. The overall goal of counseling services is the improved functioning of the child or adolescent. Behavioral health counseling and therapy service shall consist of a series of time-limited, structured sessions that work toward the attainment of mutually defined goals as identified. Counseling services may be provided at the agency or in the natural environment of the person served (home or school), and regardless of the location shall be provided in such a way as to ensure privacy.
 
The mission of Safer Futures is to lessen the scope of domestic violence in Portage County.  Safer Futures provides shelter, support, legal advocacy and referrals for those experiencing domestic violence.  Services are provided 24 hours a day 365 days per year.
 
The Senior Companion Program brings together volunteers ages  55 and better with adults in their community who have difficulty with the simple tasks of day-to-day living. Senior Companions serve one-on-one with the frail elderly and other homebound persons called “clients” by assisting with such tasks as shopping, light chores, interacting with doctors, or just making a friendly visit. Senior Companions may also offer short periods of relief, or respite, to the primary caregiver.
 
The Skeels-Matthews Community Center was established in 1968 and joined F&CS on July 1, 2002. The Center offers various community programs including a senior lunch bunch, computer education classes, and after-school tutoring for youth.  The programs and services offered at “Skeels” are open to all Portage County residents.  The mission of the Skeels-Matthews Community Center is to improve the educational, physical, cultural, and social aspects of the community and surrounding areas.
 
The Skeels-Matthews Community Center was established in 1968 and joined F&CS on July 1, 2002. The Center offers various community programs including a senior lunch bunch, computer education classes, and after-school tutoring for youth.  The programs and services offered at “Skeels” are open to all Portage County residents.  The mission of the Skeels-Matthews Community Center is to improve the educational, physical, cultural, and social aspects of the community and surrounding areas.
 
St. Joseph’s Early Learning Center philosophy is based on the premise that children learn best when they are actively involved in activities which interest them. The Center utilizes The Creative Curriculum® as a framework to develop that premise. A rich and carefully organized environment is the foundation for the curriculum.  Within this environment, child-initiated activities and play are emphasized. Teachers plan and facilitate themes to stimulate the interests of children, foster creativity, and promote individual learning. Sound values underlie our daily interactions with children and families.
 
The Medical Transportation Reimbursement Assistance program provides financial aid to people who need help paying for safe, reliable, and affordable transportation to and from dialysis or transplant appointments. Approved applicants must travel a minimum of 20 miles round-trip to dialysis or transplant appointments with priority is given to patients who travel long distances.
 
UDS enhances the quality of life for people with disabilities and their caregivers by providing the highest quality, client-focusedprograms and services.  SociAbilities provides a variety of social, recreational and therapeutic activities for people age 18 and over.  Participant input, choice making and self direction are encouraged in every activity.
 
 

Community Needs Grant Recipients

The Maplewood Career Center Adult Basic and Literacy Education Program offers basic skills in math, reading, English/language, life skills, computer literacy, Medical Readiness, GED, and transitioning skills to enter post-secondary education/training/job skills all free-of-charge.
 

 
​Parents and caregivers of young children understand that the early years are important, yet many aren’t sure how to encourage early learning or feel they don’t have time to do what it takes to help their child succeed in school. Many communities are concerned about children coming to school unprepared but aren’t coming together to give parents more choices or children more opportunities. Born Learning is designed as a tool for long-lasting community change that supports young children.
 
Youth Leadership Portage County is a leadership program for junior high school students from each high school in Portage County.  The program is designed to introduce leadership skill development, introduce participants to resources in Portage County and helps students develop a plan for their future.  A brief portion of each program day is scheduled for educating students with hands on information regarding post high school educational selection; the application process and guides them to resources.  We encourage YLPC students to then share this helpful information with students at their home schools in Portage County on their morning announcements.