United Way of the Battle Creek and Kalamazoo Region


Tag: Kalamazoo County Ready 4s

Thank You

by United Way of the Battle Creek and Kalamazoo Region

A community is woven from the threads of stories.

Most people don’t see it.  They see a world spinning upon data, dogma and dispute.  But the truth is, each of us pens our life’s saga, and collectively we author a broader narrative.  That gives us the power to transform our community when we write that story together.

Consider the tale of Aracely.  Her mother, Fanny, describes the preschooler as a candle, Imagefueled by a passion for   learning and new experiences.  Take the fuel away — as was Fanny’s plight in her youth — and the flame would die.  Instead, through the Kalamazoo County Ready 4’s initiative and the Learning Village, Aracely is learning and growing, preparing for kindergarten and for everything else the future offers.

“Her candle will burn long and bright, and that’s all any parent can ask for,” says Fanny.

Then there’s the tale of Charmica.  It’s a story that any of us could experience — job loss, homelessness, isolation.  Into her story stepped the Women’s Co-op of Battle Creek, making it possible to earn her GED, attend college and secure a place to live.  Image

“Today I’m studying for my nursing boars, and I actively participate with the Co-op in helping others,” Charmica says.

Two stories.  Two chronicles that might have ended differently if not for those willing to help rewrite their narratives.

United Way of the Battle Creek and Kalamazoo Region is proud to support these efforts — and grateful for the generosity, compassion and involvement of donors, volunteers and partners like you.

With our 2012 Campaign coming to a close, we celebrate not merely numbers, but lives transformed.

Of the changing story of our regional community.

And of you, the authors of a truly epic tale.


Mike Larson, President and CEO and Chris Sargent, Executive Vice President and COO

Employee Campaign Managers . . . Start Your Engines!

by Kellie Cochrane

This morning, while most of Kalamazoo was hitting the snooze button to enjoy the sound of rain just a little longer, our 2012 Employee Campaign Managers were meeting for breakfast and training at the Senior Services Center.  We had a great turnout and everyone seemed enthusiastic about beginning their workplace campaigns.  This year’s training had a noticeable theme, from pit stops to turbo charged campaign strategies, there was no way to hide our excitement about our sweepstakes prize: a brand new car!

In addition to the sweepstakes excitement, ECMs were able to get inspired by the outstanding presentations by both Sandra Standish, Executive Director of Kalamazoo County Ready 4s, and Dr. Robert Littke, President and CEO of Senior Services Inc.  These two both reminded everyone in the room of the value of United Way of the Battle Creek and Kalamazoo Region’s impact in serving the community.   Which is why we’re so fortunate to have such great ECMs and of course, Campaign Chair Phil Harbert, President of 1st Source Bank.  We know everyone is going to do their best to drive their campaigns to victory!

All of our ECMs were able to break away from the larger group to have smaller sessions with UWBCKR staff about ways to achieve throughout campaign.  We were so impressed with everyone’s questions and obvious passion about this year’s effort.  Thank you so much to the Senior Services Center for hosting the event and for their excellent support throughout it.  And a big thank you to all our ECMs for braving the rain to come and learn how they can help their coworkers Live United in 2012!