United Way to recognize ‘Community Champions’ at Annual Meeting

2/27/2019

United Way Resource Development Director Lexie Wallace, center, welcomes Community Bank, N.A. as a sponsor of the United Way’s Annual Meeting and Salute to Volunteers. The event recognizes individuals and organizations that have gone above and beyond in helping to create a brighter future for Oswego County. The luncheon will take place on Wednesday, March 13, from noon to 1 p.m. at the American Foundry in Oswego. Tickets are available at http://www.oswegounitedway.org.Fulton, NY – With a small office of only three full-time employees, the United Way of Greater Oswego County relies on countless community volunteers to help meet the mission of ending hunger, building successful youth, and ensuring wellness across the county.

Throughout the year, volunteers offer their support in many ways, whether they contribute to the Annual Campaign through payroll deductions, attend special events such as the Stone Soup Luncheons, or simply share information about the United Way through their own networks. This assistance is vital to United Way operations, which is why the organization recognizes its many supporters through its annual Salute to Volunteers and Leadership Giving Luncheon.

I am humbled by the amount of time and energy our volunteers put into supporting the United Way,” said Lexie Wallace, United Way resource development director. “They act as an extension of our office, whether they are serving as a campaign coordinator at their workplace and teaching their coworkers about the United Way, or if they are hosting a unique fundraiser to support one of our in-kind donation drives. Our work would not be possible without these community champions.

Wallace said the Annual Meeting and volunteer recognition event brings together government officials, partnering nonprofit agencies, industry leaders, and Leadership Givers who are contributors that have given $500 or more and have become members of the United Way’s Admiral Society.

We will also be giving out five awards this year to recognize certain individuals and organizations that have gone above and beyond in supporting our mission,” said Wallace, adding the winners will be revealed via the United Way’s Facebook and Twitter accounts in the days leading up to the luncheon.

Sponsored by Excellus BlueCross BlueShield and Community Bank, N.A., this year’s event will take place on Wednesday, March 13, from noon to 1 p.m. at the American Foundry in Oswego. The United Way’s Annual Meeting is open to the public. Tickets for the event are $15 per person and include a full lunch. Tickets can be purchased online at www.oswegounitedway.org or by emailing rddunitedway@windstream.net. For more information, call the United Way office at 315-593-1900. 

Photo Caption: United Way Resource Development Director Lexie Wallace, center, welcomes Community Bank, N.A. as a sponsor of the United Way’s Annual Meeting and Salute to Volunteers. The event recognizes individuals and organizations that have gone above and beyond in helping to create a brighter future for Oswego County. The luncheon will take place on Wednesday, March 13, from noon to 1 p.m. at the American Foundry in Oswego. Tickets are available at http://www.oswegounitedway.org.

Novelis contributes nearly $100,000 to Annual United Way Campaign

2/21/2019

Novelis employees recently announced the total for this year’s company campaign to support the United Way of Greater Oswego County’s Annual Campaign. The gift of $98,601 is an increase of more than $20,000 over last year’s contribution. Pictured from left, in front, are Judy Mathes, Kevin Shutt, United Way Resource Development Director Lexie Wallace, Novelis Campaign Coordinator Julie Becker, and Courtney Pachoud. Second row from left are Dick Delaney, Kaitlyn White, Ashley O’Bryan, and Marsha Cummins. In back from left are United Way Executive Director Patrick Dewine and Kevin LawlessOswego, NY – Global leader in rolled aluminum products and major local employer Novelis has once again shown its commitment to strengthening the local community by contributing nearly $100,000 to the United Way of Greater Oswego County’s Annual Campaign.

This year’s total gift of $98,601 is an increase of more than $20,000 over last year’s contribution, which Novelis representatives attribute to the dedication and creativity of the company’s United Way campaign coordinator and committee.

Throughout the campaign, employees are encouraged to give back through payroll deductions, participating in fundraisers, and giving time through volunteer opportunities. Novelis then matches 50 percent of the total contributions made to the local United Way, effectively turning each $1 into $1.50.

We are beyond grateful for the continued support of Novelis, and we are blown away by the increase in this year’s workplace campaign,” said United Way Resource Development Director Lexie Wallace. “We know it took a lot of time and effort for employees to make this growth happen, and we could not be more thankful for their support.

Wallace said the 2018-2019 Novelis campaign showed growth in every area, from employee payroll deductions to funds raised through special event fundraisers.

Novelis really thought outside of the box this year, and I think their creativity in fundraising helped push their campaign over the top,” said Wallace.

Some of the Novelis fundraisers included raffling SU basketball tickets, bringing food trucks on-site that were willing to donate a percentage of their sales, and the 30 Day Giveaway, which gave participants a chance to win prizes every day through the month of November after purchasing a $30 ticket. Some of the high quality prizes included an Apple Watch, Yeti Cooler, Kitchen Aid Mixer, and much more.

We’re hoping to use these Novelis events as an example for other groups who are looking to host unique fundraisers,” said Wallace. While she praises the creativity of the special events, Wallace also explains the success of the Novelis campaign would not be possible without a team of supporters bringing awareness to the United Way on-site.

As a company, Novelis stresses giving back to the community,” she said. “We are lucky to have so many individuals who take that message to heart and give their time and energy to supporting our mission of enhancing lives throughout Oswego County.

Specifically, Wallace points to Dick Delaney from Novelis who is both an active United Way board member and chairperson of the Campaign Cabinet. Novelis also recognized Delaney’s dedication by awarding the United Way a $1,000 grant in his name, which becomes $1,500 with the Novelis Neighbor Match.

I was originally inspired to get involved with the United Way of Greater Oswego County because of the value Novelis places on being a community leader,” said Delaney. “Our commitment to continuous improvement in the workplace spills over into ensuring positive improvements in our communities, and I found the mission of the United Way aligned with that desire to enhance the lives of our neighbors.

Delaney first began representing the United Way at Novelis in 2004 when he took on the role of Co-Campaign Coordinator. It became his responsibility to explain the role of the local United Way and to encourage staff participation in giving to support the organization’s mission. During his first campaign, Delaney was able to grow employee participation in his department by 82 percent.

Since then, Delaney has remained active in promoting the United Way on-site and through the community, and says he is proud of Novelis’ continued commitment to supporting the Annual Campaign.

I believe we have a leading campaign that is driven by employees and support from management,” said Delaney. “Our campaign team offers people the time and resources to be creative and successful, and I look forward to supporting many future years of giving back through the United Way of Greater Oswego County.

We are thrilled by the success of this year’s Novelis campaign and hope to keep this positive momentum going,” said Wallace. “This support is what makes it possible to create positive change throughout our county.

To learn more about the work done by the United Way of Greater Oswego County, visit http://www.oswegounitedway.org or call the office at 315-593-1900. 

Photo Caption: Novelis employees recently announced the total for this year’s company campaign to support the United Way of Greater Oswego County’s Annual Campaign. The gift of $98,601 is an increase of more than $20,000 over last year’s contribution. Pictured from left, in front, are Judy Mathes, Kevin Shutt, United Way Resource Development Director Lexie Wallace, Novelis Campaign Coordinator Julie Becker, and Courtney Pachoud. Second row from left are Dick Delaney, Kaitlyn White, Ashley O’Bryan, and Marsha Cummins. In back from left are United Way Executive Director Patrick Dewine and Kevin Lawless.

United Way Diamond Ring Raffle Winner

12/26/2018

The winning ticket for this year’s United Way of Greater Oswego County diamond ring raffle was drawn on Christmas Eve at DuFore Jewelers in Oswego. Pictured from left are Greg DuFore, United Way Resource Development Director Lexie Wallace, raffle winner Bob Dexter, and Mark DuFore. This year’s raffle raised a record total of more than $3,200 to support the United Way’s Annual CampaignOswego, NY – Bob Dexter was recently announced the winner of the United Way of Greater Oswego County’s drawing for a stunning diamond ring.

The 14 karat white gold ring valued at $1,800 was generously donated by DuFore Jewelers in Oswego. The local business has been an active supporter of the United Way for many years, with the Christmas Eve raffle drawing a longstanding tradition many locals look forward to.

United Way Resource Development Director Lexie Wallace said this year’s raffle generated a record high in ticket sales, raising more than $3,200 to support the United Way’s Annual Campaign.

We cannot thank DuFore Jewelers enough for continuing to support the United Way’s mission of ending hunger, building successful youth, and ensuring wellness throughout Oswego County,” said Wallace. “This partnership is truly a shining example of what can be accomplished when we live united.

To learn more about the United Way of Greater Oswego County and the 31 local programs it helps fund, visit www.oswegounitedway.org or www.facebook.com/OswegoUnitedWay

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield supports United Way

12/7/2018

United Way of Greater Oswego County Executive Director Patrick Dewine, right, recently met with with Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Regional President Jim Reed, left, to discuss the United Way’s Ensuring Wellness impact area and the positive effect it has on programs such as Farnham Family Services Prevention and Treatment services, the YMCA Oswego Active Older Adults Program, and many more initiatives across our county. Excellus BlueCross BlueShield recently donated $3,500 to the United Way in support of health and well-being.Fulton, NY – Excellus BlueCross BlueShield recently boosted the United Way of Greater Oswego County’s Annual Campaign by donating $3,500 to support health and wellbeing across the county.

United Way Executive Director Patrick Dewine recently met with Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Regional President Jim Reed to discuss the United Way’s Ensuring Wellness impact area and the positive effect it has on programs such as Farnham Family Services Prevention and Treatment services, and the YMCA Oswego Active Older Adults Program. Last year alone, the United Way’s funded programs assisted more than 13,800 people in accessing the tools needed for overall wellbeing.

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield continues to be among our elite Admiral Society donors,” said Dewine. “Their generous support helps make it possible for us to continue achieving results for our three impact areas of ending hunger, building successful youth, and ensuring wellness throughout our county.

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield is pleased to join other area organizations in supporting the United Way of Greater Oswego County,” said Reed. “As Central New York’s largest nonprofit health plan, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield strives to partner with organizations that work to improve the health and health care of the residents of the communities it serves. We are pleased to work with the United Way of Greater Oswego County in furthering our common goals and ensuring a strong and vibrant community in Oswego County.

To learn more about the 31 programs funded by the United Way of Greater Oswego County, visit www.oswegounitedway.org, or find the organization on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/oswegounitedway/

Lakers Hockey Teams Work to ‘Ice’ Hunger

12/6/2018

Members of the SUNY Oswego community recently presented the United Way of Greater Oswego County with donations of nonperishable food items and toys collected during the Nov. 30 Men’s and Women’s ice hockey games. Pictured above are members from both hockey teams, representatives from the SUNY Oswego SEFA United Way Campaign Committee, United Way staff, and representatives from both the Human Concerns Center and Salvation Army of Oswego County, which were the agencies that shared this year’s collection. The community is invited to help SUNY Oswego continue giving back by visiting the Dec. 9 Holiday Skate with the Lakers in the Marano Campus Center. Oswego, NY – Members of the SUNY Oswego community recently presented the United Way of Greater Oswego County with a donation of nonperishable food items and toys collected during the Men’s and Women’s ice hockey games held Nov. 30.

As part of this annual tradition of giving, spectators were encouraged to bring donations to the Friday games to support the United Way’s impact area of ending hunger across Oswego County. Last year alone, United Way funded agencies provided more than 150,000 meals throughout the county. This year the many boxes of collected food items were shared between the Human Concerns Center and The Salvation Army of Oswego County.

On hand to present the donations were members of both hockey teams and representatives from the SUNY Oswego SEFA United Way Campaign Committee, which hosts multiple fundraisers throughout the year to support the work of the United Way.

We are thankful for everyone who donated food and toys at both hockey games,” said Lexie Wallace, United Way resource development director. “We are also grateful for the year-round support we receive from the SUNY Oswego community. Whether it’s their athletic department holding a food drive or the SEFA Committee putting on a special event, their support truly helps to make a difference in our community.

SUNY Oswego will continue giving back to the community by hosting the Holiday Skate with the Lakers from 1 to 3 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 9. The annual event is held in the Marano Campus Center and features holiday music, a visit from Santa Claus, a hockey jersey raffle, and concessions provided by Auxiliary Services. Admission is $3 per person, and skates can be rented for an additional $3 fee.

Funds raised by the annual Holiday Skate with the Lakers will benefit the United Way of Greater Oswego County. To learn more about the local United Way and the 31 programs it helps fund, visit www.oswegounitedway.org.

For more information about the SUNY Oswego SEFA Campaign, visit https://www.oswego.edu/sefa/

Local Businesses Give Thanks, Give Back

12/3/2018

United Way Resource Development Director Lexie Wallace, left, recently met with Denise Damiano, owner of Damiano’s Eatery in Mexico, to thank her for participating in the inaugural Giving Thanks, Giving Back fundraiser. On Nov. 21, the day before Thanksgiving, four local businesses each donated a percentage of sales to support the United Way of Greater Oswego County. Damiano’s Eatery, Barado’s on the Water, Gibby’s Irish Pub, and both the Fulton and Oswego Fajita Grill locations collectively raised more than $1,100 to support positive change throughout Oswego County.

Fulton, NY – Four local businesses

recently took part in a countywide Giving Thanks, Giving Back initiative by donating a percentage of their sales from Nov. 21 to the United Way of Greater Oswego County.

Barado’s on the Water in Central Square, Damiano’s Eatery in Mexico, Gibby’s Irish Pub in Oswego, and Fajita Grill locations in both Fulton and Oswego collectively raised more than $1,100 dollars to support the United Way’s mission of ending hunger, supporting children and youth, and ensuring wellness across Oswego County.

Lexie Wallace, United Way resource development director, said they were thrilled with the level of participation seen during the inaugural year of Giving Thanks, Giving Back.

This event was a true illustration of what can be accomplished when we live united,” said Wallace. “We are so grateful that these community champions joined us to make a difference in our county.

According to Wallace, the United Way hopes to make Giving Thanks, Giving Back an annual event that community members can look forward to.

We hope to see this initiative grow in the coming years,” she said, adding they plan to continue holding the event on the day before Thanksgiving to make it easy for locals to give back at the start of the holiday season.

The timing of Giving Thanks, Giving Back was intentional,” said Wallace. “We chose the day before Thanksgiving so people who are home visiting family for the holiday have the opportunity to give back to their hometown while supporting local establishments.

All funds raised by Giving Thanks, Giving Back go toward the United Way’s Annual Campaign. The United Way touches the lives of all ages in all corners of Oswego County by providing funding to 31 programs run by 20 different nonprofit agencies. To learn more about the United Way of Greater Oswego County, visit www.oswegounitedway.org or call 315-593-1900.

Oswego Lions Club supports Stone Soup Luncheon

11/2/2018

Oswego Lions Club supports Stone Soup LuncheonOswego, NY – The Oswego Lions Club recently showed its commitment to supporting the local community by contributing $1,000 to help the United Way of Greater Oswego County fight hunger.

The donation went toward the United Way’s annual Stone Soup Luncheon held on Oct. 30 at St. Joseph’s Parish Center. Each year the event brings together area businesses and community members to collect monetary and nonperishable food donations which are used to fill the shelves of local pantries as the holiday season quickly approaches.

We are extremely thankful for the continued support of the Oswego Lions Club,” said Lexie Wallace, United Way resource development director. “Over the years they have given thousands of dollars to food pantries throughout Oswego County, allowing agencies to provide nutritious meals to countless families in need.

Wallace said the sponsorship from the Lions Club, combined with donations collected from event attendees, resulted in hundreds of dollars and boxes of nonperishable food items going to three local pantries: the Human Concerns Center, Catholic Charities of Oswego County, and Salvation Army of Oswego County.

Along with the contribution from the Lions Club, Wallace said the day would not have been possible without help from generous local businesses and teams of dedicated volunteers.

We are grateful for the many local businesses that stepped up to provide soup and sides for the event,” said Wallace. “We were also fortunate to have groups of volunteers from Novelis and the SUNY Oswego Women’s Hockey Team who helped with everything from setup and salad prep to sorting nonperishable food donations and serving soup. I think this event really showcased how much can be accomplished when people come together for a shared cause.

Ending hunger in Oswego County is one of the United Way’s three main target areas. To learn more about the organization and find updates about future events, visit www.oswegounitedway.org.

Cut line for photo: The Oswego Lions Club assisted the United Way of Greater Oswego County in fighting hunger by providing a $1,000 check in support of the recent Stone Soup Luncheon. United Way Resource Development Director Lexie Wallace, pictured at left, recently attended a Lions Club meeting to thank the group for its continued support.

DuFore’s Jewelers supports the United Way Annual Campaign

11/2/2018

DuFore’s Jewelers supports the United Way Annual CampaignOswego, NY – DuFore’s Jewelers is once again serving as a shining example of a community-minded small business by continuing the annual tradition of donating a diamond ring to be raffled in support of the United Way of Greater Oswego County’s Annual Campaign.

This year’s diamond ring is 14 karat white gold with a .5 karat center stone and eight side diamonds. The ring is currently on display at DuFore’s Jewelers, 94 West Second Street in Oswego.

I’m not sure which is more dazzling, this year’s ring or the continued generosity from DuFore’s,” said Lexie Wallace, United Way resource development director. “The unwavering support we receive from local small businesses is incredible. It takes an entire community working together to create positive change, and I believe we have that level of dedication here in Oswego County.

This year’s diamond ring is valued at $1,800, but locals can take a chance on winning the ring for as little as $1 per raffle ticket or $5 for six tickets. All proceeds from ticket sales benefit the United Way’s mission of ending hunger, supporting children and youth, and ensuring wellness throughout Oswego County.

Tickets are available at DuFore’s Jewelers, the United Way office located inside the Community Bank building at 1 South First Street in Fulton, and from United Way staff and board members. The winning ticket will be drawn at noon on Christmas Eve, Dec. 24.

For more information, visit the United Way’s website at www.oswegounitedway.org or call the office at 315-593-1900.

Cut line for photo: United Way of Greater Oswego County Resource Development Director Lexie Wallace displays the $1,800 diamond ring recently donated by Dufore’s Jewelers in Oswego. The ring features a .5 karat center diamond with eight side diamonds and will be given to one lucky winner through a raffle in support of the United Way’s Annual Campaign. Tickets are available now at DuFore’s Jewelers located at 94 West Second Street in Oswego, the United Way office in the Community Bank building at 1 South First Street in Fulton, and from United Way staff and board members. The diamond ring will be on display at DuFore’s Jewelers throughout the holiday season. Pictured from left are Greg DuFore, Wallace, and Mark DuFore.

United Way Invites Community to Stone Soup Luncheon

10/12/2018

Oswego, NY – The United Way of Greater Oswego County will hold the 13th annual Stone Soup Luncheon on Tuesday, Oct. 30, at St. Joseph’s Parish Center, 240 W. First Street in Oswego, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

The Stone Soup Luncheon began as a social event to bring together individuals, agencies, and businesses in an effort to increase awareness around hunger in Oswego County. Over the years it has transformed into a fundraiser and food drive that local agencies rely on.

Lexie Wallace, United Way resource development director, said all profits and nonperishable food donations from the event will be divided between local pantries that provide food for thousands of hungry individuals.

We are asking people to come together to help end hunger,” said Wallace. “We hope this event will shine a light on the very real issue of food insecurity in our county, and will generate resources to support agencies that are providing food to families in need.

Deacon Nick Alvaro has seen the need for increased food access first hand through his work with the parishes of St. Joseph and St. Stephen the King. He said even with local pantries distributing thousands of meals, hunger is still a pressing issue in Oswego County.

Even with the great work done by the Human Concerns Pantry and other local agencies, there is still more need,” said Alvaro.

The menu for United Way’s Stone Soup Luncheon will feature several varieties of soups donated by local restaurants, along with salad, rolls, and dessert from area businesses.

The amount of community support for this event has been unbelievable,” said Wallace. “We truly appreciate how many local businesses have stepped up to make this luncheon possible, and how many volunteers have offered their time to make the day a success.

The United Way will be accepting a donation of $5 per person, and those attending are urged to bring a donation of nonperishable food items. Those unable to attend the event who would still like to make a donation may call the United Way of Greater Oswego County at 315-593-1900. For more information, visit www.oswegounitedway.org.

Photo Caption: United Way of Greater Oswego County will host the 13th annual Stone Soup Luncheon on Oct. 30 at St. Joseph’s Parish Center, 240 W. First Street in Oswego. Pictured above, Deacon Nick Alvaro and United Way Resource Development Director Lexie Wallace recently met to discuss plans for the event. All profits and nonperishable food items donated will be distributed to local food pantries.

Rural Heath Network aids Stuff-A-Bus Campaign

8/22/2018

Rural Heath Network aids Stuff-A-Bus CampaignFulton, NY – The Rural Health Network of Oswego County, a consortium of health care providers and human service providers in Oswego County, recently provided United Way of Greater Oswego County with a donation of $2,500 in support of United Way’s Stuff-A-Bus program.

The Stuff-A-Bus campaign’s efforts to reduce disparities for Oswego County residents is directly in line with the mission of the Rural Health Network (RHN), which is to facilitate partnerships and planning that contribute to a healthy and thriving Oswego County,” said RHN Coordinator Leanna Cleveland.

The Stuff-A-Bus campaign provides relief to families who may struggle to afford school supplies. It builds a sense of community and demonstrates how we can lift each other up and help one another in Oswego County. By providing families with these supplies the RHN hopes to allow families the opportunity to focus on health and wellness rather than become consumed with the worry of how to afford school supplies. We are dedicated to closely examining social determinants of health and finding ways to address them to contribute to a healthy and thriving community.

United Way Executive Director Patrick Dewine said he is grateful for the donation which will aid the Stuff-A-Bus campaign in filling the need for more expensive items.

Our community does a tremendous job in donating so many school supplies but there is always a gap for items such as calculators and backpacks. After sharing that with Leanna the RHN decided to assist us in that area.

Students know when they have different items than their classmates,” said Cleveland. “In considering the mental and emotional health of students it was important to the Rural Health Network to provide all students with the same opportunities across the board. We can provide students with pens, pencils, highlighters, etc., but if they don’t have a backpack to carry them in students are still “othered” in a way that can affect students tremendously.

The work that United Way does for Oswego County is imperative to the health and wellbeing of our community. United Way touches so many lives both directly and indirectly through their initiatives. They are a great community partner of Oswego County Opportunities (OCO) and The Rural Health Network.”

Operating under the auspices of OCO the members of the Rural Health Network work together to take a collaborative approach to addressing major health issues in Oswego County.  For more information on the Rural Health Network of Oswego visit the Rural Health Network (RHN) pages on the OCO website at www.oco.org.

Cut line for photo: Rural Health Network of Oswego County Director Leanna Cleveland presents United Way of Greater Oswego County Executive Director Patrick Dewine with a check for $2,500 in support of United Way’s Stuff-A-Bus campaign. Held annually the Stuff-A-Bus campaign collects school supplies for distribution to economically disadvantaged children throughout Oswego County so that they may have the necessary supplies to successfully begin the school year.