This Thanksgiving, we are grateful for our friends and supporters. Your generosity has allowed us to provide essential services to Monroe County residents for 74 years. As we look forward to celebrating our 75th anniversary next year, we are grateful to be part of such a caring community committed to providing compassionate assistance to our neighbors in need.
As you contemplate ways to give back when gathered around the table this season, we ask you to consider including MCUM in your holiday giving plans. A gift of any size improves lives by preventing homelessness, feeding hungry families, encouraging self-sufficiency, helping parents stay employed, and preparing children for success in school.
You can fully embrace the joy of the holidays knowing you have made a meaningful impact on the lives of our community’s most vulnerable citizens. By donating to MCUM, you make Monroe County a better place – not only during this season of giving, but throughout the New Year!
Claire, originally from Togo, moved to the United States to study at IU. She and her son had lived in Bloomington for two years when Claire was diagnosed with stage-four breast cancer last winter. Shortly after her diagnosis, Claire’s mother moved in to serve as her caregiver during treatment, which has included surgery, chemotherapy, and an expensive drug regimen.
Claire has an assistantship and receives a stipend from IU. She is paid in ten installments from the end of September through the end of May. Claire also receives weekly child support payments. Although her son is on Hoosier Healthwise insurance, Claire does not qualify for food stamps or other benefits because of her citizenship status.
By following a strict budget, Claire is usually able to cover her family’s basic needs. However, with her additional medical expenses, she fell behind on rent during the months she did not receive her stipend. Fortunately, MCUM was able to step in at a critical time and provide Claire with rent assistance, food, cleaning and hygiene items, and prescription discount cards. This support has given Clair the relief necessary to focus on her recovery so she can continue to further her education and provide for her family.
MCUM hosted its second annual Never Grow Up! Fundraiser on October 26. More than 60 guests took part in an evening of food, such as rainbow chard tacos from The Rail and s’mores cookies from Baked! of Bloomington, and fun, including karaoke and funky photos. Guests were also treated to drinks from Upland Brewery and Brown County Winery. Best of all, the event introduced a group of active community members to MCUM’s childcare and emergency assistance programs!
These enthusiastic individuals will help MCUM have a greater impact on the lives of community members in need by spreading the word about our services to their friends and neighbors. We look forward to their continued involvement as advocates, volunteers, or donors, and are so glad they chose to Never Grow Up!
Thank you to our additional sponsors Bloomington Bagel Company, Bloomington Sandwich Company, Bicycle Garage Inc., and Olsen & Company P.C.!
Since joining MCUM in early September, Development Associate Katie Meier has been actively connecting with congregations and their outreach committees, service clubs, and youth groups. Many of them have long-standing relationships with MCUM that formed when it was one of the few social services providers in Monroe County. However, members from younger generations may not be aware of this history, or familiar with MCUM’s distinct mission among the multitude of charitable organizations in Bloomington today.
“It is important to raise awareness among all congregation members, but especially among the younger generations to whom MCUM will look to help meet community needs in the future,” Katie said.
Though the number varies from year to year, MCUM currently has 16 member congregations that are eligible to nominate a representative to MCUM’s Board of Directors. MCUM also has numerous supporting congregations, whose assistance can take the form of items collected for the food pantry, or gifts specifically designated for the childcare or emergency assistance programs.
A large portion of MCUM’s overall support comes from member and supporting congregations. These institutions also serve as an important connection for recruiting volunteers and spreading the word about MCUM’s services. While the majority of its religious support comes from Christian churches, MCUM also works to reach out to other faith groups, primarily through the Monroe County Religious Leaders, to which it provides monthly meeting space.
In light of MCUM’s 75th anniversary next year, Katie said, “Not only does MCUM exist because of the faith community, it has laid the foundation for so much of what MCUM has been able to provide Monroe County residents. We are excited to continue expanding these partnerships to serve the community in MCUM’s next 75 years.
MCUM will host its second annual Never Grow Up! FUNdraiser from 7 pm to 9 pm on Saturday, October 26, in our childcare facility at 827 W. 14th Ct.!
This fun community event is just three weeks away. Mark your calendars and bring a friend!
PLAY giant Jenga and classic board games, and have your face painted.
CREATE hand turkeys for preschool students and pose for photos with props provided by Opportunity House.
EAT specially designed dishes from The Rail and Baked! of Bloomington, as well as food from Bloomington Bagel Company and Bloomington Sandwich Company.
DRINK complimentary beer and wine from Upland Brewing Co. and Brown County Winery.
WIN great door prizes. Come in costume for additional chances to win!
LEARN about food insecurity and the importance of high-quality, affordable childcare in our community.
SUPPORT Monroe County’s oldest social services organization. Help us celebrate 75 years of providing critical assistance to community members in need!
Tickets are only $12 in advance (or $15 at the door) and can be purchased online here. RSVP on our Facebook page for a chance to win a Dagwood’s gift card! Please note: This is a 21+ event.
A special thanks to our sponsors
MCUM is pleased to announce that the childcare program achieved its highest-ever response rate to the annual National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Family Survey, with more than 80 percent returned! The surveys are distributed to childcare families each spring.
Results of the 2013 survey were particularly important, as they supported MCUM’s application for reaccreditation with NAEYC. To meet reaccreditation criteria, each question must receive favorable responses from at least 75 percent of parents completing the survey. This year, more than 90 percent of applicable survey questions received favorable responses!
Only two relevant questions fell short of the criteria. MCUM will continue to expand opportunities for families to get to know and support one another (71 percent of respondents felt there were sufficient opportunities currently) and to have parent-teacher conversations regarding the language used to teach each child (67 percent of parents felt this already occurred).
NAEYC accreditation is important to MCUM since it sets professional standards for early childhood education, allowing families to find high-quality programs for their children. MCUM is proud that its childcare program has earned this recognition!
MCUM supporters have likely seen the United Way member agency logo on communications from MCUM as well as on its website. But what does that mean exactly? As part of a community of local non-profits who have earned this designation, MCUM has demonstrated that it meets the United Way’s standards of efficiency, governance, and transparency.
In return, the United Way offers resources, materials, and technical support to enhance MCUM’s ability to serve its clients effectively. Through its relationship with the United Way, MCUM can strengthen its fundraising efforts, and focus on its mission of providing high-quality childcare and basic needs assistance to Monroe County residents.
Each fall, the United Way of Monroe County partners with local businesses and organizations to raise funds to help member agencies like MCUM. The 2013-2014 campaign kicks off on September 27. All campaign donations stay local to ensure people in our community can have a good education, build their earnings, and afford the essentials for their families.
This year, the United Way also has special matching grant opportunities. Thanks to your support, the people we serve have the opportunity to build a better future. Please give generously today. For more information, visit www.monroeunitedway.org.