Up for a Challenge?

For the seventeenth consecutive year, philanthropist Alan Feinstein will provide a unique incentive to help nonprofit hunger-fighting agencies raise funds this spring. Between March 1 and April 30, all food and financial contributions MCUM receives will qualify for the Feinstein Challenge, which divides $1 million proportionately to participating agencies nationwide based on the amount of donations they collect.

In the past, many agencies have been able to boost their donations by two or three times what they would normally receive during this period in the absence of this incentive. Last year, MCUM supporters generously contributed more than $125,000 dollars (including support from Opportunity House) and 6,088 pounds of food during the challenge.CannedGoods

You can be a part of one of the most successful ongoing grassroots efforts to fight hunger by participating in this one-of-a-kind opportunity. By participating in the Feinstein Challenge, your gift will go further in helping MCUM provide high-quality, affordable childcare and emergency services to the Monroe County community. For more information about  organizing a food drive, contact Justin Smith at food@mcum.org or (812) 339-3429 x24.

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Calling on You to Support MCUM

Have you or someone you know recently upgraded to a new cell or smart phone? Wondering what to do with your old one? MCUM can help! We’ll make sure it’s probably disposed of and contributes to programs that benefit vulnerable community members!

MCUM earns money from each phone and has the opportunity to motudo-mobile-phone-with-big-screen-clip-art_423339receive additional funds from phones collected between now and April 30.  For every 20 phones donated during this time, MCUM will be entered in a drawing for $500. The more phones MCUM collects, the better its changes to win!

Help provide high-quality childcare and emergency services to your neighbors in need by dropping off your old phone at MCUM today!

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Back on Track to Self-Sufficiency

Theresa takes pride in being able to provide for herself and her two children through her employment at a local manufacturing company. However, she was recently forced to reduce her work hours due to her son’s chronic respiratory condition. Although she has been able to keep her job through the Family and Medical Leave Act, her monthly expenses now exceed her monthly income.

Despite this hardship, Theresa obtained a money order for her rent and stashed it in the usual spot until she was able to drop it off at the rental office. However, when she went to retrieve it the following day, the money order was gone. She sought assistance from her township trustee but was denied since she lives in subsidized housing.

Unable to recover from the loss, Theresa reached out to MCUM, which agreed to cover the cost of one month’s rent. After receiving valuable advice from a caseworker, she feels better prepared to handle her financial situation going forward. Having avoided costly late fees and possible eviction, Theresa is back on the path toward self-sufficiency.

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MCUM Gets a Makeover

MCUMmcum-large-1noname’s social media followers and newsletter readers have likely noticed the new logo MCUM unveiled last month. The image captures various elements at the heart of the community coming together to make MCUM’s work possible. Despite its new look, Monroe County residents can rest assured MCUM is the same organization they’ve counted on to support their neighbors in need for the last 75 years.

“MCUM has enjoyed longevity in the eyes of the community not duplicated anywhere else,” Executive Director Meri Reinhold said. “Although MCUM still has its original mission, we’ve stepped back and looked at rebranding through a new vision statement and logo; we are using the 75th anniversary as an opportunity to present them to the community.”

Let us know what you think about the new logo by leaving a comment here or on our Facebook page!

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Make Way for the Puffins

With the snow, ice, and sub-zero temperatures Indiana has experienced this winter, there are plenty of reasons to look forward to spring. MCUM is pleased to announce one more – the reopening of the beloved Puffin Classroom! This room, which serves two to two-and-a-half-year olds, has been closed since 2011 due to funding challenges.puffin-md-clip-art_t

Thanks to the dedicated support of individual donors, as well as a generous grant from the Community Foundation, Monroe County parents can once again have access to high-quality, affordable childcare for their young children. To low-income families, this news is as good as the return of flowers and sunshine!

However, our work is not done yet. MCUM is currently collecting three-year pledges to ensure the sustainability of the Puffin room for years to come. Please join us in our commitment to investing in accredited early childhood education for the youngest children we serve. Contact us today to find out how you can contribute to this important goal!

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Through a Parent’s Eyes

Today we share the story of one of MCUM’s childcare parents:

How MCUM Helps My Family
Monroe County United Ministries has been a great blessing to myself and to my son. I am a single mother with a full-time job. When I first started working after my son was born, I was on daycare assistance through the state. When the state cut funding for that program I lost all of my assistance. After paying rent and other bills there is no way I could pay the average rate for daycare, so I don’t know how I would be able to maintain full-time employment without the help of MCUM.
There is another reason I chose to enroll my son in Monroe County United Ministries aside from the financial help that they offer. When I went to tour MCUM, I was so impressed with the clean facility and how organized MCUM’s daily activities were. I really feel like my son is in good hands when I go to work everyday. He always comes home with good stories about what his class or his friends did that day, and I think he will be better prepared for school when he starts kindergarten next fall.
Monroe County United Ministries is a wonderful organization that provides a much needed service to low-income families in our community, so that they can afford to work and/or go to school to improve their lives and the lives of their children.

The Change You Make
Your Impact on the Childcare Program
This parent would never have been able to afford accredited childcare at full price. Because of generous supporters like you, MCUM was able to enroll her children on our sliding-fee scale based on family size and income. Your generosity eases the burden on families in our community and helps them get a leg up. Thank you for your investment in your neighbors’ futures. What you do truly has an impact.

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MCUM Gives Thanks for YOU!

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!TurkeyClipArt


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