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May 24, 2019
Care United events on Tuesday helped restock local pantries and beautify outdoor spaces countywide.

Pantry shelves across Union County are a little fuller today thanks to a meal packing event and pantry drive sponsored by The United Way of Union County.

The Care United event was held at St. John’s Lutheran School and over 37,000 meals were packaged through the Outreach Meal Packing Program. Packages of oatmeal and cheesy rice were distributed to The Salvation Army food pantry network including Plain City, Milford Center, Marysville, and Richwood. Volunteers included groups from Memorial Health, Union County Board of DD, McCarthy and Cox, Midwest Express, John Deere Training Center, Edward Jones, Nationwide, Crazy Richard’s Peanut Butter, St. John’s students and many more.

Additionally, the pantry drive filled 54 boxes that were distributed to eight of United Way’s partner agencies. Non-perishable food items were collected by the Ohio Helpers 4H Club at Walmart. Other items were contributed by Honda Federal Credit Union and other individuals. The collection included 628 food items, 585 personal need items, 41 baby care items, 68 packs of wipes and 1106 diapers.

“It was an awesome day, and we had a great group of hardworking volunteers,” Corinne Bix, Campaign Director for The United Way of Union County, said.

In Richwood, Care United volunteers helped mulch and landscape throughout the village including the North Union Veterans Memorial, Richwood North Union Public Library, and First United Methodist Church. Many of the volunteers were North Union high school students. Painting on the county's third Born Learning Trail was started at the Richwood Park. The Born Learning Trail is a series of 10 interactive signs that offer fun learning activities for young children and their families.

In Marysville, two workplace groups baked a total of 124 dozen cookies. Honda employees utilized the YMCA kitchen for military care packages and Union Rural Electric employees baked at their facility for the American Red Cross blood drives.

Other Care United events included introducing new volunteers to Union County Neighbor to Neighbor. UWUC’s newest partner agency grew out of Care United’s predecessor, Community Care Day. The former one-day event joined volunteers with area service projects (community and individual) countywide. The popularity of the event encouraged a small group of volunteers to answer the question, “What would it be like if Community Care Day was all year long?”

Neighbor to Neighbor volunteers were able to complete 17 individual projects around the county including window washing and light landscaping. For more information about Neighbor to Neighbor contact ucn2nohio@gmail.com or 1-877-354-8262.

“While this was our largest Care United event of the year with close to 200 volunteers, this is not our first nor our last for 2019,” Bix explained, “We want Care United events to be flexible to accommodate different projects and different sizes and groups of volunteers.”

Projects completed earlier this month include mulching at Partners Park by a team from Scotts Miracle-Gro and landscaping at Daily Needs Assistance of Plain City by Tolles students. Upcoming summer projects include refreshing the Born Learning Trails at Mill Valley South and Eljer Park along with some work at UWUC’s partner agency, Discovery Riders Therapeutic Riding Center.

For more information about United Way of Union County, contact corinne.bix@unitedwayofunioncounty.org or 937-644-8381.

The Champion sponsors of this year’s Care United Event were Jerome Village and Memorial Health. Gold sponsors include: Interim HealthCare and Honda of America Manufacturing. Additional sponsors are as follows: Union County Foundation; Liberty National Bank; Union Rural Electric, Parrott Implement; Adecco; Active Healthy Lifestyles; St. John’s Lutheran Church and School; VFW Post 3320; LeCrone Communications; Good as Gold; and G.K.M. Tobin.
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