Open house to ready students for school
An open house for Project Kids Connect will be held from 4-6 p.m. Friday Aug. 22, from 9 a.m.- 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 23 and from 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 26 at Resurrection Lutheran Church, 610 CR 2, St. Joseph. Event includes free haircuts for kids from Cedar Street Hair Salon, a clothing swap for sizes 4 and up, free backpacks full of school supplies for the first 10 girls and boys, and a free giveaway. Project Homeless Connect helps kids who may not have resources to get ready for school.
Brat sale proceeds to help build Place of Hope wing
Y2K Lions will host a brat sale from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 29 and from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 30 at the St. Joseph Meat Market. Proceeds will be donated to help Ralph and Jan Boeckers to build a memorial wing to those who struggle with overwhelming life problems so they have a safe, secure and inviting place to rebuild, repair and restore their lives at the Place of Hope in memory of their son, who killed his girl friend and then committed suicide. Old glasses, hearing aids and cell phones will also be collected.
Disaster relief grants set for veterans, families
Stearns County veterans, their families and surviving spouses may be eligible for a disaster relief grant as a result of recent flooding and storms. The Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs is offering disaster grants of up to $1,000 for reimbursable expenses to veterans and their families who have not received other state or federal assistance. Veterans and their families should call the Stearns County Veteran Service Office at 320-656-6176 in Waite Park to apply for the grant. Original receipts for expenditures must be dated no earlier than June 11, 2014 and no later than Aug. 31, 2014. The Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs must receive completed applications and receipts with a postmarked date no later than Sept. 30.
Survey sheds light on health concerns in area
What health issues are of concern to Stearns County residents? Results from a 44-question area-wide health survey have been compiled and the results posted online.
The survey was a collaborative effort by five area county Public Health agencies and five healthcare systems located within those counties. Approximately 12,000 random households were asked to complete the survey, with a wide array of questions about residents’ access to health care, nutrition, physical activity, financial stress, tobacco or drug use, driving behaviors, bullying, and other social, physical and mental health-related issues. Responses are giving public health and healthcare professionals a clearer and more accurate picture of the health scene in this region.
“We were able to get some really good information out of this data,” said Renee Frauendienst, the Public Health Division director. “We can now use this information to help our communities and make improvements in the area of health and wellness.”
Stearns County Public Health, in discussing and working with healthcare professionals and other community leaders, will now put together a five-year Health Improvement Plan. This will include the 10 top priorities using the survey results, and strategies and action steps on what should be done to address those issues. A thorough and valid Community Health Assessment is a core function of public health, and is in fact, required by law. The entire survey along with results is posted on the Stearns County website at www.co.stearns.mn.us. Wilder Research out of St. Paul conducted the study on behalf of the organizations.
United Way Volunteer Opportunities
Distribute snacks to children
Boys and Girls Club is looking for volunteers to help count and disburse snacks for each KIDSTOP location. This volunteer position would be located at the administrative office in the Roosevelt Boys and Girls Club. Vendors deliver weekly snack needs. The Snack Distribution Specialist breaks the cases down and is responsible for the correct count disbursement for each KIDSTOP location and marks snack accordingly. There would be some light-lifting required. Volunteers should wear comfortable shoes and clothing. Bring a friend. Refreshments are provided. Contact Bethany Theisen, volunteer coordinator, at 320-257-5115 or email@example.com.
Help children succeed; school supplies sought
The school year is right around the corner and many local children are in need of supplies. Please donate school supplies to the following agencies by Aug. 15 for distribution prior to the start of the school year. Supplies needed include: backpacks, dry erase and washable markers, colored pencils, Fiskars scissors, rulers, erasers, glue, scientific calculators, head phones for computer lab, flash drives, pens and pencils. To donated, contact Catholic Charities at 320-650-1550; Place of Hope at 320-203-7881; or the Salvation Army at 320-252-2229.
Change a child’s life in the community
Big Brothers Big Sisters are looking for mentors. Mentors in the Community Based Program provide friendship, emotional support and hope to young people with whom they are matched. This is a one-on-one volunteer opportunity to provide friendship and guidance to a child in central Minnesota. The volunteer will meet with their Little three to four times a month for 12 months. Contact Rachel Bogenrief, Big Brothers Big Sisters, at 320-258-4535.
No child should sleep on the floor
You can help by donating gently used items to help out a low-income family in need. Items accepted include couches, love seats, lamps, recliners, rockers, kitchen tables and chairs, end tables, night stands, dressers and complete bed sets (no king). Furniture with rips, stains, rust, tears or mold cannot be accepted. Tax receipts and pick-up is available. Contact the Community Furniture Program at 320-656-9004.
Volunteer in the Gift Gallery
Assist with day-to-day operations and sales in the Gift Gallery. proceeds benefit the St. Cloud Hospital Volunteer Auxiliary-funded programs. The Gift Gallery is an excellent place to shop for gifts for occasions with a plentiful selection of plush animals, flowers, plants, balloons, greeting cards, jewelry, seasonal items and much more. Staffed by welcoming and gracious volunteers, you will always find a friendly and helpful voice. Volunteer once a week for four hours at CentraCare Health Plaza or St. Cloud Hospital. Contact the St. Cloud Hospital Volunteer Office at 320-255-5638.
For more information, contact Mary Krippner, United Way volunteer engagement coordinator, at 320-223-7991 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
County warns: no campaign signs in rights-of-way
Stearns County reminds property owners that placement of campaign signs and other unauthorized objects in highway rights of way is prohibited. In addition, campaign signs may not be placed on private property outside of the right-of-way limits without landowner consent. Highway rights-of-way typically include the driving lanes, inside and outside shoulders, ditches and sight corners at intersections. Crews will remove any unlawfully placed signs and impound them at one of the county’s local maintenance garages. County staff will hold the signs at the garage for a period of 10 days to be picked up by owners or staff will discard. Violation of this law is a misdemeanor. Civil penalties also may apply if the placement of such material contributes to a motor vehicle crash and injures a person or damages a motor vehicle that runs off the road.