JACKSON TWP.  United Way of Greater Stark County will provide financial help this year to 68 programs that meet its impact areas of health, education and financial stability.

The agency hosted its annual celebration Thursday morning at Kent State University at Stark and announced it had raised $6,178,523 during its annual campaign that closes Saturday.

United Way released its annual funding allocations earlier this week.

Among those receiving funds are Access Health Stark County Community Health Workers expansion project, $97,274; Canton City Health Department and Stark County THRIVE Pathways Community HUB, $75,491; Coleman Professional Services, $133,629 for multiple programs; and Crisis Intervention and Recovery Center, $164,042 for multiple projects.

Not all applicants received financing, based on alignment with United Way of Greater Stark County's Bold Goals criteria.

"During this year, the Impact Councils, which are the three groups that allocate the funding — Health, Education and Financial Stability — reviewed the programs," said Kevin Smith, who served as 2017 campaign chairman with his wife, Linda.

"At the end of the first year, all those programs are measured to make sure they are meeting the markers and indicators that councils expect. Most likely, the programs not receiving allocations this year won't next year either, but all those who did not receive funding this year have been invited to apply again in two years."

Those who received funding risk losing it the following year if they do not meet the required criteria.

"It is a two-year funding cycle," said Maria Heege, president and CEO of United Way of Greater Stark County. "They will be submitting reports and outcome results and numbers during the course of this year, and, as the volunteers get ready to review year two, they will be reviewing what the agencies were able to accomplish this year, and adjust year two."

Heege stressed all who sought assistance are "good agencies."

"The agencies that received funding aligned more with the Bold Goals," Heege said. "We met personally with the agencies that were not funded and talked about the Bold Goals."

Awards

Receiving Gold Key awards Thursday morning were Robert Fernandez of the Stark County Family Court, and Rob Pierson of the Stark County Department of Job and Family Services.

Nominated by Bill Cook, chairman of the United Way's board of directors, Fernandez served the court as in intake officer and intake department supervisor until 2005. He now manages the court's Reclaim Ohio Program, a state funded initiative that supports 14 community-based intervention programs for Stark County delinquent youth. He also oversees other grants that the court receives and assists in planning and implementing new projects that the court and its community partners initiate.

Pierson was nominated by Baylee Diedrich, events assistant at the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Pierson has worked for Job and Family Services for 30 years and currently serves as the deputy director of child support.

This year's DeHoff Emerging Philanthropist Award went to Cyrus Harper. He was nominated by Alexandra Coon, director of the Massillon Museum.

"Cyrus was born and raised in Massillon and returns often to inspire youth, maintain involvement with the Boys and Girls Club, connect to schools through the Massillon Museum and city administration, and retain his positive influence on our community," said Coon, noting that his social media platforms all are based on integrity, positive outlooks and feature a diverse array of individuals from all walks of life and socioeconomic backgrounds.

Campaign awards were given to the Edward C. Levy Co., Fulfab, National Lime and Stone Co., Community Legal Aid Services, Masonic Learning Center for Children and the YWCA, Cornerstone Award; Rice's Landscaping and Brown Local Schools, Pioneer Award; and Black McCuskey Souers & Arbaugh law firm, Employers Health Purchasing Corp., Fred Olivieri Construction Co., Gervasi Vineyards, Hendrickson Trailer Commercial Vehicle Systems, Marathon Petroleum Corp LP Ohio Refining Division, Sterilite Corp., PNC Bank, UPS, Alliance for Children and Families, Goodwill Industries of Greater Cleveland and East Central Ohio, Alliance City Schools, Canton city School District, Canton Local Schools and YWCA Canton, Trailblazer Award.

Lucia Pileggi was named chairman of the 2018 campaign.

 

Reach Denise at 330-580-8321 or denise.sautters@cantonrep.com; On Twitter: dsauttersREP