Last year, more than 3,500 Washington residents received much-needed help from United Way funded programs including disaster relief, legal counseling, health education classes for preschool through elementary age students, advocacy for seniors, services for people with disabilities and much more.
In total, 38 Heart of Illinois United Way funded programs were utilized by Washington residents last year ... including the Heart of Illinois 2-1-1 information and referral service which has provided more than 450 tornado-related referrals since November 2013.
A highlight on United Way volunteers from Washington ...
Mike and Ginny Everett
Mike and Ginny Everett have been residents of Washington, Illinois for 36 years raising two beautiful daughters in a town they love.
"Ginny and I believe in the importance of neighbor helping neighbor. Working with the Heart of Illinois United Way puts that belief into action. The devastating tornado of November 17, 2013 brought home the need for the United Way's coordinated services on scale we never dreamed would happen in our own hometown." Mike Everett, said.
Mike retired as Business Manager from IBEW Local 34 in 2013, and is currently working on Economic Development projects in the Tri-County area. Ginny recently retired from SAL Child Care Connection after 38 years in the field of early childhood education and is enjoying volunteering in the community and with their church. Mike has served on the United Way Executive Board and Campaign Cabinet for many years.
Al Black is a former board member and Past Chair of the Heart of Illinois United Way's Marketing Committee and has served on the Campaign Cabinet since 2005. He has also co-chaired the Business Services division of the Campaign Cabinet since 2005. For the last seven years, he has supported the annual Day of Caring, often bringing together teams of volunteers from AT&T and encouraging them to work throughout the year on a variety of projects such as wrapping boxes for Neighborhood House’s annual toy drive.
A graduate of Illinois Wesleyan University, Black is President of the Greater Peoria Area Alumni Association for IWU and also volunteers for AT&T's Junior Achievement Job Shadow Initiative. He was past chair of the Peoria Business Academy and served as a mentor at Peoria (Central) High School. He has also coached youth basketball and baseball for the Washington Recreation Association, as well as soccer for the youth programs of the Washington Park District.
"Volunteering is a very humbling experience as I have met many talented people helping those who need a hand-up and are not looking for a hand-out. I also enjoy the sense of accomplishment in helping the United Way agencies and the individuals they support," Black said.
Married to Washington native Beth Black, he and his wife have lived in Washington since 2000. They have four children one grandson who also live in Washington.
Pam Tomka, a volunteer for the Heart of Illinois United Way's allocation process and Success By 6, has lived in Washington for more than 35 years and is the former Director of the Washington District Library.
Volunteering her time as a member of the school board and police commission, Tomka helped develop the leadership program at Washington High School and is a member of the Rotary and Lions Clubs.
"United Way's Success By 6 program brings books and young children together, providing them and opportunity to learn. Education and reading empower the children to move beyond challenges," Tomka said.
Tomka and her husband have two grown sons and six grandchildren. In her spare time, she enjoys gardening, sewing, reading for her book club and volunteering.