A look at ‘Gives’ participants

Joseph Pratt

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Dozens upon dozens of non-profit organizations work around the clock, and around the calendar, to make the area a better place. From assisting homeless people to homeless pets, from education supplements to artistic opportunities; the area is bountiful with dedicated locals committed to the betterment of our home.

It is that time of year again for many of these organizations to reap the benefits of matched donations, thanks to the staff at the Scioto Foundation.

The Scioto Foundation offers many opportunities for community development, from scholarships to watching over endowment funds. They will be matching incoming donations to their registered non-profit organization accounts this year with the annual Scioto Gives event.

The Scioto Gives event is an annual fund raising drive that is held through the Scioto Foundation. The Foundation encourages and entices donations by offering a match to funds. They recently received a $10,000 donation that has raised their match price to now offer $40,000 in matching funds.

Last year’s event awarded $80,258.95 in funds to participating groups.

26 organizations will be partaking in the Scioto Gives event this year on October 22.

The Portsmouth Beautification Society will be competing for funds in order to improve one of the areas most visited parks.

The society was established in 1988 by Julian Mohr. The purpose of the organization is to improve Portsmouth living environments by beautifying Tracy Park. Since the time of inception, the group claims Tracy Park has been witness to great improvements, with the establishment of the flower gardens, planting and maintaining of the trees, adding sidewalks, and construction of the stage.

Membership consists of any interested citizen, organization, and civic or commercial group that is interested in assisting their purpose. If you are interested in joining the organization, contact Cecilia Morris at 740-354-2887.

Portsmouth Connex is working toward the development of bicycling, bicycling infrastructure such as bike racks, and activity routes throughout Portsmouth and surrounding communities. The group will be accepting donations during the Scioto Gives event.

The group’s mission is to inspire activities of play, exercise, and social connections to promote health and wellness, which aligns with the health and economic efforts of many in the community.

Connex works to promote tourism, activity, and access; improve economic viability and attract-ability; build family entertainment opportunities; provide safe transportation alternatives; educate bike safety; and to create biking infrastructure.

Barb Bradbury, Connex board president, believes Scioto Gives contributions will assist in providing a platform to transform Portsmouth into a bicycle-friendly, health conscious and forward thinking community.

“Portsmouth Connex will benefit our community today and in the future. Any contribution toward Connex is an investment in health, family, and entertainment,” Bradbury. “It doesn’t get any better than that.”

Scioto Gives will also be highlighting the work done by young men throughout the Scioto Valley with the local Boy Scouts of America (BSA).

For over 100 years, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) has made a positive impact in the lives of young people in communities across the country. As America’s largest and oldest youth serving organization, the BSA has continued to prepare young men and women for the future by instilling in them the values and principals needed to become independent and productive pillars of their communities.

Donations to the Scioto Foundation grow the Simon Kenton Council endowment, which generates predictable, steady income to help fund the expenses of offering safe, quality programming and ensures the group’s future for another 100 years.

“Scouting allows young men and women to develop skills that foster positive ethical value and that should not be taken for granted,” Chris Wiseman, of the BSA, said. “If you want to make a positive impact for young people then continue, or begin, to support our Scouts.”

History will also be preserved as a part of the Scioto Gives campaign, with the 1810 House competing.

The 1810 House homestead is a small museum that plays an important role in the history of Scioto County. There are many interesting artifacts that represent the history, ranging from the 17th century through 1946. The house is owned by the Scioto County Historical Society and is kept by volunteers. The 1810 House is financially dependent on donations for the operating expenses of the house.

This historic old farm homestead represents the courage of pioneers who cleared, settled and cultivated the wild forest near the Ohio River. Three generations of the Aaron Kinney bloodline occupied this home.

The Southern Ohio Medical Center will also be competing for funding that will be used to raise health awareness and patient needs through many avenues.

The mission of SOMC’s Development Foundation is to make a difference by identifying the community’s health and wellness needs while bridging the gap between those needs and the cost of the solutions.

“The goal of our Development Foundation is to provide much needed resources to sustain the needs of our community,” SOMC President and CEO Randy Arnett said. “We encompass fundraising efforts that support initiatives throughout our local area, ranging from the purchase of new equipment and technology, to funding projects that engage our community’s health and wellness needs.”

The Development Foundation supports fundraising efforts for many areas of need, including Hospice, Cancer, Employee Relief, Heart & Vascular, Pediatrics and Community Health & Wellness. It also raises funds for the SOMC Endowment Fund, which will enable SOMC to continually deliver extraordinary care.

Contributions from donors will be received on the Scioto Foundation website, www.sciotogives.org from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on October 22. Using the pull-down menu on the website, donors can select their charity and the amount they wish to donate, list credit card information and press “donate.”

Donors can also drop checks off at the Foundation’s office at 303 Chillicothe Street or transfer stocks between the hours of 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on the designated day.

Reach Joseph Pratt at 740-353-3101, EXT 1932, or by Twitter @JosephPratt03.

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