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Category: Donors

Donors

Welcome Home

I’m not really sure which “fact of life” is crazier right now – that it’s been a month since I’ve graduated from Southeast or the fact that it’s been a month since I began working at United Way! Either way, crazy is good for me so I guess I’ll take it.

For those who don’t know me, my name is Kristin Funderburk and I’m the new Community Relations Manager here at United Way of Southeast Missouri. I just graduated from Southeast Missouri State University in May with my Bachelor of Science in Mass Communication, Public Relations. Hopefully you’ve seen me out and about, but if not I’m sure you will soon! I’ll be spearheading the upcoming campaign season, as well as working on some Community Impact events and Marketing pieces.

First and foremost, thank you. Every single person that I’ve met over the course of the last month has welcomed me and been so supportive and understanding as I make this transition and try my hardest to answer all the questions that I can. (When exactly does the “I’m new here” excuse wear off, anyhow?) Honestly, I knew I was becoming a part of a humble and caring community, but this last month has been incredible.

So what have we done over these last 30 days? The real question is what haven’t we done?! I’m so proud to say that our 29th Annual Golf Tournament that took place on June 3rd was one of our most successful tournaments to date. I’d like to give a huge thank-you to Nicholle Hinkle for making everything happen, and the wonderful ladies on the committee for ensuring I made it through the morning in one piece. Also, everyone at Kimbeland went above and beyond to help us execute the “little things,” and we couldn’t be more thankful for their help. Elizabeth and I have already started brainstorming ideas for next year – our 30th year – so be sure your calendars are marked for June 2nd, 2017!

Another piece of the puzzle that I’ve been able to work with is our upcoming United Days of Caring weekend taking place September 9th – 11th. This is your chance to grab your friends, family and/or co-workers and spend a part of your weekend helping out the community. We have so many incredible projects and organizations in need of your help that weekend, and I’m beyond excited to see the impact our communities can make in just three short days. We’re in the final stages of planning this “mini-campaign,” so be on the lookout for more information coming soon!

I’m also privileged to work on a couple of Community Impact events this summer. The 2016 Back to School Kickoff will be taking place on July 26th from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Central Middle School, and is sure to be a day full of opportunity and fun for all the families involved. Additionally, the 3rd Annual Stuff the Bus event will take place August 6th at various Walmarts across the region. Both of these events have been a great opportunity for me to work with area businesses and schools to ensure that everyone heading back to school this fall is prepared in every way possible.

Finally – marketing. I’ve spent a decent chunk of time learning how to operate Easy Post and update our website. I’ve added details on all of our events; soon you’ll be able to find updated campaign materials and news pieces on everything we’ve accomplished here at United Way.

Not to mention – I’ve worked alongside Procter & Gamble for their “Who Do You Run For?” 5K, developed a social media strategy that will go live on July 1st and worked with Elizabeth to get the upcoming campaign season planned. I’ve clearly been a busy bee, but I can’t say that I’d have it any other way!

Once again, thank you all so much for your support during this transition. There’s no doubt in my mind that I’m  exactly where I’m supposed to be, doing exactly what I’m supposed to be doing. I look forward to meeting more of our wonderful supporters and can’t wait to continue working with each and every one of you!

 

Kristin Funderburk
Community Relations Manager

Donors

Whats on My Desk?

Believe it or not, the 2015 campaign season is just around the corner, so I’ve spent the last couple of months digging into data from the previous campaign in addition to brainstorming ideas on how to make an even bigger difference this year in the lives of those in need. I’ve also made it a priority to meet with the businesses in the area that run workplace campaigns in an effort to better understand how they run the campaign internally and what is important to their employees. That way we can connect with them on a deeper level – it’s all about relationships, right?

However, it’s important to understand that my role at United Way isn’t just about the dollars. It’s about understanding what each individual donor is passionate about, whether that passion be supplying children with clothing for school, helping struggling families get their finances in order, or delivering meals to homebound seniors. If people aren’t passionate about the work or don’t understand what it is that we do, they likely aren’t going to pay it forward…plain and simple. Although this is sometimes a challenge because there are thousands of them and only one of me, everyone who helps with the campaign – our chairs, Employee Campaign Coordinators, volunteers, staff, and Board – gives us the capability to reach even more potential donors. But the work doesn’t stop there.

One of my many goals for the 2015 campaign is to thank existing donors more often and keep them informed about the work both United Way and our funded partners are doing to better the community. Let’s be honest, we should be working just as hard to keep donors on board as we do to get them there in the first place because few people want to support something they aren’t connected to. If it weren’t for our loyal donors, United Way wouldn’t be making a difference in people’s lives every day right here in Southeast Missouri.

So, my challenge to you is to help me out and help our community out. Next time you are talking with your co-workers over lunch or are out with friends and family for a fun activity, talk to them about United Way. Find out what they are passionate about and explain to them that our mission is to help people better themselves and become more independent. Through our many programs and funded partners, we can connect people in need with people who can help, which creates lasting change. After all, we are neighbors helping neighbors, and that’s what makes our community so unique and enjoyable to be a part of. 

Donors

Donor Spotlight: Carolyn Sandgren

1. How long have you lived in this community?

I relocated to this community in 1990, so I have lived here for about 25 years. 

2. What is your occupation?

I wear many hats as the President/CEO of Elite Travel, Inc. My main focus is a travel expert, bringing over 30 years of personal world travel experience. 

3. What are you passionate about?

I am passionate about my children, Skyler and Levi. My two boys are kind, hard working and strong in their faith…what more could I ask for? I am also passionate about my relationship with God and living a life on integrity. I often miss the mark, but I try my hardest to live a life of purpose. 

4. What are your hobbies?

The obvious answer is traveling – I love a beautiful hotel and great scenic vistas and views! I also enjoy photography, art, coffee, experiencing new and exciting foods, theater (especially Phantom of the Opera and Wicked!), boutique shops and unique items. Something that most probably don’t know about me is my love for playing Scrabble and Bible Trivia!

5. What do you love most about this community?

What I love most about this community are the people that live here and the sense of community that has been created. I have developed a lifetime of great relationships! People in Southeast Missouri tend to give more than they receive and are happy to help advance the good of others – they are people with a heart. 

6. How long have you been a United Way donor?

I have been donating to United Way for the past two years. 

7. Why do you choose to support your community through United Way?

As I became more involved in the community, I began to see what a difference United Way is making. The more I got involved by attending United Way events, volunteering for Read to Succeed and learning about GRACES, I saw that the organization is making a real difference in my own back yard. Cape Girardeau is where I live, work and have raised my children, so I want to leave a good legacy here. As a small business owner, and personally, I believe in United Way’s mission and see it changing lives daily. 

Donors

Donor Spotlight: Nicholas Burger

1. How long have you lived in this community?

I am a native of Southeast Missouri and will likely never leave the area. 

2. What is your occupation?

I am a Commercial Loans Relationship Manager with Commerce Bank in Cape Girardeau.  

3. What are you passionate about?

I am passionate about each day I have on this earth and strive to make a positive impact on every person in my life. 

4. What are your hobbies?

I enjoy nearly anything that involves being outdoors. I attempt to play golf as often as my schedule allows and I really enjoy lawn care/landscaping. 

5. What do you love most about this community?

I love the diversity in our community. Southeast Missouri is full of diversity from its people to its businesses, activities, and geography. 

6. How long have you been a United Way donor?

I have donated to United Way for 5 years.  

7. Why do you choose to support your community through United Way?

There are many people in our community who desire a greater life or who are capable of doing great things and all they need is the support to get them started. My parents got me off to a great start and prepared for the real world. Unfortunately, many people do not have the same blessing. United Way is a great organization that can give a child, adult or family the support they need to become successful or simply help out in a time of need. I choose to donate to United Way because I like knowing that my donation goes to work right here in Southeast Missouri. 

Donors

Donor Spotlight: Dru Reeves

1. How long have you lived in this community?

I have lived in Southeast Missouri since 1973. 

2. What is your occupation?

I am the General Manager (wearer of many hats) at Horizon Screen Printing. I also serve as a Sergeant First Class (Petroleum Supply Instructor) in the U.S. Army Reserve. 

3. What are you passionate about?

I am passionate about motorcycling and my family. 

4. What are your hobbies?

Chameleons…we have seven of them! And motorcycling of course 🙂

5. What do you love most about this community?

I love that the community is not too big, but it also isn’t too small. It is close enough to St. Louis and a great place to raise a family. 

6. How long have you been a United Way donor?

I have been a donor of United Way for 15+ years. 

7. Why do you choose to support your community through United Way?

United Way makes it easy to combine my donations with other folks to make a wider spread impact on the community. 

Donors

Donor Spotlight: Nick Dacy

1. How long have you lived in this community?

I have lived in Southeast Missouri for about ten years now. 

2. What is your occupation?

I work as a computer and network technician at CPU, Inc. in Cape Girardeau. I also do the same type of work in the Army Reserve. 

3. What are you passionate about?

I am passionate about my family and friends…providing for them, protecting them, and teaching them to do the same for themselves. 

4. What are your hobbies?

I enjoy camping, hunting, and spending time with my 8 year old son. 

5. What do you love most about this community?

I love that there is always an opportunity to grow and improve our community. There are many ways for individuals to enhance themselves within our community as well. 

6. How long have you been a United Way donor?

I have just recently began donating. 

7. Why do you choose to support your community through United Way?

I know what it’s like to be just out of reach of better things, a better life…knowing that sometimes the simplest of help can make all the difference in someone’s live. No matter what I may or may not have going on in my own life, I always make sure that I make myself available to help someone else who needs it. By supporting United Way, I can help others through resources that may be of greater help than what one person alone can provide. 

Donors

Donor Spotlight: Stephanie Rogers

1. How long have you lived in this community?

I’ve lived in Cape Girardeau for more than 12 years. However, I have family here and spent a lot of time in Cape growing up, so it has always felt like my second home (now it’s my first!). When I moved here, I planned to live here for a couple of years and move on for my career, but this community has a way of making you never want to leave – now I don’t plan to!

2. What is your occupation?

I’ve been the Director of Marketing & Wellness at Broadway Prescription Shop for 7 months. This is both a new job and career for me. I was previously at KFVS-12 for almost 12 years. It has been a busy, growing, learning 7 months for me and I’m loving it! Working for a local business, as well as a place that contributes to a healthier community, is so rewarding. 

3. What are you passionate about?

I’m passionate about creating a life that I love and spreading that to others. I think too often we get caught up in the stress of every day. I definitely do that myself sometimes too, but at the end of the day I try and make sure I’m doing the things that make me happy and try to be an influence in the lives of my kids, family, and friends to make sure they’re doing that too. For me, enjoying the simple things with the people I love, working at a job I’m proud of, doing the things on my bucket list now, or being part of an organization like the United Way and other worthy causes makes me feel like I am truly making a difference in people’s lives. 

4. What are your hobbies?

Most of all I like to spend time with my family and friends. I have a tight knit family and group of friends and I love to be around the people I love, preferably over a meal and maybe a glass of wine! Other than that, I enjoy shopping (local, of course!), traveling, and reading. 

5. What do you love most about this community?

I love the people. Cape is big enough to give you the opportunity to meet a lot of people in many different walks of life and have a chance to be involved in so many different ways, but small enough that you don’t get lost in the crowd or have trouble making those connections. People here are just friendly and you truly feel like you are part of a community, not just living in a town. I love that I can go out to dinner and see at least a couple of people I know and they’ll always have smiling faces or kind words. I also love our downtown. It’s the heart of the community and it has been exciting to watch it grow in so many ways…giving me more and more reasons to spend my time there!

6. How long have you been a United Way donor?

I have been giving to United Way, whether through monetary donations or volunteer time, for about 8 years. I first learned about the organization and its local efforts through a workplace campaign. I was so moved that a couple of years later, I decided to start an event that could help give in an even bigger way – the 5KFVS. My work through that event and the money it raised for United Way was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life! 

7. Why do you choose to support your community through United Way?

We all know that there are economic, social and financial needs in our community and that some of our neighbors need our support. Sometimes it’s hard to figure out how you can be that help and make a real impact at solving those needs. The United Way is the perfect place to do that. I love that one organization impacts so many! From serving seniors to helping kids to giving to those in rough times, the United Way is there. They go above and beyond and learn how to fix those problems rather than just put a band-air on them, which makes our community stronger. That’s a group you want to be part of!

Donors

Donor Spotlight: Josh Hinkle

1. How long have you lived in this community?

I’ve lived in Southeast Missouri for all of my life. I grew up in Fredericktown, MO and moved to the Cape Girardeau area to attend Southeast Missouri State University. I now reside in Jackson, where I have continued to build relationships within the community through work and volunteerism.

2. What is your occupation?

I am a personal banker at U.S. Bank at the Southeast Missouri State University campus location.

3. What are you passionate about?

Children. I think there is nothing better than making sure our next generation succeeds. It is so important that we be visible and be the greatest role models that we can be. It is a huge responsibility to make sure that each new generation we bring into this world can work together and lead us into a better tomorrow. 

4. What are your hobbies?

In my spare time, I spend a lot of time with my animals. I also enjoy being around my family. I help tutor my youngest brother with his math and find myself proofreading quite a few English papers for my other brother. Not only is it rewarding, but it’s a way to watch our relationships grow.

5. What do you love most about this community?

I love how tight-knit the community is. Coming from a smaller town within Southeast Missouri, I like that Cape Girardeau gives me some of the benefits of a larger city, while still giving me a sense of community while I’m out and about.

6. How long have you been a United Way donor?

This is my second year donating to United Way.

7. Why do you choose to support your community through United Way?

A big influence for me was the fact that my donations stay within our community. We have needs throughout the area and United Way really helps fulfill those needs. I also love that United Way gives me the option to select how my donation is used. With that option, I can really see how the organization benefits the causes I am passionate about. 

Donors

Donor Spotlight: Shelly Kaiser

1.    How long have you lived in this community?

My whole life! This is my hometown – I grew up here, went to school here, work here and play here. 

2.    What is your occupation?

I’ve been in banking for over 25 years. I’m currently a Universal Banker at Alliance Bank.

3.    What are you passionate about?

I love making people laugh and smile. It makes me feel good!

4.    What are your hobbies?

Advocacy, volunteering and spending time with my friends and family. 

5.    What do you love most about this community?

People care! If there’s a problem or opportunity, they care about it enough to unite and make a difference.

6.    How long have you been a United Way donor?

18+ years

7.    Why do you choose to support your community through United Way?

I donate to United Way because EVERYONE benefits from the many funded programs. My employer offers payroll deduction, so it’s convenient and easy!