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This month’s Volunteer of the Month is special to us, as it comes from within our own office. Brad Martin, Program Coordinator for United Way of Southwest Alabama nominated this month’s Volunteer of the Month based on her high level of commitment to helping others and enriching the community. It is our pleasure to congratulate Alice Skelton, our July Volunteer of the Month!

Hurricane season has begun! The season is predicted to be an uneventful one, but it only takes one storm landing in our area to cause lasting damage. In the event of a local disaster, are you willing to volunteer your time, energy or supplies to get the community back on track? If so, fill out the disaster portion of your Volunteer Connect profile to be contacted in the event of a disaster about how you can help. It’s easy!

Our newest Volunteer of the Month comes to us by our partner agency, Salvation Army of Coastal Alabama. Kelly Hendricks, Special Events/Volunteer Coordinator for Salvation Army, was so impressed by this volunteer she couldn’t wait to send in the nomination. Congratulations to Maribeth Dennis, our June Volunteer of the Month!

Did you know that for every 50 children who do not learn to read in kindergarten, 44 of them will still have trouble in third grade?[i] And children without reading skills in third grade are less likely to graduate high school. In fact, research shows that early grade reading mastery is one of the best predictors of children’s success in school.[ii]  Unfortunately, many children enter school lacking the fundamental skills necessary to succeed, and children who start behind fall even farther behind.

This month’s Volunteer of the Month comes to us from our partner agency, Ozanam Charitable Pharmacy. Ozanam is a non-profit organization that serves the needs of the community through prescription assistance. The pharmacy fills prescription medications at no cost to the patients. They use volunteers daily and were anxious to submit a nominee for Volunteer of the Month. We are delighted to honor Rose Marie Davis as our May Volunteer of the Month!

United Way Emerging Leaders hosted a wine tasting fundraiser on the evening of Thursday, May 7, with the proceeds benefiting Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library of Mobile County, which was designed to encourage reading to preschool children. Each month after a child is registered, up until their 5th birthday, a carefully-selected age-appropriate book is sent to the child’s home. There is no cost to the family, UWSWA provides the books free of charge. Currently, children living in zip codes 36509, 36587, 36605, 36610, 36615, or 36617 are eligible.