Some of the chairpersons responsible for the Blytheville School District’s campaign drive for the United Way of Greater Blytheville are pictured with United Way executive director Mary Helen Moody. The school district provided $3,569.45 to the local United Way. The chairpersons are (seated, from left) Tiffany Snyder of Food Services, Moody, Johnetta Orr of the Blytheville Primary School’s kindergarten center, Diane Jenkins of Blytheville Primary School, (in back, from left) David Cooke of the administration building, Carolyn Barnes of the Maintenance and Custodial Staff, (not pictured) Melissa Snow of Blytheville High School, Michelle Walling of Blytheville High School ALE, Danna Mattingly of Blytheville Middle School and Nicole Turney of Blytheville Elementary School.
By DAVID COOKEBlytheville Schools’ PR Director
Employees of the Blytheville School District have again pooled their resources to benefit the local United Way, and their individual small contributions have turned into one gift that is pretty significant. The Blytheville Schools’ report to the United Way of Greater Blytheville’s 2019 campaign shows a total contribution of $3,569.45. Of that amount, $579.45 (16 percent) was given to the local United Way in cash and checks, as well as $44 in pledges. The remainder of the contribution, $2,946 (83 percent), will be paid on a monthly basis through payroll deductions. The schools’ campaign was completed in early January. The district employees’ gift represents approximately three percent of the local United Way’s goal of $120,000 to be raised. Mary Helen Moody, executive director of the local United Way, stated that the Blytheville School District employees for the last several years have been No. 2 annually in terms of overall contributions to the local United Way. “I can’t say enough about what the school district’s employees mean to the United Way,” Moody stressed. “The Blytheville School District is the only school in north Mississippi County that participates in our fund drives each year and helps the United Way of Greater Blytheville. We appreciate all they do and give and also the time they put into helping our community. The employees are also directly involved with agencies that benefit from the United Way, such as the Girl Scouts, The Haven and Food Pantry.” The individual employees were responsible for the Blytheville Schools’ total contribution to the United Way. No “corporate” gifts were involved. Participation by each employee is completely voluntary and anonymous. David Cooke, the district’s public relations director, organized the schools’ United Way efforts and was the chairperson of the drive for the administration building. Eight other chairpersons were responsible for the four schools, the Maintenance/Custodial and Food Services departments. Those chairpersons were Melissa Snow of Blytheville High School, Michelle Walling of Blytheville High School ALE, Danna Mattingly of Blytheville Middle School, Nicole Turney of Blytheville Elementary, Diane Jenkins of Blytheville Primary and Johnetta Orr of BPS’ kindergarten center, Carolyn Barnes of the Maintenance and Custodial staff and Tiffany Snyder of Food Services. A total of 217 of 369 employees (59 percent) participated in the local United Way campaign. The average gift per individual contributor is $17.49. BHS ALE was the only school to achieve 100-percent participation among its employees, with all 12 employees contributing. United Way of Greater Blytheville funds will be allocated to 12 local agencies for 2019, and every penny of the local money remains in Mississippi County. Those agencies are the NEA Chapter of the America Red Cross, Area XIII Special Olympics, Blytheville Community Samaritans, Blytheville/Gosnell Area Food Pantry, Court-Appointed Special Advocates, Charles Strong Recreation Center, FOCUS, Girl Scouts of Greater Blytheville, Great River Charitable Clinic, The Haven of Northeast Arkansas, Legal Aid of Arkansas and the Mississippi County Union Mission.