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Glencoe ECSE 3-5  Early Childhood Learning Center

We had our first event for parents with children who have special needs.  We called the event Parent’s Night In.  We had about 30 people and 8 staff.  We catered a meal, had a speaker, and offered childcare for the whole family.  The families who came appreciated this night so much.  They dove into great conversation and shared resources.  We ended the night asking how we as a community can be a support to them.  They want more Parent’s Night In events!  Thank you for partnering with us to encourage these families and let them know they are a valuable part of our community. 


Sunlight Portrait

McLeod Alliance
Funded Program: Domestic Violence Advocacy

(Project funding helped in part to compensate for attorney fees as a means of a support for the client.) The client was strangled by her husband, abuser, 3 years ago and left for dead. He served 30 days in jail for his crime. We helped the client with safety planning and assisted with an Order for Protection. Over the last 3 years, the abuser has continued to abuse Claudia using the court system as a weapon to maintain control over her life. The client was ready to file for divorce but didn’t have money to retain an attorney. We helped her organize the dissolution paperwork and offered support as she prepared to file on her own. The divorce is now going to trial, as her abuser is refusing to agree to many of the clients' requests in the petition. Staff agreed that the client is a good candidate for some of the funding that we received through a special grant. We were able to refer and retain an attorney for the client, so that she can have representation and get through her divorce that she has worked so hard for. Legal Advocate Karina accompanied the client to a consultation with a local attorney, and McLeod Alliance staff will continue to advocate for her.

Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota/LSS Meals

Program: LSS Meals and Meals on Wheels

Pat is an 80-year-old man who lives in the Hutchinson area. He recently lost his wife to cancer. Pat lives on his social security income and doesn't know how to cook his own meals. He visited his doctor because he was feeling very weak. His doctor found him to be malnourished. He suggested that Pat sign up for meals on wheels. Pat says he loves the food, and he really enjoys the homemade desserts. He says "The meals are a real blessing to me. I feel so much better now that I get some good healthy meals."

Old Man Sitting

Meghan's Place

2022 Health and Wellness Day, MPLive! club

Individuals ages 16-35, with a wide variety of cognitive disabilities, including Down syndrome, ASD, Fragile X syndrome, anxiety, depression, other mental health concerns, FASD and other cognitive impairments

Health and Wellness Day, 2022 was once again an amazing event!  We filled all available spots for the club (a maximum of 24 are available).  Our instructors taught break out sessions in exercise, art, cooking and personal safety.  We observed members as they tried new foods, new activities, explored new relationships with both familiar and new faces with both peers and adults.  In cooking, our attendees made fresh spring rolls...with ALL of the colors of the rainbow!  It was not only beautiful to watch, but to see them try such unfamiliar foods...and like them! was awesome!  Exercise club can often be a challenge for individuals with special needs, but our instructor had them doing exercises, working up a sweat and having fun all the while! Art is always a fun class, as the members explored the use of color and how it relates to emotions.  It is always a great idea to revisit personal safety concepts, and it is such a privilege to hear the attendees ask questions, engage in conversation and practice how to take care of themselves, and potentially someone else, in a safe environment.

MPLive!  Tuesday club will continue meeting through the end of December.  This club meets for an hour and a half on Tuesday mornings, with 2 exercise sessions, one art and one cooking.  This past week, we baked and decorated Christmas cookies and treats, and then jumped in the van to deliver plates to our friends at Faith Lutheran Church and Woodstone Senior Living Center.  We ended up singing Christmas carols and sharing a lot of hugs and joy!  We love going out into the community to share with others.  Exercise club keeps us in shape and having fun doing it! And art is always fun- creating home dec items, or creating and sharing things with others.   We will continue this club into the new year again!

Common Cup Ministries
Warm Coat Distribution

Through this distribution of warm winter clothing, we hope to provide protection from the cold for all of those that were unable to purchase for themselves and their children.  There were over 370 recipients of warm clothing, and continue to be served at our office. The thanks and praise received tells the story of how this program is received in the community. School counselors/nurses continue to request for students and are so happy when they hear we can help!

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Northern Star Scouting BSA

Prepared For Life

The Scouting “Prepared. For Life.” program is a continuation of the previous year. The funds from the 2022 grant were
invaluable in building the Scouting program in McLeod County. It provided assistance not only to recruit youth
participants by funding registration scholarships for those interested in joining, it also allowed youth to participate in
a camping experience at one of the Northern Star’s camps through camp scholarships. The 2022 results were positive
with 43 youth participants receiving registration assistance scholarships ($7,740), and 12 youth receiving camp
scholarships ($2,425). Our plan is to continue to make the two types of scholarships available to all youth who are
interested in joining Scouting being able to take advantage of an experience in the great outdoors at camp.

• Scouts BSA Troops 3399/5399 and adults volunteer staff receive instruction on Bird
Island/Winsted migrant youth groups at Stearns Scout Camp, Annandale, MN.

• 1a Adopting Section Hwy 7 Crew: Winsted Scouts BSA Troops 3399/5399 in front of sign
indicating their adopted section of Highway 7 in McLeod County.
• 1b Adopting Section Hwy 7 Working: Winsted Scouts BSA Troops 3399/5399 cleaning up an
adopted section of Highway 7 in McLeod County.

*Through these types of Scouting activities, youth, families, parents, adults, and community organizations
in the McLeod County area join together in providing a better future for everyone in McLeod County.
And they are all grateful for the support they receive through the assistance they receive from the
United Way of McLeod County in making them strong as individuals and as members of their

Common Cup Ministries
Warm Coat Distribution

Through this distribution of warm winter clothing, we hope to provide protection from the cold for all of those that were unable to purchase for themselves and their children.  There were over 370 recipients of warm clothing, and continue to be served at our office. The thanks and praise received tells the story of how this program is received in the community. School counselors/nurses continue to request for students and are so happy when they hear we can help!

McLeod County 4-H

New programming partnerships were created this year with four new programs. These included St. Anastasia’s School (Hutchinson; 90 youth), Kids’ Depot Latchkey Program (Hutchinson; 35 youth), Hutchinson School’s Extended School Year Special Education Summer School (Hutchinson, 150 youth), and First Lutheran Flames of Faith Care (Glencoe; 18 youth). We also continued existing partnerships with Kid’s Depot (Lester Prairie; 21 youth), Panther Adventure Club (Glencoe-Silver Lake; 57 youth), Hutchinson Public Library (Hutchinson; 267 youth), and the Hutchinson School District Summer School Bridge Program (Hutchinson; 124 youth). 

Hutch ECFE
Early Learning Nature Inspired Playscape

"I Love for my family to be outdoors as much as possible and this equipment gives us a chance to experience an ECFE class outdoors. I love that the chairs are big enough for me and my kids to sit comfortably together."

Teuby Continued
Community Outreach

With the Community Partner Grant we received we were able to create magnets to be able to hand out at various events in McLeod County.  We were able to successfully distribute them at local businesses, schools , the county fair and our annual conference, and many trainings.

It has been a great tool to hand out.  There has been great publicity about the national hotline going live on July 16, 2022. 

Mcleod Public Health

Universal Contact Program

Our first contact with new parents occurs in the hospital by providing Talking is Teaching bags. We recently updated our PPNB outreach letter which now includes pictures of the staff who work with the Universal Contact program. These letters are provided in the Talking is Teaching bags. These letters are also mailed out to families if we are unable to get a hold of them via telephone. We are excited to see what impact these letters will have on the acceptance rates for visits.  We noticed that we were able to assist families with weight checks and breastfeeding support, allowing families the opportunity to stay home and avoid trips to the clinic as well as some families feeling safer in their home during these times.  

SWWC Foundation for Innovation in Education
SWWC Student Enrichment Program

Students who attended a student conference were given the opportunity to try something new and find their passion in life. Students who participated in a competition were given the chance to find success with their team and/or individually. We define success in many ways, including an improved Knowledge Bowl team score or placing, receiving an award at the Culinary Skills Challenge, taking a chance and deciding to compete for the first time at the Culinary Skills challenge, creating a clay caricature, learning new writing styles, and so much more. Our student enrichment events give all students the opportunity to experience success and be motivated to learn more. The smiles on the student faces demonstrate what they experienced by participating. 

United Community Action Partnership

HOMES, Housing Options in McLeod for Emergency Shelter

In partnership with UCAP, through this program of providing a motel room, many families were helped to avoid homelessness, address barriers and move on to sustainable housing.

Wheel and Cog Children's Museum


To inspire creativity, discovery, innovation, and the pursuit for life-long learning through extraordinary adventures in play.

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