This is Why We Live in Great Communities

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(Photo above courtesy of United Way)

On Cascade Business News website you will find over 140 local nonprofit organizations. It is a very impressive group of entities that focus on a variety of needs in our communities all over Central Oregon.

Many of the environmental nonprofits including Central Oregon LandWatch focus on protecting the outdoors including farm and forest land, rivers and springs, wildlife habitat and well-designed communities. Deschutes Land Trust is working to protect the forests, meadows and creeks that Central Oregonians desire. The Land Trust is charting the future of Central Oregon via their efforts.

Volunteer in Medicine is helping low-income patients avoid lost workdays and emergency room costs they cannot hope to pay. They draw on talent, experience and goodwill from more than 250 medically trained and lay-person volunteers to help provide primary and specialty care, mental health care, prescription and eye exams to uninsured and critically underserved patients throughout Central Oregon.

Bethlehem Inn is transforming lives with shelter, help and hope through a safe, secure and accountable environments, nutritious meals, hot showers, clothing and access for people experiencing homelessness.
Giving freedom, strength and mobility is a unique service of Healing Reins via healing with horses. Through Therapeutic Riding and Carriage Driving classes, individual and group Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy sessions lives are being changed. They’ve seen young people learn to make healthy
choices and walk away from addiction and anger. And they’ve given freedom, strength and mobility
to people who thought their days of adventure were over.

Council on Aging meets basic needs for seniors helping to determine eligibility for available programs, coordinate care so they can remain in their homes, conduct nutritional risk assessment and develop long-term relationships with clients.

Shepherd’s House Ministries is undertaking huge strides in chronic homelessness. Their goal is to foster a transformational movement in the lives of the hurting, broken and addicted and to engage the community in that process.

The Education Foundation invests in a robust learning environment for Bend-La Pine School children engaging parents, citizens, educators, civic and business leaders building a vibrant school system.
Did you know that Central Oregon’s only child abuse intervention center, KIDS Center, is a private nonprofit tasked with raising $2.5 million every year? This is the amount required to fund child abuse evaluations, treatment and prevention education to thousands of children and families throughout Deschutes, Jefferson and Crook Counties every year.

Youth CareerConnect is a public-private partnership with a group of stakeholders from Central Oregon businesses, school districts, higher education institutions, government agencies and nonprofits. A group of over fifty stakeholders from across Central Oregon is creating a system that increases meaningful work experience opportunities for young people.

The number of children in foster care has drastically increased. Action Through Advocacy provides critical needs services to the foster care community. They improve the retention and success of foster homes, inform and strengthen families who adopt foster children.

Beulah’s Place provides temporary shelter to homeless teens at-risk. Teens are facing enormous obstacles including abuse (physical, sexual, mental, emotional)), domestic violence, sex trafficking and other criminally predatory influences.

These programs are providing the environment, education, structure and support to youth…all coming from J Bar J Youth Services. There are so many volunteer opportunities available through Cascade Youth & Family Center, Grandma’s House for at risk youth, Big Brothers Big Sisters mentoring school bases programs, Academy at Sisters residential treatment for adolescent girls, the Learning Center educational program for youth and Safe Families for Children providing a safe home environment.

The Deschutes Children’s Foundation is unique because it provides facility management free of charge to many nonprofits. They have been able to reduce overhead expense for their partner nonprofits allowing them to focus solely on helping children and families. Over 20,000 clients receive services from child abuse intervention and prevention, mentoring, preschool, pediatric dentistry and help screenings, mediation and physical and occupational therapy.

Focusing on families with babies and toddlers MountainStar is serving children in danger of being abused, neglected or subject to toxic stress. Specially trained staff intervene on behalf of young children and help address the root cause of problems.

A new focus is under way at United Way of Deschutes County adding incubator, convener and collaborator to its role in addressing the needs of the community. United Way is building a social change movement and adopted reducing childhood trauma and improving resilience as its top priorities.
Now it’s your turn to participate via volunteering in any of these local nonprofits and financial contributions. The Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) can help you create a charitable fund that focuses specifically on your interests and maximizes tax deductions. The OCF offers creative and impactful solutions to support the philanthropy of generous Central Oregonians.

Being part of our communities means helping these organizations with time and money — these nonprofits can’t make a difference by themselves.

A few years ago, Lisa Dobey, head of St. Charles Foundation offered this counsel on volunteering, “Becoming a philanthropist means engaging with “your” nonprofit. Philanthropy is an expression of passion for an organization and is a significant way to act on your beliefs. People who are committed philanthropists generally are known for their “cause” – one or two specific charities or a specific area of interest where they focus their efforts.”

We don’t have specific numbers of people who are volunteering, giving to local nonprofits. But you know it’s significant and you know they always needs more. It doesn’t seem to matter whether the economy is good, faltering or holding steady, there are always those who need our care, our help, advice and funds. It’s a privilege to be able to give back to those around you…please use this copy of CBN and decide where you’ll make a focus and a commitment to help.

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About Author

Pamela Hulse Andrews CBN Publisher/Founder, Bend, Oregon

Thanks to getting fired 20 years ago by a previous publication, Pamela Hulse Andrews became the founder and publisher of Cascade Publications Inc. which publishes both the print and online versions of Cascade Business News and Cascade Arts & Entertainment. Pamela’s diverse business background gives her a broad perspective on the arts and business community. She has championed the growth of the arts in the high desert region and played a leadership role in connecting the dots between arts and economic vitality. She writes an assortment of monthly and weekly columns on local arts, politics, business and the economy, creativity and developing entrepreneurship.

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