Times Bulletin correspondent
Marie Miller of Van Wert has always enjoyed mingling with people, listening to their needs, and doing whatever she can to make their lives more tolerable, especially those suffering from illness and other heartbreak. Earlier this summer, Miller was placed in a position where she can exercise her kind heart as this year’s United Way of Van Wert County campaign manager. “I love being able to have the opportunity to deliver Van Wert County United Way’s special message,” Miller said. “I love volunteering to help people who are going through difficult times find a way to get help. I love giving my time and talent to Centraide.
Vicki Smith (Director of United Way) gave Miller the opportunity to speak to corporate representatives and challenge them and their employees to donate to the local campaign. “It seems like everyone likes to be challenged this year. I think for many this is an opportunity to fully support donations after going through the pandemic containment period,” Miller said.
Miller noted that the local agency has introduced a new facet of donations called “100-Club.” Donors are invited to join the club and donate two dollars a week, allowing for a total donation of $100 within a year. “It’s in honor of our celebration of 100 years in Van Wert County,” Miller said. “There are a lot of 100s around here this year. It’s very refreshing to see people give in a way they’ve never given before. “I’ve always been interested in marketing, often because of my interest in people and my connection to them,” Miller said.
She currently runs a Van Wert business known as “Marketing Junkie”. Some of her local clients include the Van Wert County Fair, the Van Wert County Foundation, and numerous non-profit organizations in the city. Its services include areas such as websites, print and electronic media. “I saw ways to get involved in Van Wert County and jumped on it,” Miller said. “I like working, getting to know people and where their needs come from. I feel like it’s my way of giving back to the community. Her husband, William Miller, is employed at Rockford.
Miller said the theme for this year’s campaign is “Live Your Legacy.” “‘Live Your Legacy’ is a time for us to experience what we would leave behind,” Miller said. “Every time you reach out to someone, remember it’s a chance to experience it now rather than leaving it behind.”
This year’s campaign goal is $500,000. Agencies supported by this year’s United Way campaign include: Black Swamp Area Council, Boy Scouts of America, Community Emergency Response Team, Career Connections, Hospice and Adult DayCare, Convoy Sports Center, Crestview Latchkey, Crisis Care Line, Delphos Senior Citizens , Inc., Family Health Care of Northwest Ohio, Inc., Families of Addicts, Haven of Hope, Help Me Grow, Lincolnview Latchkey, Love, Inc., MAU Youth Mentoring, Middle Point Ballpark, Northwest Ohio Community Action Agency, Salvation Army and The Angel Foundation. Others include Van Wert au Goedde, Van Wert Council on Aging, Van Wert County Family and Children First, Van Wert County Humane Society, Wee Care Learning Center, West Ohio Food Bank, Westwood Behavioral Health Center, Inc. Willshire Youth Activities, Wren Association Ballpark, YMCA and YWCA.