Merry Christmas Issaquah donations set new records
Donations to Merry Christmas Issaquah sent the 2011 fund drive well beyond its $65,000 goal. With $77,562 total donations, the fund drive set a new record, 16 percent ahead of last year. There were 233 donors, also a new record.
The donations ranged from a few dollars to dual donations of $10,000. The proceeds will ensure that Issaquah Community Services has adequate funding to meet the growing needs for emergency financial assistance. During 2011, more that $88,000 in assistance was provided to local families facing eviction or utility shut-off, or just needing a bus ticket.
Merry Christmas Issaquah was first initiated by The Issaquah Press in 1981 when about $1,000 was donated through the newspaper’s efforts. Over the past three decades, more than $785,000 has been collected to fund ICS in its mission of providing emergency financial aid.
Demand for assistance increases office hours
In response to the growing demand by people in the Issaquah school district area, Issaquah Community Services has extended its daily office hours. Previously volunteers were available to meet with people requesting assistance for only one hours each weekday, but hours are now 9 to 10:15 a.m. Monday- Friday and 6-7 p.m. Tuesdays.
Community Auction raises $11,700 for ICS
The annual Issaquah Community Auction, presented by the Kiwanis Club of Issaquah, raised $11,700 for Issaquah Community Services in its Fund-an-Item portion of the auction during the May 7 event.
"It's a wonderful feeling to belong to an area where the needs of others are truly on so many people's hearts," said ICS President Marilyn Taylor. "Grinch definitely does not live in Issaquah."
Many ICS volunteers and board members attended the auction and reported that it appeared that every person or couple in the room made a donation to ICS. ICS members also contributed silent and live auction donation items; proceeds will go to other Kiwanis-sponsored organizations in Issaquah.
Past beneficiaries of the fund-an-item portion of the auction include Eastside Domestic Violence, Compassion House, Friends of Youth and Providence Marianwood.
Marilyn Taylor honored for service
ICS President Marilyn Taylor was awarded the 2011 Human & Spiritual Values Award at the Issaquah Community Awards luncheon on May 17. She was in attendance, but the award came as a complete surprise.
"Marilyn’s leadership is helping transform the non-profit organization to better respond to the growing needs of Issaquah families with emergency financial needs. Early last year, she welcomed an advisory board to meet with ICS board members to outline strategies for the future. Since then, ICS has added a website, updated its database of donors; mailed two newsletters to donors; revised its policy training book and held a training session for its volunteers; raised more money than ever before – 100% of which goes back to families to need; increased office hours to meet with clients coming in for financial assistance with rent, utilities and other needs; and relocated the ICS office while reducing overhead costs," said presenter Keith Watts.
"ICS is about neighbors helping neighbors – and there couldn’t be a better neighbor than Marilyn Taylor, who walks in faith, reaching out to help others."