Yours Truly introduced AM Club members, Sue and Jim, who spoke about the merger between these two groups now working together for the greater good of this community. This alliance is the first of its kind that either Sue or Jim can remember. Sue likened it to “treading new waters but that it was exciting”.
While both organizations exist to serve our local community, Sue said, we can do more together than we can separately. It is best for our Lenawee County community. It was the Lenawee United Way who reached out to neighboring UWs, state & national associations & the Lenawee Community Foundation to increase efficiency in a time of declining revenues, cost of fundraising & staff turnover. 
When all of the due diligence was completed, it was felt that the LCF was the best fit. Both boards then approved moving forward.  The alliance was announced at the LUW annual meeting on June 21st.
The alliance will result in:
  • Increased efficiency with more of the annual funds collected going to local programs and services
  • Increased focus on health and human services with an emphasis on meeting basic needs
  • Increased philanthropy to benefit our Lenawee County community, including legacy gifts.
  • A stronger, healthier, and more vibrant Lenawee County community for everyone.
LCF’s focus has always been on long-term endowment giving, Sue said, whose interest on their holdings allows them to provide substantial grants to worthy causes in the community. The LUW, on the other hand, focuses on annual giving but fits quite well with the “legacy-giving” focus of the LCF. A formal vote of the members of the former Lenawee United Way (any person who donated this past year) each organization will take place on July 27th at the Madison HS Performing Arts Center at 8:30am, Jim Hartley, this year’s chair of the annual campaign now called Lenawee Cares, said.
Jim commended Sue, Joe Williams and each organization’s separate boards for the work they did on this issue and making the decision to insure that all money raised was going to stay in this area! Another date, he said, to remember was September 16th – the first day of the Art-A-Licious around 4pm when Lenawee Cares will have its official Kick Off event. He encouraged us and other service clubs in the area to collect baskets of gloves, hats, mittens, etc. they can give to the needy of our community.
Jim is looking for volunteers who might want to join the Campaign Cabinet of Lenawee Cares and making a few calls to local businesses for donations. If interested you are The Cabinet will meet the second Wednesday of each month.
Another challenge Jim had for us, his club and the Kiwanis Club: On a per capita basis, the club that has the most members in the Pillars Club ($1,000 pledge or donation to Lenawee Cares) between now and the week of the event, will be recognized will a traveling-type award at the annual joint Rotary/Kiwanis pre-Thanksgiving luncheon this November.