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local giving

November 2017 A Special Supplement to


Psychlogical Benefits of Giving Iroquois County Charities Charity Fraud Choosing A Charity How To Give More Than Money Getting Kids Excited About Philanthropy

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Community Giving

November 2017

Those helping locally

There are many worthwhile charitable organizations in our community that work on special projects for others throughout the year, and most of the members do so on a volunteer basis. Listed here are some of those organizations and how to contact them.

Toys For Tots

Bill Nutter, coordinator

United Way of Kankakee and Iroquois Counties ABATE Hubbard Trail

Thrivent Financial for Lutherans

Tiffany DeRocco


Leigh Benson


Larry Burton

342 W Walnut St, Watseka


Shane Cultra, president, Jeannie Weiss, secretary


Food From the Heart

Martha Howe


Catholic Charities, Diocese of Joliet American Cancer Society/Relay For Life

Jennifer Wick


Carrie Robinette


Onarga Lions Club

Iroquois County Historical Society/Old Courthouse Museum Watseka Food Pantry

Judy Ficke

103 W Cherry St., Watseka

Martha Howe


Watseka Elks

Robert Gray 519 N. Sixth, Watseka

Martinton Community Food Bank

Carla Prizy and Connie Stirling

Modern Woodman Chris Meredith

Jefferson Plaza, 1801 North State Route 1, Watseka

Sheldon Area Food Pantry


Carol Munson P. O. Box 152, Sheldon Jennifer Ingram

Watseka Lions

Eldon Sprau

Christopher Both

Knight of Columbus 815-486-7157 815-432-2721

P.O. Box 276, Watseka

2125 East 1730 North, Watseka 815-471-4499

Dick Arie, Grand Knight

Ashkum Lions Club Watseka Kiwanis Club


213 Thomas Street, Martinton

Veterans Assistance of Iroq. County

Watseka Masonic Lodge

Stacey Smith, 815-471-5026,


815-471-5569 815-698-2667

Darin Clatterbuck, 815-867-6749

November 2017

Community Giving

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Psychological benefits of giving Charities often benefit significantly from the generosity of donors and volunteers. But the person providing the philanthropy also takes away something from the experience, and there actually may be measurable emotional advantages to being charitable. Helping others not only makes a person feel good, but it may also increase physical and emotional well-being. Several studies have indicated that being generous has profound effects on how a person thinks and feels. One such study from researchers at Cornell University uncovered that volunteering increases one’s energy, sense of mastery over life and self-esteem. It also promotes feelings of positivity, which may strengthen and enhance the immune system. In 2008, Dr. Ellen Langer, a professor of psychology at Harvard University, advocated for giving gifts and being generous -- even in tough financial times. “When you give a gift it makes you feel generous, it makes you feel in control, it’s good for your self-esteem, and it’s good for the relationship,” says Langer. According to psychologist Robert Ornstein and physician David Sobel, authors of “Healthy Pleasures,” they talk about a “helper’s high.” This is a sense of euphoria that volunteers experience when helping others. It can be described as a sense of vitality and a warm glow. It has been compared to a runner’s high and may be attributed to a release of endorphins.

Various studies have found that donors and volunteers gain the most from a charitable encounter. Here are a few more health benefits that may result from being altruistic: * an activation of emotions that are key to good health, * lower stress levels, * longer periods of calm after the generous act, * improved mood, and * a potentially longer life span. There are many ways to give back and experience these physical and psychological benefits, including: * sharing experiences at a school, * volunteering at a hospital, * volunteering at a national or local park, * donating unused items, like clothes or cars, * reading to children at a library, * helping to care for animals at shelters, * volunteering at a hospice and comforting those at the end of their lives, * donating supplies to a new teacher and * becoming a companion to a senior citizen.

Many in our community work quietly, tirelessly, all year long so that children will not be forgotten. Their reward? A smile on the face of a child.

Touching hearts, saving lives...

While you might not realize it - you have touched someone’s life today. Your gestures and generosity have helped make someone’s life a little easier. Maybe you gave blood, worked or bought goods from the bake sale, taught Sunday School or sent money to a local cause. However you chose to participate you did make a difference. We are proud to be part of such a great community that takes care of each other

234 N. Jefferson, Watseka, IL


We applaud these neighbors and their effort to brighten the lives of children.

Iroquois Cafe Iroquois, IL


Daily Breakfast, Lunch & Evening Specials

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Community Giving

November 2017

Protect yourself against charity fraud

Charity fraud is a devious crime that victimizes both donors and the people and organizations who rely on donations to get by. Such fraud is more common than many people may know, and the people perpetrating the fraud may surprise prospective donors as well. In 2015, the Federal Trade Commission and attorneys general in all 50 states and the District of Columbia filed a lawsuit against four cancer charities they accused of scamming consumers out of more than $187 million. The lawsuit alleged the groups used sophisticated, deceptive accounting schemes to defraud donors and make their charities appear larger and more efficient than they actually were. So while it’s easy to assume all perpetrators of charity fraud are shady criminals acting alone on the other end of the telephone, donors should know that charity fraud can be perpetrated by sophisticated businessmen as well. Donors concerned about charity fraud can protect themselves and the money they have earmarked for charitable donations in various ways.

• Request written information. Sophisticated fraud operations are successful because they make concerted efforts to appear as legitimate as possible. So a willingness to provide written information and brochures does not necessarily mean a charity is lawful. However, an organization’s unwillingness or inability to produce such information is a telltale sign of a fraudulent operation or one that may be unorganized and unable to meet its mission. Steer clear of such organizations. • Request and/or order tax returns. In the United States, copies of certain returns filed with the Internal Revenue Service by charities and nonprofits are available for purchase from the IRS. Many reputable organizations may share their tax returns with prospective donors, but donors who want to exercise due diligence can order the documents themselves. • Check a charity’s rating. Since 2001, Charity Navigator has examined tens of thousands of nonprofit financial documents in an effort to develop an unbiased,

objective and numbers-based rating system for charitable organizations. Prospective Donors can access these ratings free of charge as they look to make more informed and intelligent giving decisions and avoid being victimized by fraudulent or dishonest organizations. • Never feel pressured to Donors who take time to vet charities prior to making donations donate. Solicitors can protect themselves against charity fraud. or fundraisers of reputable fraudulent or incompetent organizations. organizations are discouraged from Charity fraud victimizes donors and the pressuring prospective donors for donations. people and organizations they seek to assist. Telephone or in-person solicitors who Prospective donors should take time to employ pressure tactics when seeking properly vet charities before making their donations are very likely affiliated with donations.

Commited to Creating Wildlife Habitat and Supporting Youth Activities in Iroquois County For Over 31 Years! Iroquois County Pheasants Forever

November 2017

Community Giving

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Choosing a charity that’s right for you Donors play an integral role in the success of charities and other nonprofit organizations. Such firms would be unable to remain operational if not for the support of private donors whose volunteering and financial contributions make it possible for organizations to meet the goals set forth in their mission statements. Recognizing the important role they play in the success of a charity, donors may be overwhelmed when faced with the decision of which charity they want to work with or donate to. The following tips can help donors make that often difficult decision. • Find a cause you can connect with. Many people are more motivated to support a charity they have a personal connection with, whether that support involves donating money or volunteering. For example, you may be more likely to get involved with a charity that raises funds for cancer research if you or someone close to you had a bout with cancer. A cause you can connect with is one that’s more likely to inspire you to do more, which is a goal of many people upon deciding to work with or

donate to a charity. • Consider something local. If you intend to volunteer, then consider a local charity, as you might be more involved if you work with a charity that sponsors programs or routinely hosts events or functions within your community. Another advantage to choosing a local charity is that it allows donors to have a direct impact on their own communities, something that may spur donors to become more involved as time goes on. • Dip your toes in the pool. Once you find a charity that aligns with your passion and, if you plan to volunteer, your schedule, you can take steps to see how the charity is attempting to fulfill its stated mission. Even if you don’t have the time necessary to regularly volunteer, sign up for an organization-sponsored event so you can verify that the charity is doing a good job with its programs. You may notice the charity is wasting resources on nonessential expenses, a red flag that may suggest your donation of time and/or money would be better spent elsewhere. But you may notice

Let’s All Do Our Part...


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that the charity is doing a great job and feel confident that your donation won’t be going to waste. Conduct this trial run before you decide to support or fully volunteer with a charity. • Ask around. Much like you might read a product review or ask a neighbor for a recommendation about a contractor, you also can ask around when researching which charity to work with. If you want to work with a local charity, then ask others in your community if they can recommend an organization. If you don’t have time to volunteer but want to donate, research a charity online before making a donation. Sites such as Charity Navigator (www. and Guide Star® ( vet charities and can prove to be valuable resources for prospective donors who want to learn about the missions, legitimacy, impact, and financial health of charitable organizations. Choosing a charity to work with is no small task. But prospective donors can take several steps to make the process go smoothly.

FOR YOUR HELP! ABRA’s goal is to give individuals the opportunity to live and work in their most natural setting with the help and support they need. Your support has enabled our clientele to work in the community with job coaches and join in activities on a regular basis. While we may be a small agency number wise, we are large at heart. It is through the support of businesses and individuals like you that–

through choices, disabilities disappear.

LOCAL BUSINESSES Times-Republic Office, The Daily Journal, Sheldon Public Library, ABRA Office, Darrow Church of Christ, Sheldon Masonic Lodge, E*On Climate & Renewables, Sheldon Crop Production Services, Milford Christian Church, Hoopeston Chestnut Street Church of Christ, Watseka Travel Discoveries.

107 N. Fourth St.

ABRA 815-429-3007

Sheldon, IL

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Community Giving

November 2017

Make a difference without donating money

When making charitable donations, men and women may feel a financial gift is the most valuable contribution they can make. Though charities and nonprofit organizations will always rely on the financial generosity of donors, charitable men and women can donate without writing a check. The following are a few of the many ways to make a difference even if money is tight. * Donate blood. Donating blood is a great way for men and women to make a difference in the lives of others. According to the American Red Cross, blood donors must be healthy, be at least 17 years old (some states allow 16-year-olds to donate blood with parental consent) and weigh at least 110 lbs. There may be additional weight requirements for certain donors, and the men and women taking blood donations will discuss prospective donors’ health with them prior to drawing any blood. The advantage of donating blood is that donors can often do so several times per year. * Become an organ donor. Organ

donation is a selfless act that can save someone’s life. When men and women pass away, their organs can often still be used to keep others alive. Carry an organ donor card with you in your wallet or purse and let your loved ones know that you have signed up to be an organ donor upon your death. * Foster parent a pet. The economy and the housing market has been tough on families, and many have been forced to give up their pets when relocating from a home to an apartment. As a result, animal shelters and nonprofit rescue organizations have been overwhelmed with house broken pets whose families could no longer keep them. Such organizations rely on pet foster parents to house, care for and feed the animals until they find permanent homes. Becoming a foster pet parent is a great way for men and women to help a nonprofit rescue organization in their communities. * Donate time. Volunteering is another great way to make a difference without donating money. By donating time, people are helping an organization of

Focused on Our Community

Many individuals give in different ways - Some with their time and talents, others with goods and services. Local groups holding fundraisers to help those in need and those supporting the fundraisers are also ways in which we are ‘focused on our community’. We take care of each other. How you give is up to you, but it is not forgotten nor is it unappreciated. We are proud to be a part of and live in such a great community.

See our Model Home at: 235 N. Jefferson (Rt. 1 N), Watseka, IL 60970 Phone: 815-432-2053 Welcoming Families Home Since 1999!

their choosing keep its operating budget down so more of its resources can be used toward fulfilling the organization’s mission statement. Rare is the charity that doesn’t need volunteers, and many charitable organizations will even ask volunteers about their professions to determine if professional skills can be put to use while they’re volunteering. * Clean out closets and the garage. One of the easiest ways to make a difference is for individuals to clean out their closets and donate clothing and other items to a nearby Goodwill store. Anything from old neckties to appliances can be donated, and a person might even be able to reduce their annual tax bill when making certain donations. Goodwill stores don’t simply give donations directly to the needy. In many instances, the stores sell the donations and use the money raised to support a host of charitable endeavors. So even items like an electric drill no longer being used or a microwave since replaced can make valuable donations.

Donating blood is one way men and women can make a difference when money is tight.

Why not decorate a Christmas tree or make a Christmas House for this year’s

Christmas Tree Lane and Christmas House Gallery

Individuals, organizations, businesses, nursing homes and families are invited to participate This year the Historical Society/Old Courthouse Museum is celebrating its 50th Anniversary. What would be better than to have 50 decorated trees and you can help us meet this goal. Trees and houses must be ready by Dec. 1. Artificial trees are provided – you provide lights and decorations. The theme for the trees is “50 Golden Years”

Be sure to join us on Dec. 2 for our Christmas Open House and Sounds of the Christmas Season concert plus the opening of Christmas Tree Lane and the Christmas House Gallery ~ Refreshments will be served ~

Call 815-432-2215 between the hours of 10-4 Monday through Friday for more details.

November 2017

Community Giving

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How to teach kids to be philanthropic

Introducing children to charity early in their lives can lay a foundation of philanthropy that lasts a lifetime. The more kids witness charitable giving, the more likely they are to embrace charity as they grow up. Teaching children that it is better to give than to receive can be challenging, but it’s never too early to instill philanthropic feelings in a child. In order to help young children understand what it means to be charitable, try these ideas. Open a dialogue A study from the United Nations Foundation and the Women’s Philanthropy Institute at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis found simply talking to children about giving increased the likelihood that children would give by 20 percent. Being specific makes a difference in getting the message out there. For example, rather than mentioning we n have to give because it makes the world . a better place, explain how donating food will help feed the less fortunate who cannot afford to feed themselves.

Lead by example Call the children over when you are doing something that pertains to philanthropy. Show them checks being written to help various nonprofits, or include them in outings that involve volunteer work. Look for easy ways to give Charity doesn’t require a large amount of money or substantial effort, and starting with something simple can make for a great introduction to charity. Begin with small projects kids can embrace and understand. Spend time going through clothes that no longer fit and make a trip to a charitable clothing drive or collection bin. Bring your child to a clothing store or toy store and pick out an item that can be donated to a less fortunate child. This way he or she can participate firsthand. Help out neighbors Being charitable doesn’t have to mean spending tons of money or even putting together material things. It can involve donating time to others who may need assistance. Service-oriented projects, such

as raking leaves, baking cookies or taking in elderly neighbors’ garbage pails, are all types of charity. Children can become friendly and play with other children who may have a parent serving in the military or support someone who has special needs. Get involved with pets Animals and children seem a perfect

match, and one charitable effort kids may embrace is helping animals. Bring food or pet supplies to a shelter or the local humane society. Allow children to interact with the animals they are helping. There are many ways to acclimate children to charitable living, and doing so may lay the foundation for a rewarding life.

VOLUNTEER Jammin’ Christmas!! What could be better than waiting for Santa in new jammies? Help us fill our window with jammies before Dec. 8 and spread the warmth this jammintabulous season.

Thanks to you we have filled our window in past years with blankets, socks and scents.

Watseka Park District 110 S. Third St. Watseka, IL

Local volunteers driving change in your community 110 S. 3rd St. Watseka, IL 815-432-2416

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Community Giving

Seniors can give safely and successfully

People often gain a greater sense of purpose and happiness after giving to charity, and seniors are no exception. According to a study from Merrill Lynch and Age Wave, today’s retirees are almost six times more likely to define success by generosity than their wealth when compared to seniors of yesteryear. Seniors’ eagerness to give makes them prime targets for charity fraud. Giving in retirement while avoiding fraudsters Seniors can find gratification through charitable giving. is challenging, but seniors Be aware of sound-alike charities who recognize their Some fraudulent charities like to vulnerability can reduce their risk of falling piggyback on the success of reputable victim to criminals. organizations. They may operate under names that sound similar to legitimate Research before giving charities or create business logos that are To ensure a donation will be spent in nearly identical. People should not be fooled the way it was intended, seniors should by these tactics. thoroughly research organizations before

becoming donors. One of the first places to start is Charity Navigator. A 501(c) (3) public charity, Charity Navigator has been steering the public in the right direction regarding charities since 2001. Their analysts research thousands of financial documents, rating charities on accountability, transparency and performance, among other criteria. Individuals also can research charities by getting recommendations from friends and family, as well as learning about organizations through the Better Business Bureau. Online rankings and scam alerts can help with decision-making as well.

Don’t feel pressured High-quality charities do not need to resort to pressure tactics to solicit funds. Similarly, individuals should not feel put upon to donate because of gifts received in the mail. Such gifts commonly include note pads and return address labels. Seniors should make donations based on how they feel about a particular charity and the difference they want to make.

Explore all the ways to give Seniors can give back in various ways. Charitable gift annuities and charitable trusts are great ways to give, and seniors can even donate senior discounts through a giving site called Boomerang Giving. Seniors also can volunteer their time. Donate directly Contact a charity directly to donate instead of using a middle person or unconfirmed entity on the phone. Use a credit card or check so there is a receipt of the donation. Opt out of information sharing Donating to one charity should not result in a deluge of solicitations from others. Individuals should tell a charity they do not want their personal information shared. This also helps to reduce the risk of being contacted by bogus charities. Seniors who give to charity reap many rewards. But safeguarding one’s finances is of paramount importance when donating to charity.

November 2017

Celebrating A Commitment To Community Our employees make a difference by donating their time, energy and talents to helping others. Some of the organizations where you might find us include: American Red Cross VFW Kankakee Community College Watseka Community Schools Watseka Community Schools Athletic Department Milford Area Schools Crescent City School Iroquois County Sheriff Dept. Watseka Police Department Riverside Medical Center Iroquois Memorial Hospital American Cancer Society Kiwanis Future Farmers of America Boy Scouts Girl Scouts Toys for Tots Local Area Food Pantries Local Area Churches Multiple Area Individual Fundraisers Iroquois County Area Firefighters Watseka Area Chamber of Commerce

1090 E. Walnut St., Watseka, IL • 815-432-4948

Local Giving November 2017  
Local Giving November 2017  

A special supplement to the Times-Republic