United Way program addressing financial stability

A local insurance agent looking for a way to give back to the community found it when he recently reached out to Jackson County United Way.

“I have had so many people around me growing up help me better myself and get stronger, so I would like to be able to do the same for others,” Matt Lucas said.

Because of his desire to help others, Lucas, a Jackson County native who is an agent with Indiana Farm Bureau, went to Maci Baurle, executive director of Jackson County United Way, to come up with ideas to get more involved.

Inspired by Lucas’ initiative, Jackson County United Way proposed the idea of a Neighbors Helping Neighbors fundraiser to help with meeting the emergent need criteria set for individuals working toward financial stability in the upcoming Getting Ahead in a Just Gettin’ By World program, according to a news release from the agency.

This program is a collaborative effort between Jackson County United Way and Anchor House Family Assistance Center and Pantry. The program is derived from Dr. Ruby Payne’s lifelong work to understand and address the needs of low-income families and has been implemented in communities all across the United States.

This program is a holistic approach at moving families toward financial stability, Baurle said. By contributing to this fundraiser, people are equipping their neighbors with tools and resources to move from financial instability to stability.

During her time at Jackson County United Way, Baurle said there are still area gaps that she believes Jackson County United Way can help fill for those families struggling every month.

“Our organizational goal is to move 1,000 working families out of financial struggles and into stability by 2030 through cross-county collaboration,” she said.

“It is my hope that other business professionals in Jackson County will join me in helping our neighbors by contributing even a little to this fundraiser. We can all use a little help sometimes, and it’s our duty as community members to help those around us,” Lucas said.

If you are interested in giving to the Neighbors Helping Neighbors fundraiser, contact Baurle at 812-522-5450, ext. 6, or email [email protected].