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Neighbor to Neighbor 2006 Annual


									Neighbor to Neighbor

                       2006 Annual Report
                             Dear Friends of FIRSTLINK,
                             A family from out of town moves into the
                             house next door. You welcome them with a
                             casserole and an apple pie. Your friends on
                             the next block are juggling a new baby's doc-
                             tor appointments and their older kids' after-
                             school clubs, softball games and music les-
                             sons. You fit the kids into your own carpools.
                             A single parent in the office down the hall is
 Marilee Chinnici-Zuercher   suddenly hospitalized, leaving two young
 President/CEO               teens—or is it three?—to fend for themselves
                             at dinner time. When the sign-up sheet
                             comes around, you pick out a day to cook a
                             little extra at your house to run over to theirs.
                             Someone on your bowling team knows
                             someone whose cousin lost everything in
                             that house fire you heard about on the news.
                             You offer the much-loved living room sofa
                             you put in the basement after you bought the
                             new one.
                             Neighboring starts small, with the nod of
                             your head to a passerby or the unspoken
                             offer to hold the door for a stranger pushing
                             a stroller. Each kindness radiates out and
                             returns, like a boomerang, to enrich your life.
                             That simple nod of the head becomes a
                             neighborhood that creates and shares an

Neighboring starts small. Each kindness enriches your life.

urban garden. A city that offers refuge to fellow citizens driven from
their hometowns by devastating floods. A nation that opens its arms
to victims of a war-ravaged land.
In our increasingly global society, we reach out to a much larger
community than we ever dreamed of. Our mission to connect remains
the same whether we are referring a family to a food pantry in the
Hilltop or conducting volunteer training in Beijing. What changes
is the way we interact. We need to prepare ourselves to work with
different populations.
I have had the privilege to be involved in a number of cultural
exchanges that help us do just that. Last December I spent three
weeks in China with the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations
People Link organization teaching a “train the trainers” volunteer
management course for nongovernmental leaders involved in
developing volunteer centers. In March, four of the Chinese leaders
I met visited FIRSTLINK to see an experienced volunteer center in
action. As they learned about our culture, we learned about theirs.
The term community takes on a different meaning as we find
ourselves interacting closely with people in places we’d perhaps
never heard of only a few years ago. The Merriam-Webster dictionary
defines community as “the people with common interests living in
a particular area. In our expanding world, that “particular area” is
becoming the Earth.

                    Dear Friends of FIRSTLINK,
                    According to the U.S. Census, Franklin
                    County’s population grew from 1,046,872 in
                    2000 to 1,066,886 in 2003. About 3,600 of our
                    new neighbors were born in this country. The
                    rest, more than 16,400, found their way here
                    from other countries. We continue to welcome
                    an average of 105 foreign-born residents each
Chris McGovern      Nearly 40 percent of the immigrant popula-
                    tions arriving in Franklin County come from
Board of Trustees
                    China, Mexico, Africa and India. Columbus has
                    the second-largest Somali population in the
                    United States, numbering between 20,000 and
                    35,000. Many of the new immigrants came
                    from countries with no nonprofit or non-
                    governmental organizations. All came with dif-
                    ferent customs and expectations. Few of them
                    knew how to incorporate themselves into our
                    American society.
                    In fall 2003, area funders, including the
                    Columbus Foundation, Franklin County Board
                    of Commissioners and United Way of Central

Ohio, came together to develop a capacity-building project to address
the needs of foreign-born populations in Central Ohio. Through a
competitive process, nine organizations were selected to participate in
the Capacity Building Initiative: Immigrant and Refugee Organizations,
which provides mentoring and training in areas including board
development and financial management.
During my time as chair of the FIRSTLINK Board of Trustees, I also
chaired the board of KIACA Gallery, one of the selected organizations.
I had the chance to see KIACA strengthen its board, develop a finan-
cial infrastructure and learn the American way to reach out to others.
KIACA and other organizations no longer feel alone. The initiative has
worked as an interpreter, to bring the agencies and their members
into the framework of local nonprofits.
It’s up to us to adapt to our new neighbors, as they continue to adapt
to us. FIRSTLINK is a great place to start. If you need help growing
your organization or reaching out to others, dial 2-1-1 for your connec-
tion. Look to our website for volunteers, training information and
social services. The nine CBI agencies, and many other immigrant
organizations, are in the FIRSTLINK database. Your new neighbors
are bringing you a multitude of gifts. Return the favor. Get involved.

             FIRSTLINK is a great place to start.

2-1-1 makes it easy to give help or get help.

Our Core Competencies
Service demands to FIRSTLINK’s information and referral Call Center
continue to increase as residents search for assistance during
challenging economic times. In addition, the desire for civic
engagement continues to grow, as demonstrated by community
members seeking volunteer opportunities. Due in large part to a major
marketing campaign sponsored by Clear Channel Communications,
the call volume for our information and referral services during the
past year was over 205,000 calls, a 25 percent increase over 2005.
Expansion of 2-1-1 to cellular phones also contributed to call volume.
We have continued to see a steady increase in requests for emergency
food assistance, accounting for over 132,000 of our calls.
Thanks to 2-1-1, FIRSTLINK offers an easy-to-remember number for
people to give or get help. In the past fiscal year, FIRSTLINK furthered
its mission of connecting people to critical community resources and
mobilizing volunteers by offering streamlined access to nonprofit
and government resources through 2-1-1. FIRSTLINK’s expanded
comprehensive database of local services can be accessed 24 hours
a day with three-digit dialing.
With the implementation of 2-1-1 cell phone service and ongoing
enhancements to our database and service capabilities, FIRSTLINK
provides access to a wider scope of resource information.

Our Core Competencies
Training and Volunteer Services
FIRSTLINK promotes volunteerism by providing training to profession-
als and volunteers and by connecting community members with
volunteer opportunities that enhance both the volunteer and the
community. FIRSTLINK training programs provided 3,400 participants,
from 262 organizations, with the tools to improve the services of
nonprofit organizations in our community.
FIRSTLINK volunteer programs helped families, older adults, youth,
persons with disabilities, and community, workplace and schools
groups to successfully engage in meaningful volunteer projects that
truly make a difference in the community.
In the past year, our partnerships have included the 45 member
agencies of the Franklin County Citizen Corps Council, Columbus
Rotary, Columbus Public Schools, 52 RSVP sites around the county,

243 volunteer dentists listed with the Dental OPTIONS program, the
Ohio Department of Health, Ohio Dental Association, Grandview Public
Schools, Community Housing Network, Fifth Avenue Apartments for
Women and 105 sponsoring partners of the Good Neighbors Picnic.
The community impact of these partnerships has been significant.
More than 1,360 high school students engaged in 16,000 hours of
youth-directed service through the Service Above Self Fair. In excess of
300 volunteers served more that 1,000 homeless community members
at the Make a Difference Day Good Neighbors Picnic. Dental OPTIONS
dentist volunteers provided nearly $400,000 worth of critical oral health
care to the poorest of our older adults. More than 340 RSVP members
were recognized for their commitment to the community with
President’s Volunteer Service awards.

Volunteer projects truly make a difference in the community.

Ohioans receive assistance for special health care needs.

The Program
Dental OPTIONS (Ohio Partnership To Improve Oral Health through
access to Needed Services).
The mission of the Dental OPTIONS program is to assist Ohioans
with special health care needs and financial barriers to obtain needed
dental care.

The Story
Ann applied for Dental OPTIONS services at age 79 and had not
been able to afford regular dental treatment for many years. Ann
was referred to the program by her case manager at Senior OPTIONS.
Ann received free dentures from Dental OPTIONS. Ann says of
her experience: “Everyone from the office staff to the dentist was
absolutely wonderful. I don’t know what I would have done without
Dr. T’s help. I had no way to afford what I needed. I had no other
options. ”

The Numbers
• Dental OPTIONS served 285 patients in 29 counties
• 210 dentists donated a total of nearly $400,000 worth of
  dental services
• Six dentists each donated more than $10,000 in services
• One dentist donated from than $12,000 in services and
  restored seven people to oral health

The Program

The Story
Jequetta lived in Laurel, Mississippi, far from the path of Hurricane
Katrina. It was the resulting tornadoes that destroyed her home.
Following the advice of a cousin, she came to Columbus, where
she found a two-bedroom home. FIRSTLINK’s Adopt-a-Home project
matched her with Lord of Life Lutheran Church, which filled her new
home with the necessities and more: food, clothes, a washer and
dryer, even a George Foreman grill. Jequetta earns more cashiering
in Columbus than she did at her factory job in Mississippi. She also
receives benefits, which she didn’t in her previous job. Her cousin’s
wife, a daycare provider, takes care of Jequetta’s two young sons.
“I’m very grateful. You wouldn’t think people would be so nice and
willing to give—even to someone they didn’t know. I want people to
know how thankful I am.   ”

The Numbers
• 140 adults and 136 children were permanently resettled
  in Columbus
• 100 percent of evacuee families who requested services
  received them
• 852 volunteers helped collect goods and prepare homes
• 62 organizations participated in the program
• Cash donations exceeded $15,100

People are willing to give, even to someone they don’t know.

Within three months I was serving on a nonprofit board.

The Program
BOARDLINK connects volunteers interested in serving on the governing
or advisory board of a nonprofit to a collection of over 800 organizations
in Franklin County.

The Story
“Having attended your board training I felt it necessary to get my
name out there so I registered with your BOARDLINK service. Within
three months I was serving on a local nonprofit board that totally
suited my community service interests. I now feel like I can truly
make a difference in this community with a mission I believe in. ”

The Numbers
• 229 training sessions were held, including
  – 53 FIRSTLINK Training Center sessions
  – 24 consultations
  – 58 Beyond the Freeway tours
  – 38 Community Resource and Kinship Care trainings

Financial Summary
Year incorporated 1984

The Numbers
                                         REVENUE (EXPENSE)
1,091,063           2-1-1                INTEREST INCOME
                    1,040,798            15,189
United Way          Volunteer Training   REALIZED/
369,966             564,053              UNREALIZED GAINS
                    RSVP                 (13,558)
PROGRAM GRANTS      138,537
21,689                                   MISCELLANEOUS
                    SUPPORTING           INCOME
SPECIAL EVENTS      SERVICES             32,888
                    Management General   INTEREST EXPENSE
FOUNDATIONS         192,026              (2,214)
205,536             Development
OTHER               6,716
8,892                                    73,169
153,542             1,942,130



FY2006 Contributors
Abbott Labs                                     Elizabeth Crane
Roberta Klein & Thaddeus Adamaszek              Deborah Crowley
Chris Adams                                     Cullman Family Fund
Mark Adelsperger                                Chris Curry
Affiliated Resource Group                       Damon's Grill
Elinor & Chadwick Alger                         Data & Management Services
AllState                                        Janet Davis
American LED-gible, Inc.                        Melanie Davis
Anonymous Donation                              Kathleen DeFrance
Anthem                                          Destinations by Design
Dawn Becker                                     Robert & Alice Eck
Michelle Bell                                   Amy Fair
Paul Bittner                                    Faith Lutheran Church
Bob Evans                                       Fifth Third Bank
Dr. Bradely                                     First Class Events
Cindy Brickner                                  FIRSTLINK Employees
Rowland & Heather Brown                         Michael & Meg Flack
J. Dale Brubeck                                 Forum at Knightsbridge
Buckeye Printing & Mailing Service, Inc.        Franklin County ADAMH
Katherine A. Burcsu & Ronald Miller             Franklin County Children Services
Peggy Calestro                                  Franklin County Commissioners
CareSource                                      Franklin County EMA
Stephen & Elizabeth Cartwright                  Franklin County Job and Family
Center for Effective Discipline                  Services
Chasetek LLC                                    E. Marianne Gabel
Children's Defense Fund                         Gayle Holton Design
Marilee Chinnici-Zuercher                       GE Electric
Christian Family Fellowship                     George & Michelle Geissbuhler
Church Word Service                             Zona Glass
City of Columbus                                Herbert & Diane Glimcher
Clear Channel                                   Grange Insurance
COAAA                                           Greater Columbus Arts Council
Columbus Clippers                               Kenneth & Carolyn Hafner
Columbus Education Association                  John H. & Marilyn Hamilton
The Columbus Foundation                         Scott D. Holmes & Kimberly Hamilton
Columbus Health Department                      Vincent & Donna Hamparian
Columbus Public Schools                         Harmony Ball
Columbus Rotary                                 Gailmarie Harris
Columbus State Community College                Philip Hartmann
Columbus Zoo                                    Marcia Herrold
Connect Michigan                                Peter & Robin Hersha
Corporation for National Service                Thomas & Kristine Hess
COSI Columbus                                   Annette Hoelzer
CME Federal Credit Union                        Mike Hoffman
Kim Cocroft                                     Honda of America Manufacturing, Inc.

Huntington                              Joseph & Becky Patrick
Camille L. Jones                        Points of Light Foundation
JPMorgan Chase                          Anne Powell-Riley
Junior League of Columbus               Clark & Marilyn Pritchett
Beth Kohr                               Jean A. Reilly
George Kontogiannis                     Arlene B. Reitter
Michael & Lorie Krieger                 Georgeanne & Michael Reuter
Orie Kristel, PhD                       Lucinda Reynolds
Kroger                                  Deborah Rogner
Sandra K. Lafollette                    Richard L. & Ann L. Royer
Dao Hua Li & Pei Xian Wang              Mike Sams
Craig & Sally Lindberg                  Schottenstein Zox & Dunn
Live Nation                             Julie Shane
Paul Longenecker                        Marilyn Smith
Linda Lucks                             Karen Snyder, PhD
Roy Lydic                               Ron & Donna Solove
Barb Lyon                               Kerry Strayer, PhD
A.E. Wallace Maurer                     Deborah & Gregory Stype
Max & Erma's                            Marty Sweterlitsch, JD
Doug & Amy Mayr                         Gary Swisher
William McCulley                        Target
Chris McGovern                          Thrivent Financials
Joseph & Johanna Meara                  Beth Tikvah
Medco                                   Time Warner Cable
Medica Health                           Trinity United Methodist
Mentoring Center of Central Ohio        United Way of Central Ohio
Courtney Mignery                        United Way of Cincinnati
Brian K. & Amber L. Mikesell-Cub        Chris & Coreen Walker
 Scout Pack                             Kenneth Wallace
Terry & Martha Miller                   Anna Wang
Harry C. Moores Foundation              Washington Avenue United Methodist
Robin & Mike Moran                       Church
Craig H. Mosier II                      WBNS 10TV
Mowery, Wright, Wilford                 Alan & Beatrice Weiler
Sally K. Mowery                         Lila Weiler
Charles & Voande Nagel                  Westerville Area Resource Ministry
Nationwide Foundation                   Charles & Bernice White
Norman, Jones, Enlow & Co.              Chuck White
Northwest Church of the Nazarene        Danielle White
OCLC                                    Richard & Shyla Wilcox
OHIC Insurance                          Sabrina P. Wilford
Ohio Community Development              Dan Willis
Ohio Department of Health               Robert D. Willis
Ohio Emergency Management Agency        Kirshala Wright
Ohio Roller Girls                       Youth Volunteer Corp of America
Osteopathic Heritage Foundation         Frederick Ziegler
Panera Bread                            John & Linda Ziegler
Joseph Patchen                          Carol Zimmerman
FIRSTLINK 2006 BOARD OF TRUSTEES                                                                                    Nonprofit
Chris McGovern, President                                                                                          Organization
                                                                                                                   U.S. Postage
John Hamilton, Vice President                                                                                       PA I D
Joseph J. Patrick, Jr., Treasurer                                                                                 Columbus, OH
Kerry Strayer, Secretary                                                                                         Permit No. 1115

Kimberly Cocroft, Philip K. Hartmann, Michael J. Hoffman, Leon David
Kessel, Julie R. Kuhn, Roy Lydic, Courtney Mignery, Joseph M. Patchen,                  195 North Grant Avenue
Lucinda Reynolds, Julie A. Shane, Gary R. Swisher, Kenneth Wallace,                       Columbus, OH 43215
Chuck White, Rick Wilcox

Marilee Chinnici-Zuercher

FIRSTLINK's mission is to strengthen and enhance the quality of life in our
community by mobilizing volunteers and connecting people to critical
community resources.

195 North Grant Avenue, Columbus, OH 43215
(614) 221-6766
24-hour information: (614) 221-2255
Fax: (614) 224-6866

United Way of Central Ohio • ADAMH Board of Franklin County • Franklin County
Commissioners • City of Columbus • Corporation for National Service • Points of Light
Foundation & Volunteer Center National Network • Alliance of Information & Referral

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