Capital Project Fundraiser Blueprint by uuh36520

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									                                SPECIAL PROJECT AWARD NOMINATION FORM

    Name of Community: Dawson County         Population: 24,642
   Name of Project: Dawson – Gosper WWII Hero Flight
    Project Contact Person: Deb Jensen, Dawson Area Development
    Day Phone: 308-784-3902       Eve Phone: 308-325-2965       E-Mail: djdad@cozadtel.net
   Category : Leadership Development
    Subcategory: Volunteer and Leadership Development
    Date Project Begun (mo./yr.) October 2008 Date Completed (mo./yr.) June 2009
   Is the project Annual/Ongoing __No_______
   Volunteer Hours __2,000__ Number of Volunteers __50__

1. Project Description:
   This project took 30 World War II veterans, escorts, other sponsors, and a nurse to Washington DC to tour
   the memorials. On the Dawson-Gosper County flight there were 26 area veterans, and since there were
   others that wanted to go, 4 Dawson-Gosper veterans were sent on the Buffalo County flight. The
   volunteers that made this trip possible were the 2008-09 members of the Dawson Area Development
   (DAD) Leadership Class. When presented with project choices in September 2008, this project, honoring
   the area WWII veterans, was the one they chose.

 1. Planning and Implementation of the Project:

    a. Methods used to plan and implement:
       In planning the project, the class studied the blueprint used in prior flights by Buffalo County. They
       decided since there were 19 class members, a committee system would work well for this project.
       They named the committees and gave each class member a chance to choose which committee they
       would like to work on. After that, the entire class voted on one member to be chairman of the
       overall project.
    b. How the project relates to overall goals:
       This project related well to the over-all goals of the DAD organization. It showed each class member
       how individually they can volunteer to “make a difference” and “accomplish a goal by working
       together”. With the use of different committees to accomplish various aspects of the project, each
       class member had a chance to hone his/her strengths of leadership.
    c. How the project was identified as a priority for the area:
       This type of project had been done in the neighboring county of Buffalo, and many of the Dawson
       and Gosper county veterans had a strong desire to travel on a Hero Flight such as their project was.
       When the news of the project was broadcast by the media, many applications were received from
       area veterans wishing to chosen to go. The Leadership class felt that given the age of the area WWII
       veterans, time was of the essence in finding a way to honor them with a chance to visit the war
       memorials.

 2. Volunteer Involvement in Planning and Implementing the Project:

    a. How responsibilities were delegated among the volunteers:
       As mentioned previously, the Leadership class decided to attack the large project using the
       committee approach. After determining all aspects of the project, it was decided what tasks needed
       to be accomplished. Six committees were established. Class members were given the opportunity to
       sign up for whatever committee most interested them and where their talents lay to help them
       accomplish that particular task. A leadership quality that was enforced during the project was the
       ability of class members to speak before groups—telling others about the project strengthened their
       confidence levels of public speaking.

   b. How Volunteers were recruited:
      The main volunteers in this project were the members of the 2008-09 Dawson Area Development
      Leadership class. So, they were not recruited. But, during the outreach of fundraising, many more
      volunteers came to the front lines by the Leadership class doing the recruitment. The Associates of
      the local Wal- Mart Supercenter in Lexington, Nebraska, went above and beyond their pledge of
      fundraising for the project. They spearheaded a fundraising event and provided all the food. When
      food was left over, they sold it to other associates and gave those monies to the effort. Later, when
      the Associates won an award from corporate Wal-Mart, they donated that money to the Hero Flight
      project. Their store also donated the big screen TV for raffle. Other groups came forward, also. The
      employees of the City of Lexington helped serve one of the fundraisers. Heartland Military Museum
      in Lexington volunteers helped by providing their museum as the site for a fundraiser and also the
      send-off celebration, working along the Leadership class to ensure success. Various organizations
      such as the Dawson County Cattlemen and the local Pork Producers both furnished meat for various
      fundraising meals. Volunteers who had experience and know-how in organizing a fun-run helped
      with that activity in Gothenburg. At the sendoff, the Lexington football team helped the veterans
      load the bus by carrying their luggage, etc. Honor guards and local VFW and American Legion
      representatives presented the flags at the sendoff. The Patriot riders gave the WWII veterans the
      final tribute by escorting the bus carrying the group through Lexington, Cozad, and Gothenburg.

3. Identify Project Outcomes:

       a. What was the intended community change as a result of the project?
          The intention of the project was not so much a change—as it was a labor of love and honor for
          the World War II veterans in Dawson and Gosper counties. This was an area wide effort—as
          evidenced by the inclusion of two counties working together to send their World War II veterans
          to view the memorials built in their honor in Washington, DC.
       b. Description of community wide support of the project: Community wide support of this project
          was tremendous. Fund raising activities were held in Lexington, Cozad, and Gothenburg,
          sometimes more than once, and not only did the committee work hard on these activities, they
          were well supported by the public. People came to enjoy food, fellowship, and donate to send
          these heroes to Washington DC. Special support came from the associates of the Lexington
          Super Wal-Mart store and volunteers at the Heartland Military Museum. These two groups
          helped immensely. The Wal-Mart associates provided food for a fundraiser, purchased the
          leftover food themselves, and then donated a monetary award they won to the project. The
          volunteers of the Heartland Military opened their facility twice for this project. The first time
          was a very successful fundraising function, and the second time the Museum was the sight of the
          emotional send off of the vets on the trip.
       c. Description of how Project impacted the Community: This project impacted a large portion of
          the community, either by the veterans that went on the trip, their escorts (which were family
          members), their families, volunteers that contributed time and money, and lastly the Leadership
          Class that planned, coordinated, and obtained all the funding. It was a large undertaking that
          took many hands, minds, and dollars to accomplish. The whole area was impacted by the
          constant visual reminders through the media. One county newspaper has featured one the
          veterans every week in their publication with a front page personal story and pictures. The
          grateful recognition of the WWII vets by the whole area and the humble response from the
          veterans themselves was a joy to watch unfold. At the send off party, from which the veterans
          and their escorts left for Washington DC, there were so many people that the Heartland
           Museum was packed to capacity and the volunteers ran out of food. Such an overwhelming
           response from the public to honor these deserving men was unbelievable.

4. Description of how resources were identified and used to implement the project:

       a. Monetary: The Leadership class worked together to identify how much funding would be
          needed to send 25 veterans, their escorts, a nurse, one media person, and two sponsors on the
          Hero Flight to Washington, DC. They were in contact with a neighboring county that has
          previously sent their veterans on such a trip. Two grants were applied for, and one was received
          from the Clarcor Foundation. Otherwise, all the fundraising was accomplished by donations of
          the community. Most of these donations were small, and it seemed as if it took a long time to
          accumulate the funds needed, but in reality over the 240 days of the project, $270 per day was
          raised in donations. The Class planned and executed fundraisers in Lexington, Cozad, and
          Gothenburg. They also composed a letter and sent to all chamber members in all three towns,
          along with other area businesses requesting donations to this project. Many individuals and
          businesses stepped up the plate and donated generously to help this project be successful.
       b. Materials and supplies: Almost ALL of the food used at the fundraisers was donated. At one
          fundraiser, the Wal-Mart associates and City of Lexington employees donated food. The local
          Lexington Wal-Mart also provided a big screen TV that was raffled. At the Cozad fundraiser the
          Dawson County Cattleman furnished all the meat, and in Gothenburg the Pork Producers
          donated meat. At other fundraisers and at the send-off celebration, local individuals provided
          much of the food. The Leadership class members also provided food for these occasions.
          Otherwise, supplies had to be purchased for the meals, sometimes these were donated, but if
          not, the cost was deducted from the fundraising amounts.
       c. Labor: In all cases, all labor was donated. The largest share of the labor was performed by the
          Leadership Class and their families, but at various times and at different functions the labor was
          performed by community residents. The support for this project was so abundant that
          volunteers were easily found. Some professional services, such as signs and advertising, were
          given as in-kind donations.

5. What aspects of the project were unique or creative?

           The uniqueness of this project was that a Leadership class researched, planned, and funded such
           a large project of this nature by themselves. From a core group of 19, they recruited volunteers
           to join in the accomplishment of the project. At the outset, the goal was to send 25 veterans,
           their escorts, a nurse, a media contact, and two sponsors on the trip. In the end, this Leadership
           class was able to send 30 veterans and the rest of the group to the nation’s capital. AND, since
           there were a small amount of funds left at the end of the project, they decided to donate those
           to a Hero Flight out of Phelps County, Nebraska, to help defray expenses for two more Dawson
           County veterans. Another unique aspect of this flight was the fact it combined the efforts and
           resources of two counties in the area—namely Dawson and Gosper county. Gosper county was
           represented in the Dawson Area Development Leadership class with a class member, and he was
           very instrumental in gaining financial support and additional veterans from the Gosper county
           region. Since one of the major goals of the Dawson Area Development Leadership program is to
           train and grow volunteers, this project was a perfect venue to use. It brought the class together
           to work in committees, taught them to look for resources beyond their immediate scope, and
           gave them an intense satisfaction in a job WELL DONE.
                               A R E A
                                         DAWSON
                                             D E V E L O P M E N T
                               communities growing together




  Dawson/Gosper Hero Flight Send Off
  Heroes Ready for D.C.
by David Penner - Lexington Clipper Herald
Published: Friday, June 5, 2009 3:34 PM CDT

LEXINGTON – There was not a dry eye in the house as
loved ones from across Dawson and Gosper counties
saw their ‘Heroes’ board a bus to Denver, Thursday
night. World War II veterans were given a hero’s send-
off at the Heartland Museum of Military Vehicles for the
Dawson and Gosper County Hero Flight.

The veterans, 26 in all, and their escorts drove to
Denver then took a plane to Washington, D.C., where
they will view the National WWII Monument and tour the
nation’s capital. All of the veterans were excited to be
going on the trip. Robert Salisbury gave an emphatic
answer when asked if he was ready. “Of course!” he
said.

Dick Pierce, who helped the Dawson Area
Development Leadership class start the project, and
also was the organizer for the Buffalo County Hero
Flight, told the veterans that his hat was off to them.
“We owe an awful lot to you,” he said. “You are the
reason we’re doing what we do.”

Pierce announced the names of the men who will
present the wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
They were: Dean Weissert, Vernon Block, Merle
Glassmeyer and Robert McTygue. “Presidents, heads
of state and prime ministers have all had the same
honor,” Pierce explained, “and it means nothing unless
you are the ones doing it.”

State Sen. John Wightman had trouble holding back
his tears while thanking the veterans. “Thank you,” he
said. “All of us are benefitting from what you did for
us. Who knows where this world would be if it was not
for what you did for us?” Wightman paused to gather
his thoughts, then continued. “On behalf of all of us
here, we offer you our thanks,” he said. “Thank you
belatedly.”

As tears started to rolled down the faces of friends and
family, the crowd stood and gave a standing ovation to
the brave men who put their lives on the line so many
years ago.

Our heroes were sent off in style.




                                                                      ELWOOD           mUSTANG
                                                                                                 Sumner - Eddyville - Miller




                            GOTHENBURG
                                                           hay days        NEBRASKA
                                                                                        c          OUNTRY
                                     2006                              j u n e   2 0 0 9   •   3 4 t h            i s s u e
DAWSONGOSPER
HEROFLIGHT

  June 2009




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