Scottsdale Cares. Do You?
City utility bill donation program helps neighbors in need
At the time, he couldn’t sit still. He communicated physically, not verbally. He tried to run away several times each day. But staff at Cortney’s Place wasn’t giving up on Danny.
They embraced the challenge and kept up with his every move – and their persistence and hard work paid off.
Today, Danny talks and is blooming socially. He plays video games and eats meals with others, while also learning how to work and play independently.Best of all, Danny’s happy.
Cortney’s Place is one of a dozen agencies that receive funding from Scottsdale Cares, the city’s voluntary utility bill donation program. Without that money, Danny and others who share his challenges might not receive the help they need.
You can help Danny and many others by contributing to Scottsdale Cares. Simply pay the “grand total” on your Scottsdale utility bill, and $1 will be directed to the program. The city annually distributes that money to various agencies that, in turn, assist thousands of people. These agencies provide services like teen suicide prevention, utility payment assistance, job training for those with mental disabilities and youth mentoring.
Scottsdale Cares in July divvied $140,000 to 12 agencies. Unfortunately, demand is far beyond the program’s financial capacity. Twenty-seven agencies asked for a combined $475,000 – that’s more than triple the amount that was available. According to the city’s Community Assistance Manager Michelle Albanese, requests have grown but Scottsdale Cares funding has dropped more than 40 percent in six years.
Consider donating to Scottsdale Cares to assist people like Danny – and these others:
Emily is a Big Sister with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona. A shared love of art brought her together with Renatta, an elementary-school aged student. Their repertoire of activities expanded beyond the art world and a true friendship developed. The pair looks forward to playing board games, crafting holiday cards, discussing science and just hanging out together. To those considering becoming a Big Brother or Big Sister, Emily has this to say, “Just give it a try and quit pondering. It’s fun and is truly a doable commitment.” Emily says that being a Big Sister is her most rewarding activity – and she has a lot! Renatta is grateful and whole-heartedly agrees, “I love Emily to pieces!”
Lastly, meet Rich, Vicky and their 3-year-old daughter Lucy. They came to Family Promise after a job loss, compounded by mental health issues, led to them losing their home. Family Promise’s goal is to reduce homelessness by helping families attain self-sufficiency. The nonprofit provided a social worker to help the young family get back on their feet and lead them to a life of independence. From the start, the couple stood out. They sought help, worked with Family Promise and became self-reliant. Thanks to their new support system, Rich and Vicky quickly found jobs and a place to live. By the time they left Family Promise, staff witnessed improvements in their functioning as a family, their confidence level and their hope for the future. The family remains in contact and staff says “it’s always great to see and hear how the family continues to grow.”
While people like those highlighted above are getting assistance, many others aren’t. Your help is needed. Please don’t pass the buck. Donate one … to Scottsdale Cares.
There are several ways you can donate to Scottsdale Cares:
- Simply pay the “grand total” on your city utility bill or add $1 to the “total utility due/total current charges” and $1 will go toward Scottsdale Cares
- Send a check in any amount to the City of Scottsdale, c/o Scottsdale Cares, 7447 E. Indian School Road #300, Scottsdale AZ 85251
- Make sure that you designate “yes” on your auto-pay or sure-pay forms. Check or change your current designation by calling 480-312-7400.
- If you pay your bill online, please note that you can donate any amount.
Get more Scottsdale Cares information by calling the city’s Human Services Department at 480-312-2646.
2014/15 Scottsdale Cares funded agencies:
- Aid to Adoption of Special Kids
- Arizona Friends of Foster Children Foundation
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona
- Boys and Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale
- Community Bridges, Inc.
- Cortney’s Place
- Family Promise Greater Phoenix
- Homeward Bound
- Save the Family Foundation of Arizona
- Scottsdale Training and Rehabilitation Services (STARS)
- Teen Lifeline
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