Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Local News

January 2, 2013

We Care nets over $400,000 in 2012

Officials say thousands of volunteers made fundraising a success

On the last day of 2012, the bank accounts at the local nonprofit We Care were completely penniless. The organization was broke — in the best way possible.

Throughout the last year, We Care — with the help of thousands of volunteers — raised $412,495 through annual fundraisers like the telethon auction and trim-a-tree festival.

And by the end of December, all that money had been donated to five local nonprofits to help beef up their charitable impact in the community.

“We’re just thrilled the community always comes through,” said Becky Varnell, president of the We Care board of directors. “It’s always been about giving back to the community. That’s been the driving force behind We Care from the beginning.”

And giving back to the community in 2012 meant this: $105,000 to the Salvation Army, Goodfellows and Kokomo Rescue Mission; $85,000 to Bona Vista; and $10,000 to the Mental Health Association. That’s the same amount We Care was able to donate to the organizations in 2011.

“We’re grateful for this money,” said Brianne Boruff, vice president of development and vocation services at Bona Vista. She said the group has received money from We Care since 1997. “We rely on it on an annual basis, and without it, we wouldn’t be able to affect the lives of the individuals we care for.”

In addition to the donations, $2,495 was placed in the We Care Hope Trust Fund, which provides needed financial support to the We Care recipient organizations on a perpetual basis. Varnell said there’s currently more than $2 million in the fund.

Despite fundraising efforts, donations were down by about $18,000 from 2011, but Varnell said it wasn’t much of a concern.

“We never ponder on that,” she said, noting We Care never sets a fundraising goal. “We’re always happy with what we get. It’s exciting and fun to go over what you got last year, but the main thing is to give what we need to give to these five organizations.”

The We Care coffers may be empty now, but Varnell said the group is already brainstorming new ways to replenish its funds this year to once again donate to organizations at the end of 2013.

“We’re trying to look into new ideas to keep people interested and keep donations coming into We Care,” she said. “You want to stimulate people and try different things, but the bottom line will be exactly the same — to help the community.”

And Boruff said that’s what makes the organization such a unique fixture in Kokomo.

“You don’t find groups like We Care in too many communities,” she said. “It’s an origination that truly exists to help and serve the community.”

By the numbers:

Event/donor, Total

40th annual WWKI We Care telethon, $216,448.05

Clean-up auction, $20,500

Wyant’s We Care Park, $75,000

Trim-A-Tree Festival, $53,653.99

Bar Wars, $9,935.58


Recipient ,Total

Salvation Army, $105,000

Goodfellows, $105,000

Kokomo Rescue Mission, $105,000

Bona Vista, $85,000

Mental Health Association, $10,000

Carson Gerber is a Kokomo Tribune reporter. He may be reached by phone at 765-854-6739, or by email at carson.gerber@kokomotribune.com.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • NWS - KT082314 - Gaming revenues - PIC 1 Gaming revenues rush over border as Illinois expands slots INDIANAPOLIS – Beer and barbecue aren’t the only draws to Daddy-O’s Bar & Grill in the small town of Paris, Illinois, 15 miles from the Indiana border. The prospect of winning pulls in customers, as well.Since the neighborhood bar installed five vide

    August 23, 2014 4 Photos

  • U.S. 31 lane closure Monday The Indiana Department of Transportation will close the northbound right lane of U.S. 31 from the S.R. 931 flyover bridge at mile marker 156.0 north one-half mile to the 156.5 mile marker on Monday. Construction activities will begin at 7:30 a.m. The

    August 23, 2014

  • Camper rally 01 Dozens visit Peru for first vintage camper rally PERU — Mike Blackowiak said he’s used to creating some buzz when he pulls into a campground. But, then again, turning heads is one of the perks of owning an old-school 1963 Cree camper like his. “New campers — yeah, they’re nice, but you pull into a

    August 22, 2014 3 Photos

  • Floodgate trouble drops Lake Shafer by 20 inches A malfunction at a northern Indiana reservoir's dam has dropped the popular lake nearly 20 inches below its normal water level.

    August 22, 2014

  • Serena Youth Center seeking donations to furnish house The Serena Youth Center is looking for area businesses, churches and individuals to help furnish the center for the young women who will be living there. Kokomo’s first center for young women, ages 18 to 25, will soon open its doors, and the house on

    August 22, 2014

  • Water Color Class 06 Visual arts classes inspire adults to be creative Editor's note: This is one of several stories that will be published Sunday about how various groups are sharing their artistic talents with others. Eighty-six-year-old Dixie Bennett walked around her makeshift classroom inside Artworks Gallery Thurs

    August 22, 2014 3 Photos

  • Driver in Thursday crash cited for six traffic violations Kokomo police gave the driver of the jeep involved in Thursday afternoon’s crash on North Ohio Street six citations, including driving with a suspended driver’s license.

    August 22, 2014

  • 8 inches of overnight rain floods part of Indiana INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Heavy rains that dumped more than half a foot of rain overnight in some places triggered widespread flooding Friday in some central and northern Indiana counties. State police closed a section of Interstate 69 in both directions

    August 22, 2014

  • Purdue Security Video Purdue posts disputed video of photographer online

    Purdue University has posted online a surveillance video that college newspaper editors say shows a staff photographer being roughed up by police near where a student had been fatally shot and stabbed. Purdue posted the vi

    August 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sobriety checkpoints planned for today in Kokomo The Howard County Sheriff Department announced deputies will conduct a multi-jurisdictional enforcement checkpoint targeting impaired drivers in Howard County today. Officers from the Kokomo Police Department and troopers from the Indiana State Polic

    August 22, 2014

Latest news
Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Furry Roommates: Dorms Allowing Cats and Dogs Chase Rice Defends Bro-Country 'Jersey Shore Massacre' Pokes Fun at MTV Series Raw: Wash. Mudslides Close Roads, Trap Motorists DC's Godfather of Go-Go Honored Ukraine Calls Russian Convoy a 'direct Invasion' Girl Meets Her 'one in the World' Match Coal Gas Boom in China Holds Climate Risks Japan Landslide Rescuers Struggle in Heavy Rain Raw: Severe Floods, Fire Wrecks Indiana Homes Endangered Red Wolves Face Uncertain Future Raw: Russian Aid Convoy Arrives in Ukraine Okla. Policeman Accused of Sex Assaults on Duty Dominican Republic Bans Miley Cyrus Concert Raw: Israeli Air Strike in Gaza Raw: Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in Malaysia Attorney: Utah Eatery Had Other Chemical Burn

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.