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Stayin’ Afloat – raises awareness about suicide

Posted on 6/28/2007 9:40:19 AM

Police Corporal Chris Krueger is dedicated to preventing suicide.  He understands first hand the devastation and loss that being a survivor brings; his sister, Amy Elaine Krueger took her life three years ago.

Chris launched his Stayin’ Afloat event last year in an effort to raise awareness and prevent suicides.  The proceeds from the event benefit the Suicide Prevention Council and Ryan’s Place.


 “If this event prevents one tragedy like that, and saves survivors all that pain, that’s my goal in having this,” Krueger said in a South Bend Tribune interview. 


This year, Stayin Afloat will be held at Seitz Park on the East Race on Saturday, July 7th.  Events begin at 8 a.m. and last until 9:30 p.m. There is something for everyone at this year’s event:  an awareness walk, pancake breakfast, music, more food, a bench press and strong man competition, raft races and more! 

To read more about Stayin’ Afloat and see the event schedule, click on this South Bend Tribune Link.


As a suicide survivor myself, I’d like to thank Chris personally for all he has done on behalf of all who suffer the loss of a loved one due to suicide. 

Thanks Chris,



211 Call Center

Posted on 6/27/2007 10:59:58 AM

211 call center

Thank you to my new friends at the United Way's 211 Call Center!

I spent some time this morning meeting with the lovely folks at the 211 Call Center.  It was fascinating to see the team in action; fielding calls from all over St. Joseph County (they also serve Marshall County.)   

Their data base of information is extensive and is updated often as agencies’ programs are added or dropped.  Their database is searchable and very efficient.  A caller is greeted by a friendly staff person who walks them through their needs.  Need help finding a job – they got you covered!  Need to know where the nearest food pantry is?  They can help you there too!  Have a medical question?   They’ll refer you to the proper channels.  Utility assistance, food programs, diapers?  They will provide you contact names and numbers of the agencies that provide the services you need. 

Unlike the Make a Difference Michiana web site, where visitors can look for services, donation ideas, volunteer opportunities, nonprofit events, etc, on their own … the 211 Call Center provides callers with that all-important human interaction to navigate through the myriad of social service agencies to find the help they need. 

Thanks Dave and Barb for your time this morning.  I applaud your team’s work serving the community!



Roofsit 2007

Posted on 6/25/2007 9:03:43 AM

Congratulations U93 and Martins for another Successful Roofsit!


For eleven years, the morning DJs at U93 have spent a week on the roof to raise awareness and money for the prevention of Child Abuse.   This year was no exception. Last week, on the corner of State Road 23 and Ironwood, the U93 morning crew could be found on the roof of Martin's Super Market - along with hundreds of their friends who stopped by to tell their stories, bring contributions,  or just have a good time!

Since its inception, Roofsit has raised over $1 million.  Funds raised stay in the local community supporting nonprofit agencies that provide services to the abused in St. Joseph, Elkhart, LaPorte Counties in Indiana and Cass and Berrien Counties in Michigan.

You can still make a donation to support Roofsit at:  


Americans Set Charitable Giving Record

Posted on 6/25/2007 8:47:31 AM

According to the Associated Press, Americans set a new charitable giving record in 2006 - donating nearly $300 billion to charity.  The findings were reported in the Indiana University's Center for Philanthropy annual Giving USA report which was published this week. 

Individuals gave over 75% of the total, and it was also noted in the report that about 65% of American households with incomes less than $100,000 give to charity! 

Read more about the report at:  

My kind of video game!

Posted on 6/18/2007 9:37:52 AM

When my kids were little, they used to try to get me to play their Nintendo games with them.  I was embarrassingly awful at these games. I always got dizzy when playing Mario Kart!!   And I’m not a big fan of all the violence that many video games expose our children to…

But over the weekend, I read about a new video game – one that encourages philanthropy in youth.  It’s called Karma Tycoon, and you can read all about it at the MSNBC’s Give and Take web site,   I’ve included some excerpts from the story below:

According to the MSNBC report, the idea behind Karma Tycoon was to put a twist on popular video and computer games in which players try to maximize profit in order to amass wealth.

“Why not create a game that maximizes karma in order to make the world a better place?” Aria Finger, who is in charge of building corporate partnerships for Do Something, recalls of the brainstorming that led to the game.

Teenager Nikki Mayer, an avid player, says that there is keen demand for entertainment with an optimistic message. “Not all teenagers are really interested in killing people or racing cars,” she says. “It’s like, there are some of us out there that really do want to engage in positive games and actually learn things that would help us later on in actual life.”

Players can pick the type of nonprofit they would like to administer, such as an animal shelter or a homeless shelter, and establish their virtual organization in one of 12 major U.S. cities.

Kimberly Davis, president of the JP Morgan Chase Foundation, says that in addition to generating interest in charitable deeds, the game helps player become money-wise.

“The game sort of sneaks up on you, and I think that’s the way it has to become intuitive for kids,” she says. “They don’t realize that by playing this game that they are doing math and setting up budgets.”

Congratulations Graduates!!

Posted on 6/3/2007 8:56:24 PM

May and June are busy months for graduations from High School and from College.  If you are a graduate, you can probably think of teachers, friends, and mentors who helped you along the way.  Take a minute in the next week and thank them for the contribution they made to your success.  And don’t forget to count your blessings!


What would your life be like if you hadn’t graduated?  What would your life be like if you couldn’t read?  What would your life be like if you didn’t have parents, teachers or mentors encouraging you to be ‘whatever you’d like to be’.


And after you’ve thought about that awhile, think about how YOU can help to mentor a child, or teach them to read, or be a role model.  Volunteer your time to one of the many nonprofit organizations that support youth and education.  I’ll help get you started by providing the list below.  It is in no way a complete list, but it is a start.  Encourage success in others, volunteer to help today!


Big Brothers Big Sisters

Boy Scouts

Girl Scouts

Boys and Girls Club

Partner Up

Mentoring Dream Team

Literacy Council

The list goes on and on….