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Recognizing the Impact of the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation

During the week of November 12-18, 2018, the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation and Regional Affiliates (PACF) will join more than 800 community foundations across America celebrating Community Foundation Week.  For nearly 30 years, the effort has raised awareness about the increasingly important role of these philanthropic organizations in fostering local collaboration and innovation to address persistent civic and economic challenges.

Community Foundation Week, created in 1989 by former president George H. W. Bush, recognizes the work of community foundations throughout America and their collaborative approach to working with the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to address community problems.

Community foundations impact lives, solve problems, and improve futures,” said Judy Sjostedt, PACF’s Executive Director.  As many residents grapple with limited resources and a growing need for services, we are more determined than ever to bring our community partners together to find innovative and effective solutions for some of our most challenging social problems here in the Mid-Ohio Valley region.”

Community foundations are independent, public entities that steward philanthropic resources from institutional and individual donors to local nonprofits, agencies, churches, civic groups, etc. that are the heart of strong, vibrant communities.   The local PACF works with individuals, families, businesses, and civic or nonprofit organizations to make a positive and permanent commitment for the future of our region. 

The PACF currently manages more than 350 charitable funds with nearly $43 million in assets and works in partnership with its local affiliates to provide leadership and develop philanthropic resources to meet the needs of an 11-county service area.  Last year, the PACF awarded $2.3 million in grants and scholarships for the benefit of that service area.  Since 1963, the PACF has helped local citizens support charitable needs and touch every aspect of life in the community in a variety of lasting ways. 

Sjostedt noted, “These grants and scholarships are made possible by individuals living right here in our communities.  This week and every day, the PACF celebrates the generosity of local people and the impact that their giving has on improving our Mid-Ohio Valley area’s quality of life.  With the year-end fast approaching, it’s a tremendous time for citizens to make an investment to advance their communities by supporting their local community foundation.”

To learn more about the PACF visit its website or stop by its office at 1620 Park Avenue in Parkersburg during regular business hours.

Project Yoga MOV Establishes Endowment Fund

Project Yoga MOV was founded in 2017 by the owners of Full Circle Yoga, Cheryl and Patrick McHugh with the mission of bringing the therapeutic benefits of yoga to the Parkersburg area for individuals who are underserved.  The all-volunteer organization consists of a Board of Directors, Executive Director, Program Manager, and trained yoga instructors. 

“Our clients are those who would not traditionally seek-out yoga,” said Cheryl McHugh, Project Yoga MOV’s Board Chair.  “There are so many benefits of yoga, both mentally and physically, and we want to expose individuals to those benefits.”

Currently, with the help certified and trained yoga instructors, Project Yoga MOV provides service to citizens in Wood, Pleasants, and Washington counties in the Mid-Ohio Valley region.  Through their work, the Mid-Ohio Fellowship Home, Wood County Senior Center, St. Mary’s Correctional Center, Parkersburg Correctional Center, Boys & Girls Club of Parkersburg, and area elementary, middle, and high schools have introduced yoga to their clients/students.  In addition to these sessions, Project Yoga MOV, with the help of the VET Center, has also introduced yoga to local Vietnam veterans.

“Our yoga instructors have completed 200+ hours of yoga training, in addition to a Trauma Sensitive training,” said Cheryl McHugh.  “We are not here to say what level is your trauma – trauma is trauma.   We are here to provide the benefits of yoga, to help with thought and emotional processing and to teach individuals to breath consciously and feel.   All of these elements together can make a positive difference for an individual.”

Steve Barnhart, Project Yoga MOV’s Veterans Project Manager, can personally speak to the therapeutic benefits of yoga.  A U.S. Army veteran, Barnhart said “I started yoga because my wife’s doctors wanted her to try yoga as part of her chronic illness therapy.  We started at a small studio where there were never more than three or four people in class.  Much to my surprise, yoga was helping me more than it was my wife.  Wanting to expand my practice, I found Full Circle Yoga online.  At first, I was intimidated because I didn’t look like anyone in the pictures online, but once I finally went to a class at Full Circle Yoga, I discovered the peaceful and non-judgmental people inside.  Yoga and Cheryl and Patrick helped me deal with long-standing PTSD/Moral Injury and have truly made a difference in my life.  Now I am advocating for others to attend sessions and helping other veterans experience the positive release that comes with yoga.” 

Every Monday at 6:00 p.m. Combat Vietnam veterans are invited to the VET Center in Parkersburg for a private group yoga session.  Additional veteran group sessions are being arranged.  To learn more, contact Project Yoga MOV. 

To solidify their commitment to the Mid-Ohio Valley region, Project Yoga MOV established an endowment fund with the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation that will forever provide operating support for the organization. 

“The Foundation has a respected reputation in our community and this new endowment fund will help ensure that our organization has annual funding to help us continue our mission,” said Patrick McHugh, Project Yoga MOV’s Executive Director.  “We encourage individuals who are interested in helping Project Yoga MOV with our mission to contact us to learn how they can get involved and make a difference in someone’s life.” 

Individuals who would like to learn more about Project Yoga MOV are encouraged to email Patrick McHugh.  Individuals wishing to donate to support the new Project Yoga MOV Endowment Fund can make their donation by sending a check (payable to PACF with the fund name in the memo line) to:  PACF, PO Box 1762, Parkersburg, WV 26102 or donate here.

Workshop on Nonprofit Lifecycles Offered November 1

Nonprofit organizations can learn how to strengthen their capacity today and plan for success tomorrow at the Nonprofit Lifecycles Workshop, November 1, from 12:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. at Ohio Valley University in Parkersburg. The workshop is sponsored by the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation and Regional Affiliates, Nonprofits LEAD, and the West Virginia Nonprofit Association (WVNPA) and will be led by Maria Fibiger, Certified Master Consultant of Nonprofit Lifecycles Institute and President/Senior Consultant of Three Dog Consulting.

Based on Susan Kenny Steven’s widely popular book, Nonprofit Lifecycles, this workshop will provide a practical way for nonprofits to think about strengthening their organizational capacity, no matter what their age or size. Using Lifecycles Stages to describe the predictable growing pains nonprofits experience at each stage of development, Fibiger will share concepts that are especially relevant to board members, executive staff, and other organization leaders. Nonprofits will learn how to self-assess their organization’s management, governance, financial resources, and administrative components as the vital support systems for their important mission and programs. 

Turnover of Board, executive staff, volunteers is an inevitable event (planned or emergent) in the Lifecycle of any organization, and nonprofits should prepare for these transitions with good succession planning. At the workshop, Fibiger will discuss fundamental pieces that every organization should have in place to make the transition easier, as well as barriers and challenges that may come up in any turnover scenario. This interactive workshop will explore a framework for succession planning, and will equip nonprofit leaders with real-world knowledge & tactics.

Cost to attend is $20 per person ($15 per person for WVNPA members). Organizations are encouraged to bring Board/staff teams to participate.

For registration information, click here or call Marian Clowes (304-428-4438) or Amy Elliott (740-376-4559).

 Registration deadline is October 25.

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PO Box 1762
1620 Park Ave.
Parkersburg, WV 26102-1762
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