Live United Stories

People just like you are making a difference every day for our friends and neighbors. Each of us has something to offer to make our community better. How do you?

Share Your LIVE UNITED Story

Less Talking, More Doing

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This action-oriented group of students is motivated by results, not meetings. As a result, Students for Sustainability has made a huge impact at Northwood University and in our community. The students rescue left-over food from the cafeteria and deliver it to a local homeless shelter each week. They have proudly distributed over 1,000 pounds of food that would have gone to waste.

Sharing Tree volunteers are incredible!

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We celebrate Trinity Lutheran volunteers Ron, daughter Bethany and granddaughter Madison. Three generations of a family who care deeply about our community. They give their time so others can feel the warmth of Christmas!

Cancer adversity inspired generosity.

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Surviving cancer inspired Darlene to help others. Every day she helps or is in the process of helping someone. The feeling of giving of yourself is amazing!

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Simple Gifts. Big Impact.

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Sharing Tree helps people know that someone out there loves them. Simple acts of kindness transform a women and her family’s Christmas.

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Share your swimming passion.

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Begin to Swim Program at Midland Community Center is a passion of Kali. She helped one small boy conquer his fear and showed him he can do anything.

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Instilling Scouting Values.

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The next business, science, political, educational and military leaders of our country will be the Scouts of today. Jake helps our Scouts and our future.

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Melina finds energy teaching Zumba.

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Melina loves teaching Zumba with it’s fun music and aerobic exercise. It is awesome!

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Tears of crisis turned to tears of joy.

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Wes witnesses customers going from despair to delight. He transforms lives and gives hope by repairing cars.

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We can do it together!

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Wally believes in Midland County and what we can do together. Each one of us can contribute to the purpose and good of the whole community.

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Young Leaders Have the Skill Set to Transform.

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Vic knows when Young Leaders come together they transform our community and world! The mission of Young Leaders United is to encourage the spirit of philanthropy and volunteerism among emerging community leaders in their 20s and 30s.

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Fostering New Hope.

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Carol is passionate about helping foster children. She has always wanted to be there for children without families and the forgotten kids.

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A Boy Scout break out.

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Rich saw the wonderful transformation in one young boy scout from shy to confident. Investing in our future is why Rich volunteers.

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Two happy years working at a restaurant.

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Louis always wanted a job but people thought perhaps he didn’t have the capacity to work. The Arnold Center helped him get a job in a restaurant. Louis works hard, loves it and the extra perks… free hamburgers.

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The song “Working On the Railroad”

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Being a person with a disability, Kevin got interested in volunteering at MCTV. He promotes, checks quality, sings as well as meets new people.

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Life is good!

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Joseph’s life has been transformed now that he doesn’t use drugs, tobacco or alcohol.

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Kids have a bright future.

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Jim volunteers his time on the Bullock Creek School Board so kids will have a brighter future. He is conscious of how decisions affect them. He gathers different perspectives from parents and other members which guides the Board’s views and conclusions.

Lend your voice for change.

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Support groups help Colleen battle cancer.

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Colleen has survived three cancer diagnoses. While receiving treatment, she started attending wellness activities and support groups at Cancer Services. That support and connection feeds her body and soul. She’s feeling the best she has in years.

Megan overcomes her limitations to teach kids healthy habits.

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Megan understands what it takes to overcome limitations. Legally blind herself, she teaches an exercise class at Midland Community Center for kids with disabilities. She inspires them to stretch their bodies along with their minds.

Carol and Diane reconnect through volunteering.

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Carol and Diane reconnected when they followed their hearts and began volunteering at Shelterhouse. They organize pantry items, stand by victims sides in court and provide clothing for women and their kids who escaped violence with nothing.

A positive role model can change a life.

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Karl knows how important it is for a teenager to have a positive adult role model. When his Little Brother was struggling with Spanish, Karl taught himself so he could help. He also spent time working on cars, showing his Little Brother how to change a tire, while changing his life.

Girl Scouts give back.

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When a Girl Scout Troop in Bullock Creek learned their classmate Katie had been diagnosed with cancer, they stepped up to help. They collected gas cards, antibacterial wipes and games while creating a handprint rainbow to remind Katie she’s not alone.

A heart to help.

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Growing up in a family that gives back, Owen had big plans for his eighth birthday party. Instead of presents for him, Owen’s  guests brought toys and food for children in need. For Owen, delivering the gifts to help families at West Midland Family Center was the best birthday present of all.

Chuck feeds the homeless with love.

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Growing up in the family pizza business, Chuck’s parents taught him the importance of giving back. He and his staff carry on that tradition by feeding the hungry through Little Caesars’ mobile Love Kitchen. The residents of The Open Door enjoyed hot pizza for lunch and Chuck was able to give comfort and care.

Erick ROCKS a renovation.

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As a parent to three boys, Erick knows what kids need. He and the teen construction apprentices he mentors brought a hip, new look to The ROCK Youth Center during a recent remodel. The construction students gained real life work experience and The ROCK students now enjoy a state-of-the-art homework hang-out.

Kim Quit Smoking for her Kids

Determined that her children wouldn’t be burdened with caring for a parent dying of lung disease like she was, Kim was motivated to quit smoking. With the help of Cancer Services caring staff and quit smoking program, this mom was ready to kick the habit. Now smoke-free Kim feels she is a good example for her family and for all the children she serves.

Tim’s sobriety encourages many

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Tim’s life had become unmanageable due to alcoholism when he entered Ten Sixteen Recovery Network. Sober for many years, he gave back by serving as their board chair. He now works for Ten Sixteen and is launching a housing and employment program to help others rebuild their lives.

A touchdown for our community

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The Northwood University Football team recently volunteered a Saturday at Shelterhouse to create a haven for victims of abuse. They raked, mulched around the playground and planted flowers to create a beautiful place to heal.

Josh is building the next generation

A life of rebellion and recklessness became one centered on teamwork and service when Josh joined the Boy Scouts Venturing program in high school. This once troubled boy has transformed into a caring Eagle Scout, who now guides other young men in developing character and service to others.

Chili With a Purpose

The folks at Dow Solar (aka team “Cheap Gas”) rose to the top at this year’s Dow Chemical Chili Cook-off. This annual event marks the start of their United Way campaign, with dozens of teams competing for bragging rights.

Tina assists in financial protection

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Tina is a generous donor who also lends her time and expertise. Her skills as a CPA ensure that Safe and Sound Child Advocacy Center stays in good financial shape, so that the young victims of abuse receive the care and dignity they so desperately deserve.

Nancy’s journey to health

Nancy needed help with managing her money and budgeting. The Arc ensured she stayed in her home and supported Nancy through a three year wait for a kidney transplant. Now recovering, she is happy to help others through the People First program.

Dirk makes an impact on the mat

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As a parent himself, Dirk jumped at the opportunity to instill character, discipline and team building in the kids of Coleman. By launching the wrestling program at Railway Family Center, he changed the lives of thirty kids—and that was just year one.

Ralph achieved his dream

College was an impossible dream until Ralph joined West Midland Family Center’s Dow College Opportunity program as an 8th grader. Through mentorship, volunteering and campus visits, the dream became a reality for this first-generation college student. As a professor and PhD, Ralph now inspires others to pursue their dreams.

The young at heart give back

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Bill and Maxine have logged almost 1,000 volunteer hours reaching out to folks at Senior Services. Maxine lovingly serves as a friendly visitor, spending time listening, laughing and reminiscing. Her husband, Bill, is a volunteer driver, making even a trip to the doctor a special event.

Ryan breaks through his barriers

Ryan is not held back by his limitations. He is known for his creative solutions at the Arnold Center and in the community he calls home. Recently elected as the president of the Kiwanis Aktion Club, he and other people with disabilities raise money to provide care kits for those impacted by natural disasters.

Michelle opens her heart and home

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Michelle is a Young Leader with a big dream. She recognizes that every child needs to feel loved, opening her home and heart to foster children. Now adopted, Corinne simply knows her as “Mom.”

Owen gears up for Kindergarten

Owen suffers from severe hearing loss and was struggling with fitting in. The loving staff at North Midland Family Center found ways to understand him and more importantly, taught him how to communicate with kids his age. Armed with friends and a new-found confidence, Owen is excited and ready for Kindergarten.

Will returns the favor

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After losing his job, Will found himself depending on the kindness of others. Now back on his feet, he puts his faith into action by stocking pantry shelves at The Salvation Army. His efforts help feed families in need and offer hope for a brighter tomorrow.

Cancer touches home with Cathy

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Cathy has donated a part of her paycheck to United Way since joining Dow. Her commitment became personal when her mother began treatment for colon cancer and needed help. Cancer Services was there with transportation for chemo, loving support and a beautiful wig.