Bremer boosts iEmpower plan

The Otto Bremer Foundation has awarded Sherburne County Area United Way with a $35,770 grant, funding the iEmpower youth program for the 2013-2014 school year.

As part of iEmpower, the local United Way organization has 20 groups in 14 schools within Elk River Area Schools as well as Big Lake and Princeton schools. IEmpower is for youth in grades K-12 who are invited by school faculty and staff to the program.

Submitted photo   Kathy Grochow and Matt Laubach from the Otto Bremer Foundation presented a check for the grant to Joy Nadeau, Executive Director of Sherburne County Area United Way with United Way board members Annette Eckman, Leanne Miller, Aaron Bowman, Kary Tillmann and Shannon Lechtenberg in attendance.

Submitted photo
Kathy Grochow and Matt Laubach from the Otto Bremer Foundation presented a check for the grant to Joy Nadeau, Executive Director of Sherburne County Area United Way with United Way board members Annette Eckman, Leanne Miller, Aaron Bowman, Kary Tillmann and Shannon Lechtenberg in attendance.

Youth who participate in iEmpower are not at-risk students and are not already receiving services from the school. The nonprofit hires qualified facilitators to lead participants in activities and discussion to build their self-reliance skills, communication skills and self-confidence.

Youth who participate in iEmpower receive a boost during their school week and have a place to connect with their peers and share their feelings and thoughts with the group. The iEmpower youth program is offered at no cost for participants due to support through grants and sponsorships.

The Otto Bremer Foundation owns 92 percent of Bremer Bank, and a large portion of bank profit is invested in local communities through grants and program-related investments. This May the Otto Bremer Foundation awarded 86 grants totaling $5,324,402, one of which was for the iEmpower youth program through the local United Way group.

The Sherburne County Area United Way serves Big Lake, Elk River, Otsego, Princeton, Santiago and Zimmerman by focusing on community needs within the focus areas of education, income and health.

“We strengthen local agencies through our annual grant program,” said Joy Nadeau, the exectuvie director of the local United Way. “We work with youth to create long-lasting changes through our iEmpower youth program.”

For more info, visit www.shercounitedway.org or call 763-633-5886.

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