YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — The 2022 WRTA Holidays Lights Campaign has chosen a dozen local organizations for their efforts to “light up the Valley” this year.
The Western Reserve Transit Authority (WRTA), along with sponsors First National Bank and WKBN 27, honored the selected organizations at a kickoff event Tuesday at Concept Studio in downtown Youngstown.
The list was narrowed from 50 submissions for the third installment of this annual campaign.
The spotlighted groups will be featured on TV, social media and signage on WRTA buses through the end of the year. A drawing will take place at the event to determine the organization that will win a $3,000 TV advertising campaign.
Western Reserve Transit Authority selected the 12 organizations from more than 50 submitted nominations.
“These 12 stood because they just kind of provided a good, benefit the community, good connection to the community and help the community out in their times of need,” said Dean Harris of WRTA.
The 2022 WRTA Holiday Lights featured organizations are as follows:
- Yellow Brick Place — The nonprofit organization in Northeast Ohio is dedicated to proving non-medical support to those who have or know someone who has cancer. Its purpose is “to nourish and comfort the mind, body and spirit during the fight” while providing a “hopeful environment for patients, families and caregivers.” Its services are free.
- Youngstown Blue Coats — Under the motto “In America, nobody should freeze to death,” the group provides coats, shoes and warm clothes to veterans and those who are homeless. Last year, it served 693 veterans, 1,229 men, 663 women and 173 children.
- Glenwood Grounds — The nonprofit coffee shop and café, located in the “Fosterville” neighborhood of Youngstown, is staffed with volunteers.
- The Bummer Fund — The group provides financial support to responsible pet owners in times of pet medical crises or emergencies. The grants are provided when medical costs “threaten to stand in the way of appropriate treatment for a beloved family pet.”
- National Alliance on Mental Illness of the Mahoning Valley — The organization provides support, advocacy and education to individuals and families dealing with mental illness. It is working to build recovery and stability.
- Cadence Care Network — It provides a “continuum of outcome-focused and family-centered treatment services” to help those in the area “live their best possible life.” It offers foster care, as well as behavioral health treatment, to children, teenagers and adults.
- Gateways to Better Living Gateways — The nonprofit agency provides home care to individuals with developmental disabilities. Its staff works with family members, guardians and other providers to help each person achieve their personal goals and build skills for greater independence.
- Jewish Family and Community Services — It provides services — including educational support and assistance — to those facing difficult life decisions, members of the aging community, those with mental health disorders and those in need of developmental support. It also provides home-delivered meals and outreach services.
- Alta Care Group — The nonprofit specializes in the treatment of child and adolescent behavioral health. It is the federal grantee for the City of Youngstown and Mahoning County’s Head Start/Early Head Start program.
- Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corp. — The citywide neighborhood planning and development organization runs under the mission to stabilize and revitalize Youngstown neighborhoods. Since 2010, it has leveraged over $70 million in reinvestment in the city’s neighborhoods.
- YoFresh Foods — The small business partners with other local nonprofits to put “a fresh look” into feeding people in the Mahoning Valley. It got its start in 2019 in the Common Wealth Kitchen Incubator.
- Boys and Girls Club of Youngstown — The club provides children ages 6 to 18 a safe place out-of-school throughout the year. It provides free, healthy meals and snacks, as well as education and life skills education.