Sentry Insurance Foundation Donates $50,000 to United Way of Wayne County for Coronavirus Relief Support Community-focused donations totaling more than $1 million across the country seek to make a direct impact
The Sentry Insurance Foundation announced today it is donating$50,000 to United Way of Wayne County in Goldsboro, N.C., as part of a $1.07 million commitment to organizations across the country for coronavirus relief support. The mutual insurer’s efforts are focused on making a direct impact at the community level, with donations to local United Way organizations across the country, as well as making contributions in honor of customers who have adjusted their operations in response to the changing needs of the country.
“At Sentry, we’re committed to helping those we serve get through this very difficult time,” said Pete McPartland, chairman of the board, president, and CEO of Sentry and chairman of the Sentry Foundation. “We also understand help is needed at the heart of our communities. By partnering with local
organizations—from United Way to other community groups—we hope to lift up our communities and work together to overcome the obstacles we face.”
A longtime supporter of United Way, the Foundation’s donation to United Way of Wayne County is one of 15 donations to local United Way organizations across the country where Sentry employees live and work, as well as Maui, the home of the Sentry Tournament of Champions. An additional matching program encourages employees to join the company in supporting their communities.
In the last few weeks, United Way of Wayne County has seen a huge increase in calls from people looking for food, financial assistance, and housing. They’re dedicated to coordinating their vast network of resources and connecting as many people as they can to assistance. We’re grateful for Sentry’s continued support as we face this extraordinary hardship,” said Sherry Archibald, United Way of Wayne County. “Year after year, Sentry has found ways to engage their employees in support of their community and matching it for a bigger impact; it is not a surprise that they are supporting the communities their employees call home.” Recognizing Policyholders Who Have Pivoted to Manufacture COVID-19 Supplies. Every day, businesses insured by Sentry—both small and large—are adjusting their operations to serve the immediate needs of their communities. The Sentry Foundation will recognize these efforts by making contributions in the customers’ names to charities of their choice.
Donations have already been made on behalf of Lakeview Industries, SISU, Thermoformed Plastics of New England and Vista Color for their efforts in converting their operations to make ventilators and personal protective equipment.
Sentry is one of the country’s largest mutual insurance companies, currently ranked No. 685 on the Fortune 1000 list. Sentry employs more than 4,300 associates throughout the U.S., including about 2,500 in central Wisconsin.
About the Sentry Insurance Foundation
The Sentry Insurance Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Sentry. Funding priorities include education support, workforce development, United Way, and local organizations that work to improve and enhance the quality of life in the communities where we work, live, and play.
Park & Learn
Families who may lack reliable Internet at home now have additional options for their child to complete online assignments and activities as part of remote learning. This week, Wayne County Public Schools (WCPS) and the United Way of Wayne County (UWWC) launched a “Park & Learn” initiative, which encourages families to take advantage of identified parking areas around Wayne County which offer free and publicly accessible WiFi for students to use.
“School is in session and we are making every effort to help students learn and grow academically during this period of remote learning,” states Michael Dunsmore, WCPS superintendent. “As part of Governor Cooper’s Executive orders, remote learning has been deemed an essential function in North Carolina, which allows ‘Park & Learn’ to occur even under the Stay at Home Order. We appreciate the United Way of Wayne County for its collaborative partnership and for their efforts to engage community WiFi Sponsors to help us engage more students in remote learning.” To remain in compliance with Governor Cooper’s Stay at Home Order, families and students taking advantage of “Park & Learn” opportunities must stay in their vehicle while parked and return home once they are completed. “At no time should any student or family member leave their vehicle to congregate with others who are also visiting the public WiFi sites,” adds Dr. Dunsmore. “Because WiFi signal strength will vary from site to site, I would encourage families to find a ‘Park & Learn’ site that works best for their child and the mobile learning device they are using.” Printed flyers promoting “Park & Learn” sites will be posted at WCPS schools, handed out with meals at the distribution sites, and will be promoted on social media. The UWWC will also be sharing out promotional information through its communication channels and community partners. “Education is one of our key community focus areas,” adds Sherry Archibald, Executive Director of UWWC. “In recent weeks, we have partnered with Wayne County Public Schools in a number of exciting and outside of the box efforts to support local students who may be struggling to access essential services during the state’s unprecedented response to COVID-19. This ‘Park & Learn” initiative is a great opportunity for organizations and businesses to partner with United Wayne and our schools in a community-wide effort to help every child in our county succeed academically.” Businesses, churches, and/or other organizations interested in allowing students and families to use their parking lots to access their WiFi as part of the “Park & Learn” initiative should email or complete the following WiFi Sponsor form: A complete list of “Park & Learn” locations are attached to this release, located at all Wayne County Public Schools feeding sites and can be found at Families can also call 919- 735-3591 to help find a location near them. The site list will continue to be updated by UWWC as WiFi Sponsors are added. A list of free and affordable WiFi options throughout North Carolina can also be found at
United Way of Wayne County awarded grants to support community troops with our local chapter of Girl Scouts. (Picture: Jasmine Rowe and Sherry Archibald)
Boys and Girls Club of Wayne County received three grants to help support their Smart Moves, Triple Pay and Aim for Success programming. These programs help kids learn to make smart choices, engage in a healthy life style and achieve academic success.
The Partnership for Children received a grant to support Pregnancy Birth and Beyond, a free, comprehensive prenatal class for expectant mothers and their families. (Picture: Valerie Wallace and Sherry Archibald
United Way Makes an Impact in Wayne County
The United Way of Wayne County awarded 16 grants to 11 local agencies to support education, financial stability, health and wellness and basic needs in our community. Totaling over $525,000 these grants are a result of a successful 2019 workplace campaign. In addition to these Community Investment grants, the 2019 campaign also supports 211 in Wayne County, Familywize Prescription Discount Card, Postal Carrier’s and Fill the Theater food drive coordination, Family Emerging Issues grants, Education grants, disaster relief efforts and the Family Learning Center. Through these investments, United Way of Wayne County will be able to improve over 18,000 lives this year.
A United Way grant to WAGES’ Elderly Nutrition Program supports a congregate feeding site in Mount Olive and Meals on Wheels for homebound seniors who are under 60. (Picture: Sherry Archibald, Patricia Beier and Brownie Doss)
Wayne Uplift also received a grant to support their Domestic Violence Victim support program which includes a 24/7 crisis hotline, support groups and a DV Victim shelter. (Picture: Rachel Rhodes, Linda Holden-Cox and Glenda White)
A grant was also awarded for Emergency Assistance provided by Society of St. Vincent de Paul to provide help for those facing emergency need related to food, utilities or rent payments. Society of St. Vincent de Paul is a completely volunteer run organization. (Picture: Sherry Archibald and Ray Urban)
Boy Scout recived a grant to support the Community Packs. Picture: Kirk Mayes, Sherry Archibald & Jason Smith
Wayne County Wins North Carolina Spirit Award
Southco Distributing Company to Receive Spirit of NC Award
Southco Distributing Company has been selected as a Spirit of North Carolina Award recipient and will be recognized at the United Way North Carolina Annual Meeting in Pinehurst February 19th.
“Southco was nominated for the Spirit of North Carolina Award for achieving standards of excellence including engaging the community, developing a volunteer culture, partnering with the United Way of Wayne County to raise awareness of needs and fostering a spirit of giving,” said Sherry Archibald, United Way of Wayne County Executive Director.
Wayne County Winners at the North Carolina Spirit Awards
Leading beyond the traditional fundraising campaign, these winners created opportunities to educate employees on community needs, led by those at the top of the organizational chart; motivated campaign participants to give by introducing them to real stories of need; and provided volunteer opportunities so that donors could offer their skills and their hands to serve their community
Southco Distributing Company was recognized for achieving standards of excellence including engaging the community, developing a volunteer culture and partnering with the United Way of Wayne County to raise awareness of needs and foster a spirit of giving.
BB&Ts across the state were recognized for their longstanding commitment to partner with United Way in an effort to improve lives in their local community. Heather Twiggs and Neal Benton were present to accept this honor on behalf of our local BB&T.
For more information about the Spirit of North Carolina Award and a complete list of winners, visit unitedwaync.org/spirit-north-carolina-award-winners
Emil Rosenthal Award- The United Way of Wayne County Volunteer of the Year Award
Bethany Perry is awarded the Volunteer of the Year award for her countless hours of service as the Campaign Chair in 2019. She personally visited 31 Wayne County Schools, attended numerous presentations, leading cheers to motivate, coordinated our first Leaders Social, the leader in the efforts of the Steve & Susan Parr Family Learning Center, volunteering at UW events and more.
Check out what our community did on their weekend off.