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UniCare, Walmart Organize Circle of Hope To Help Mountain Mission Meet Increased Demand for Assistance

Friday, December 5, 2008 General News J E 4
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CHARLESTON, W.Va., Dec. 4 UniCare Health Plan of WestVirginia, Inc. and the Nitro Walmart Marketplace are working with WestVirginia Radio Corporation to help Mountain Mission meet a significantincrease for unexpected emergency needs assistance.

Through the "Circle of Hope" food drive events, being held this Friday andSaturday, more than $20,000 in cash will be raised and two trailers will befilled with food that will help thousands of area families pay bills, put foodon their tables and clothes on their backs this holiday season.

"Due to the current economic downtown, we are witnessing a 20 percentincrease in individuals and families seeking our assistance," said JohnRoberts, executive director of Mountain Mission. "I am overwhelmed that theseorganizations stepped up to help without even being asked."

UniCare, the state's largest Medicaid Manage Care Organization, andWalmart have donated $5,000 each to the event.

"UniCare has collaborated with Mountain Mission for many years and giventhe difficult economic challenges so many are experiencing, we felt now morethan ever that this was the right time to help those in our community," saidMitch Collins, UniCare's director of Medicaid Field Operations.

"We are proud to work again with John and his team at Mountain Mission,"said Rob Greenleaf, the store manager for the Nitro Walmart Marketplace. "Withthis year being especially tough, we knew this was a great organization toreach out to."

Ten other organizations and individuals have agreed to contribute at least$10,000 collectively to help Mountain Mission reach its goal. Thoseorganizations include: Shoney's ($1,000), Star USA Federal Credit Union($1,000), IVS Group ($1,000), and Good Shepherd Mortuary ($1,000).

West Virginia Radio Corporation's radio stations V100, The Wolf, The Beat,Talk Radio 58 WCHS, and WKAZ will broadcast live for 13 hours from 6:00 a.m.to 7:00 p.m. from the drop off location next to their Virginia Street officeson Friday, Dec. 5. Mountain Mission will also be at the Nitro WalmartMarketplace on Saturday, Dec. 6 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Roberts says his organization will also accept cash and the followingitems: Boxed turkey dressing, sweet potatoes, fruit cocktail, 10-pound bag ofpotatoes, macaroni and cheese, apple sauce, five-pound bags of sugar andbrownie mix. Mountain Mission will have staff available to provide receipts.

Mountain Mission is a 501(c)3 charitable organization that helps more than9,000 people annually.

SOURCE UniCare Health Plan of West Virginia, Inc.
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