West Central Minnesota Communities
411 Industrial Park Boulevard
Elbow Lake, MN 56531
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"West Central Minnesota Communities Action, Inc.,
a resource agency,
is dedicated to reducing the effects of poverty,
helping people to achieve
and improving the quality
of rural life."
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Volunteer is Backbone of Nearby Elbow Lake Service Unit
No child left behind. That could be Stephanie Jacobson’s motto. Whether working her day job with Head Start, or volunteering with The Salvation Army, Jacobson of Elbow Lake, Minn., makes it her business to see that every child is cared for.
In the words of a Head Start coworker, Jacobson is “passionate about giving children and theirfamilies what they need to succeed.” Look at her Salvation Army volunteer career: eight years workingon the back-to-school program.
When that program was in danger of closing its doors, Jacobson wouldn’t let that happen. Those children had needs to be met, so Jacobson personally took over the program and has chaired it for the last four years.
For a typical person, that would be plenty, but Jacobson is not typical and no child, in fact no one in Grant County, can be left behind. Two years ago, she took on the Angel Tree project that provides Christmas gifts to children by serving as chair. She has also served as co-chair of the Christmas kettle campaign for the last six years and has been part of the local Salvation Army service unit for well over a decade.
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In 2000, Rena Moran and her children were homeless, and in 2010, she was elected to the Minnesota House of Representatives, now serving her second term! The transition from homelessness to elected office is a testament to her leadership, strength, commitment to community, and belief that ordinary people can make a real difference.
Rep. Moran believes communities can greatly help their residents by supporting programs—such as Assets for Independence (AFI)—that stabilize families’ lives and develop a sense of connection to the community She also knows the power that individuals and communities have when they recognize how policy affects them and become involved in the policy development process.
Looking at the path that led Rep. Moran to where she is today, one sees that she is proof of the benefits of such programs, and of the effects that one person can create when they engage themselves with the policies that affect their lives and communities.