– Gunther receives United Way’s 2022 Community Impact Award

Jodie Gunther receives the 2022 Gary A. LaGrange Community Impact Award. photo submitted

Jodie Gunther is this year’s recipient of the Gary A. LaGrange Community Impact Award presented by the United Way of the Tri-Valley Area.

The organization seeks nominations for the award annually. This award recognizes a company, individual, couple or organization that makes a significant impact in the greater Franklin County area through their volunteer efforts.

Gunther’s commitment and passion for the community is evident in her mission-oriented programs for youth at Old South Congregational Church in Farmington, most of which are designed to benefit the wider community, according to a United Way press release.

For many years and throughout the pandemic, they and youth have been providing free boots, coats, winter accessories, masks and groceries through various programs. These include the coat and the closet, where coats are given away every winter; the Supper Club, which has provided hundreds of free meals, many of which are being delivered to isolated seniors; and the complimentary Pancakery Cafe.

She coordinated a maze of donated groceries, which were then distributed to pantries, and delivered 50 Thanksgiving baskets for the Care and Share Food Closet. Gunther initiated the annual Thrifty Santa Toy Sale. The sale, held on Chester Greenwood Day each year prior to the pandemic, provided the community with gently used toys at affordable prices.

Her nomination states, “Jodie is a church leader who is exploring new avenues of service to the church. She welcomes new ideas and finds ways for others to grow and thrive. She enjoys being the “behind the scenes” lead. Her creativity and vision for ministry impacts the community she loves. Gunther is a role model of kindness, compassion, caring and a positive attitude.”

For more information about the United Way, visit uwtva.org, call the office at 207-778-5048, visit facebook.com/uwtva or visit the office at 218 Fairbanks Road in Farmington.

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