Hightower: Support St. John through United Way

Published 12:02 am Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Live United.

The mission of the St. John United Way (SJUW) is Uniting people and resources to create lasting changes in St. John the Baptist Parish by focusing on the building blocks for a better life — EDUCATION, INCOME and HEALTH.

The organization supports 27 agencies throughout the Parish and last year served approximately one in four residents of St. John parish.

This support would not be possible without support from local partners, businesses and citizens.

Fundraising increased approximately 50 percent last year as the need for assistance continues to rise.

Forty percent of the parish’s households are struggling to afford basic needs. In addition to supporting everyday basic needs, the United Way provides assistance for day care, emergency food and shelter, summer enrichment programs for children and relief from natural disasters, such as the tornado that ripped through local parishes in February and the recent flooding in the Baton Rouge area.

As a member of the current Board of Directors, I have the privilege to witness first-hand the commitment of local volunteers and the assistance that the St. John United provides to the citizens of St. John Parish.

Without the United Way, too many needs in the Parish would go unmet. Marathon Petroleum and its employees are proud sponsors of the United Way.

We encourage our employees to donate to the United Way and leverage their donations through our corporate matching program. This year, our employees set a record high for employee contributions.

One of the events that we look forward to each year is the annual golf tournament at Riverland Golf Club in LaPlace, the single largest fundraising event for SJUW.

Marathon Petroleum is the title sponsor and with the help of our partners this was the most successful event in its 18 year history.

Marathon Petroleum is a proud supporter of the United Way and I’m asking you to join us in promoting a better life of education, income and health in St. John Parish.

As a local business, public organization, or citizen, there are many ways you can help. To learn more about how you can get involved, go to stjohnunitedway.org or call 985-651-9118.

Keith Hightower is the Human Resources Manager for Marathon Petroleum’s Garyville Refinery. He can be reached at thightower@marathonpetroleum.com.