At Heneghan and Associates, P.C. (HA), we want to give back to the communities we serve. After all, we live here, too! Our HA Cares program allows us to do that. Through this program, we choose a local organization each quarter and raise money to support their work.
Since 2019, HA Cares has been raising funds by encouraging employee donations. HA then matches donations up to $5,000 per annum. We’re happy to report that our most recent fundraiser for The Amy Schulz Child Advocacy Center, Inc. in Mt. Vernon, Illinois was a success!
The Amy Center, founded by Amy’s father after her death in 1990, provides support to children who are survivors of sexual and physical abuse. The center coordinates services with other organizations to give kids the resources they need to heal. They also work with law enforcement to avoid retraumatizing survivors during legal proceedings. Acting as survivor advocates and a “friendly contact” for kids and their families, the center aims to educate and empower children, parents and teachers to prevent abuse and offer support when it happens.
The center is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit charitable organization, so services are free of charge. They serve Clinton, Marion, Clay, Washington, Jefferson, Wayne and Hamilton counties in south central Illinois. In addition to providing direct support, the center has developed online curriculums and resources for parents and educators, with plans to expand their online presence. Their “Body Boundaries” program is already offered to schools across the seven-county region they serve.
When we learned about the center, we knew immediately that we wanted to support them through HA Cares. The center, located just five minutes from our Mt. Vernon office, is a great resource in our community. As Sarah Harding, one of the committee members of HA Cares, says, “The children are our future.”
For most of the committee members and employees who donated, the Amy Center’s mission strikes a chord.
“A lot of us involved in the committee are parents,” says Laura Dabbs. She found the story of Amy Schulz and her father, which is featured on the organization’s website, especially powerful. After he lost his daughter, Laura explains, Amy’s father decided that founding the Amy Center was “what he’s going to do about it. He’s going to start this center and help these children with therapy and give them whatever they need.” We thank him and the center for their work.
HA Cares encourages clients to get involved, too. We would love to coordinate donations with you, or partner to support worthy causes. For the month of May, HA Cares has organized a 50/50 drawing with the proceeds being donated to the winner’s charity of choice. Tickets are $5 each, and everyone is welcome to participate! Contact us for more information or to enter the raffle. We’re also starting the search for other local nonprofits to support in the future. We welcome all suggestions! As committee member Lindsey Bowlin explains, “We’re trying to cover a spectrum of services and entities in our region.”
To that end, we’ve worked with a variety of great organizations in the past. Our first donation was to Angel Tree Ministries in Jersey County. We’ve collected for the Community Hope Center in Cottage Hills, IL, which provides food, clothes and mentorship to people who need it. The Restore Network in Madison County offers resources and trauma-informed training for foster families, as well as support for foster kids. After one of our surveyors did a land survey for the Glen-Ed Pantry in Edwardsville, IL, we coordinated efforts with other clients to make a donation last August. Following a major storm in the area, HA Cares gave an impromptu donation to the United Way Disaster Response and Recovery Fund.
We’re grateful for the chance to support the work these organizations do as they improve lives in our communities. Our offices and our people are local. We’re involved in these communities because we live here and we care about them. We’d like to extend a heartfelt thanks to all of our local organizations, as well as the people who donate, volunteer and work with them.
“It’s a team effort,” Lindsey says. “It takes a team to make a business work. It takes a team to make your community a better place.”
HA is happy to be a part of the team. To learn more about the Amy Center, including how you can help, check out their website and Facebook page.