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Kiwanis Club Donates $9,000 to People First of Skagit County

Burlington, WA, July 29, 2015 --( In June, the Burlington-Edison Kiwanis club presented People First of Skagit County with a check for $9,000.00. This check comes from proceeds of their 27th Annual Golf Tournament that was held on May 15, 2015. The money will ensure that current members are able to attend the State Convention held in Spokane and fund community outreach, social and advocacy events.

People First of Skagit is affiliated with the larger People First of Washington. People First’s members work to share the philosophy that a person with a disability should not be labeled BY their disability. In other words: People are First and disabilities are second. People are not their disability. Members learn to advocate for themselves and others. The group also provides opportunities for socializing and collaboration.

Kiwanis member, Ed Perry was inspired to give more to People First after sponsoring a dance event last year. “My sister has been involved for a long time. She invited me to one of the events and I discovered how much attendees valued the organization. When I learned they needed funds to continue, I presented the opportunity to my club,” said Perry.

The Skagit chapter was started by David Wilder, longtime employee of Chinook Enterprises, a local company well known for its role in promoting employment opportunities for disabled individuals. Wilder was inspired to bring a People First presence to Skagit County 26 years ago. “I wanted to create an opportunity to help others learn how to advocate for themselves, stand up for what they need, and provide access to elected officials,” Wilder remarked.

Chapter members paid two visits to Olympia during the 2015 legislative session to encourage funding for respite caregiver services for families who care for disabled loved ones. Washington is one of seven states with the largest numbers of people with developmental disabilities waiting for services. Many need respite caregiver services to avoid burning out while caring for a disabled family member.

Skagit People First will be hosting their annual legislative reception at the Skagit County Commissioners Office located at 1800 Continental Place in Mount Vernon on September 29, 2015 from 5:30 to 7:30 PM. The reception is open to the public.

About People First of Skagit County:
People First of Skagit County meets the third Friday of every month at the Mount Vernon Senior Center from 6:00 to 8:00 PM.

For more information, please visit us on Facebook: skagitpeople1st or call Chinook Enterprises at 360-428-0140.
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Chinook Enterprises
Rebecca Murray

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