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Our Mission

Exchange, America's Service Club, is a group of men and women working together to make our communities better places to live through programs of service in Americanism, Community Service, Youth Activities, and its national project, the Prevention of Child Abuse. With this in mind we continually give to important organizations within the community.

October 7, 2021

Gina and Kim were our guests today from The Friendship Center. They provided an overall scope of services that the Center provides including an emergency shelter, non-residential services, outreach services, clinics and education on prevention. Currently they are turning away 3-5 families a week from the emergency shelter. The housing crisis in Helena has highlighted the challenges for our community. There has been an increase in service needs during COVID and those numbers have stayed steady since. It was noted that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The Friendship Center for more information.

September 16, 2021

Carrie and Heather from Florence Crittenton were our guests today. An update was given on the expansion of their childcare programs as they’ve expanded to include zero to four year old as well as four to five (pre-K) this fall. Since COVID, the need for their services have only gone up, so have their expenses. The are at near capacity in all of their programs. An exciting update was given on the purchase and renovation of the Cooney Building which will help assist in their growing needs. Currently Lewis and Clark County has the capacity to serve 42% of the need for childcare while only 12% can afford childcare. Their goal is to increase capacity for childcare while making it affordable. You can find out more at Florence Crittenton Home

August 19, 2021

Our guest today was Gerry from CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates). CASA represents the best interest of children, and their only job is to support kids in foster care. They are with the children while they cannot be with their parents and act as the voice of the child to the court. Currently there are 130 kids being served in Lewis & Clark and Broadwater Counties. CASA’s funding for the year has become more secure thanks to grants so their focus will shift to strengthening their program and growing into counties not yet served. More info at CASA of Lewis & Clark and Broadwater Counties.

July 8, 2021

Our guest today was Lisa from Career Training Institute (CTI). CTI’s program, Youth Build is going on 10 years of serving 16–24-year-old attendees with a focus on construction skills and programs that include leadership training and work readiness. The Exchange Club had granted CTI with $500 to use towards the graduation of the students. To learn more go to Career Training Institute.

June 17, 2021

Our guests were Liann and Linda from MT Supporting Military. MT Supporting Military takes care of troops across the U.S., they are not limited to Montana soldiers. COVID affected not only their fundraising efforts but also their collection of items to send overseas. They were still able to send care packages to over 200 units. Currently they are gathering donations and supplies for the fall and will begin their Christmas drive in September. MT Supporting Military was presented a $1,000 grant award. For more information visit MT Supporting Military.

June 10, 2021 - Intermountain

Our guests were Jim and Tyler from Intermountain. Intermountain services 1,100 kids ranging from ages 4 to 12 with the average age of 9 with over 52 kids in beds throughout their facilities. They provide long term residential treatment as well as therapy to families and individuals and in school therapy. Intermountain was presented a $1,000 grant award as part of our 5-year commitment. For more information visit Intermountain.

June 6, 2021 - Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies

Our guests were Brie, Executive Director of Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies and Vanessa from Bloom who is on the Board of Directors. Brie talked about the programs outreach which aims to improve the health, safety and well-being of Montana families through supporting mothers, fathers and babies. Vanessa talked about childcare services in the community, the roadblocks they face and how they’ve overcome issues through COVID and how they are working to partner with businesses to provide childcare opportunities. There is a Maternal Motherhood Task Force that was recently created to help bring awareness to the coalition and cause. Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies were presented a $1,000 grant award as part of our 5-year commitment. Their website is Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies.

May 20, 2021 - Kay McKenna Youth Foundation

Our guest was Rick from the Kay MaKenna Youth Foundation. Rick gave an overview of the upcoming summer program, Kay’s Kids. It is a free wellness program that serves over 5,200 kids (ages 6-12) free lunches and great summer activities! During COVID the program was able to distribute packets for over 1,700 kids. Looking at this year they are facing staffing issues and encouraged anyone interested in a summer job to contact the City of Helena. Find out more at http://kayskidsmt.org/.
Our second guest was Exchange Club Regional Vice President Leif Welhaven. Leif gave an update on clubs throughout the State and was also attending the District Convention this coming weekend.

May 13, 2021 - Westmont Flowers and Trading

Our guests included Ashley and Patrick from Westmont Ashley provided an overall view of Westmont and their services which include serving over 250 people a year through 13 locations and 4 vocational programs! Patrick discussed their annual events and mentioned their newest event coming up in August, Wake the Giant Music Festival! Westmont was presented with a $1,000 check as part of our grant commitments. Their website is Westmont Flowers and Trading
Our second guests were Sgt. Campbell, training Sgt. For the Lewis and Clark County’s Sheriff’s Reserve Program and Sheriff Leo Dutton. The Reserve program is looking at recruiting individuals and Sgt. Campbell went over the assignments, classes, and trainings the Reserves go through to become part of the program. The Reserves are who take part in the Exchange events such as the Stampede, Spring/Fall Fests, etc. Sheriff Leo Dutton discussed the importance of the Reserves as they are volunteers and play an important role in our community. For more information go to Sherrif's Reserves

May 6, 2021 - Big Brothers Big Sisters

Our guest today was Jesse Mahugh from Big Brothers Big Sisters. Jesse talked about the mission of BBBS and how they are focusing on serving more youth and serving them well along with finding sustainable funding this year. There are currently 55 youth in their program. The Annual Wine Crush will be held virtually on May 22nd and tickets are still available! BBBS was presented with a $1,000 check as part of our grant commitment. Jesse said the funds will be used to meet their goal of $50k for 50 kids! For more info check out bbbs-helena.org.

April 8, 2021

Our guests today were Gina and Kim from the Friendship Center. The Friendship Center provides a safe place after a crisis such as sexual assault or violence. G ina and Kim discussed the impacts COVID has had on their services and how they are overcoming obstacles presented through the past year. It was noted that April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Visit The Friendship Center for more information.

April 1, 2021

Our guest today was Gerry from CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates). CASA represents the best interest of children and their only job is to support kids in foster care. They are with the children while they cannot be with their parents and act as the voice of the child to the court. The Light of Hope event is coming up on April 16, 2021 and Gerry encouraged members to visit their website and cause at CASA of Lewis & Clark and Broadwater Counties.

March 4, 2021

Our guest was Janet Riis from Angel Fund. Janet gave an overview of the past year and how the Angel Fund has been able to pivot and adapt to continue the success of their programs by going virtual on their events to ensure the community needs are met. They have had a successful year despite the challenges are look forward to next year and serving the community. You can donate at: Angel Fund

February 4, 2021

Carrie and Heather of Florence Crittenton were our guests today. Carrie discussed their programs and how COVID has affected them, how they have prevailed and what is to come! The next program they will offer includes pre-school for 4- and 5-year old’s. Heather discussed Paint the Town Pink and noted it will be held virtually this year, but you can still reserve your Party Box by Monday and buy your raffle tickets! You can find out more at Florence Crittenton Home

August 20, 2020

Mary and Janet with the Angel Fund were our guests today. The Angel Fund helps local children with school items including clothing, shoes, school supplies and other scholastic necessities. The Angel Fund also offers scholarships to Seniors. Last year they awarded 25 scholarships in the amount of $1,000. They are still raising money for Stuff the Bus as there were over $51,000 in grants submitted, with over $36,000 raised to date. You can donate at: Angel Fund Stuff The Bus Their fall clothing drive will begin in October with over 900 students in need along with the need for 80 pairs of running shoes. Mike presented the Angel Fund with $1,000 today.

March 12, 2020

Lian and Linda from MT Supporting Military were our guests today. Lian shared with us all the great things they do for our Montana Military. The send care packages to the troops overseas, the make sure that each soldier has a stocking filled at Xmas. The program started in 2003. The main staples that the soldiers like and/or need are High Country Jerky, single serve electrolyte powder mix and coffee. For more information visit MT Supporting Military.

March 5, 2020

Helena Literacy Council 2020

Mary DuVernay from the Lewis & Clark Literacy Council was a guest. She thanked the Club for our continuous donations to the program and gave us an update on their activities. Mike presented her with a $500.00 grant check. Visit Lewis & Clark Literacy Council for more info.

January 16, 2020

Chris May from the Helena Girls’ Softball Association was also a guest. He thanked the Club for our continuous donations to the program. Find out more at Helena Girls’ Softball Association.

December 19,2019 - Friendship Center

Jenny from the Friendship Center was our guest today. Jenny shared that they have 13 beds total in their facility, they received a grant to be able to hire an attorney to offer free legal service in the Tri-County region. For more information check out their website at Friendship Center.

November 21, 2019 - Coats for Kids Program

Lesley updated us on the Coats for Kids Program - we have given out 128 coats and 101 pairs of boots and we haven’t heard from 5 schools.

October 31, 2019 - Cohesion Dance

Pat and Tanya Call from Cohesion Dance were our guests today. The Club donated $1,500 to their Nutcracker on the Rocks program. Check out their website for more information www.cohesiondance.org.

September 19, 2019 - Helena Food Share

Our guest today was Liz Harrison from the Helena Food Share. Liz informed us that they provide 1100 kid packs each Friday so kids will have food for the weekend. She noted that 98% of their operating money comes from the community. The Pantry hours are M-F 12:30-6 p.m. The annual Turkey Challenge will be held November 22nd from 9-6 p.m. at the L&C Library. Please bring your frozen turkeys or cash donations to ensure everyone has a nice Thanksgiving meal. Their website is Helena Food Share

September 5, 2019 - Angel Fund

Our guests today were Janet Riis from the Angel Fund. Janet Riis informed us of their four main programs. 1. Stuff the Bus- this year was a phenomenal year. This program provides school supplies for kids in the Helena School District and surrounding areas. Not too late to donate school supplies, you can drop to CRA Middle School any time during the school year. 2. Clothing Program- This runs from October 1-November 30th and provides funds to students to go and purchase their own school clothing. Coordinated by teachers and school counselors. 3. Running for MT Futures- promotes active and healthy lifestyles by providing tennis shoes for students in need. The Angel Fund received a grant this year to help fund this program. The three new schools, the gym flooring requires special shoe soles to be worn. This grant will help more students get the appropriate footwear. 4. Scholarships- offered to High School Seniors. This past school year they were able to award 25 scholarships, 20 were sponsored by private donors and the rest were funded by the Angel Fund. Check out their website at Angel Fund.

August 22, 2019 - Kay McKenna Youth Foundation

Rick Schlenker, former Exchange Club member and President of the Kay McKenna Youth Foundation was our guest. He spoke about the summer program, Kay’s Kids. They offer activities and lunch for 11 weeks each summer at three local parks. This summer they have served over 5100 children in the community. They partner with the City of Helena and the Helena School District for the programs and meals. Mike presented him with a $1,000 grant check. Find out more at http://kayskidsmt.org/.

August 15, 2019 - Big Brothers Big Sisters

Marci Williams, the Recruitment and Enrollment Specialist from Big Brothers Big Sisters was our guest. She spoke about the program noting that their office has relocated to the 6th Ward. They serve about 250 children in our community. They are always looking for Bigs, especially males. Mike presented her with a $1,000 grand check. For more info check out bbbs-helena.org.

July 11, 2019 - Florence Crittenton Home

Our guest today was Carrie from Florence Crittenton Home. She informed us of the great programs they have to offer families. Carrie shared with us that they served 2,311 families in the past 5 years. Some of the programs they offer are: Substance Abuse- they try and keep the children with the parent during treatment, Foster Care Services and Preschool for ages 2-5. You can find out more at Florence Crittenton Home

May 23, 2019 - Helena Fire Department

Brad and Dave from the Helena Fire Department were our guests. We had previously given them a $500 grant check to help in their trip to Seattle for the Stair Climb. This is an Annual event that raised close to $3 million.

May 16, 2019 - Helena Speed Goats

Our guest today was Kolby and Lucas from Helena Speed Goats. This is a Track & & Field program that train athletes to compete in the Track & & Field events starting at the age of 7 and on up. They have approximately 60 kids in the program. The season lasts appx. 6 weeks and they compete in two Track meets each season. The cost of the program is $135/kid. Last year they gave out $1,200 in scholarships to kids that can’t afford it. The Club donated $500 which sponsored a family with 5 kids. Their website is Helena Speed Goats Facebook
Helena Speed Goats

May 2, 2019 - Helena Figure Skating Club

Our guest today was Shan and son Daniel from the Helena Figure Skating Club. The Exchange Club donated $500 to the skating club. Their website is Helena Figure Skating Club

March 21, 2019 - Westmont Flowers and Trading

Our guests today were Arlene Flynn and Suzi from Westmont. Arlene informed us of the projects they have in the works. Arlene briefly talked about the difficulty of hiring staff. They are not able to take on more clients due to not having enough staff. Suzi is one of the Clients that works for Westmont, she is on the cheer squad, Special Olympics and takes care of the animals at the Farm in the Dell. They will be breaking ground in May for the Morgan’s Maze in honor of Dick Morgan who was a huge supporter of Westmont. Their website is Westmont Flowers and Trading

February 21, 2019 - Lewis & Clark County Literacy Council

Helena Literacy Council 2019

Our guests were Mary DuVernay and a student from the Lewis and Clark Literacy Council. Mary talked about how our last year’s grant helped 41 students. She spoke about their mission to help adults with reading, writing and language skills. She also thanked Member Greg Snortland for volunteering to help build a contact database for them using Salesforce. For more information visit Helena Literacy Council Mike presented her with a grant check for $500.

January 24, 2019 - Intermountain

Ralph Yaeger, Senior Development Officer, from Intermountain was our guest. He gave us an overview of their programs and thanked us for our years of continued support. For more information visit Intermountain. Sheridan presented him with a $1,000 grant check. Ralph invited us to have lunch on campus some Thursday and see their facilities.

January 17, 2019 - CASA

Kendra and Pam from CASA were our guests today. They could use more volunteers especially in Townsend. Casablanca Light of Hope event March 2, 2019. Early Bird tickets available. President Sheridan Jones presented them with a $1,000 grant check. More info at CASA of Lewis & Clark and Broadwater Counties.

January 3, 2019 - Friendship Center

Jenny Eck was our guest today. She is the new Executive Director of the Friendship Center. She discussed some details of their mission. They cover Lewis & Clark, Broadwater and Jefferson Counties. She invited anyone interested to their 2nd Friday Lunch and Tours. Contact the Center if you are interested in seeing the Facility. President Sheridan Jones presented her with a $1,000 grant check. For more information check out their website at Friendship Center.

November 15, 2018 - Cohesion Dance Project

Our guests today was Tanya Call from Cohesion Dance Project. She talked about the event on the 24th and 25th, Nutcracker on the Rocks. This program involves individuals from age 7 to 77. They are also doing a matinee performance on Monday the 26th for some of the schools. The club donated $1,500 toward the school performance. Check out their website for more information www.cohesiondance.org.

November 1, 2018 - Montana Shakespeare in the Parks

Our Guest was Mike Wainwright, the Development Director, from Shakespeare in the Parks. He gave us an overview of the program then discussed the Shakespeare in the Schools program. They cover 53 middle and high schools. They also do a Shakes program for 62 elementary schools. The middle and high programs have performances next week if you would like to attend. They will be at HHS on the 7th, CHS on the 8th and East Valley Middle School on the 9th. The Board approved a $500 Grant for the school program. To get more information go to Montana Shakespeare in the Parks.

October 4, 2018 - Kay McKenna Youth Foundation

Our guest today was Rick Schlenker from Kay McKenna Youth Foundation. Rick mentioned that the foundation has been in existence for 21 years and have 7-10 members. Their main focus in the summer program for kids ages 6-13, M-F from 9-3 p.m. They provide food and activities free of charge for the Helena area kids. They served appx. 3,600 kids this past summer. This program receives help from the community, Helena School Dist. and the City Parks Dept. If interested in joining their board or learning more about their program go to their website at http://kayskidsmt.org/.

September 20, 2018 - Montana Supporting Military

Our guest today was Linda and Liann from Montana Supporting Military. Liann started the organization in 2003 to assist troops with care packages including treats, necessities, cards and games. Troops can contact Montana Supporting Military via their website - https://mtsupportingmilitary.org/. Exchange Club President Sheridan Jones presented Linda and Liann with a $1,000 grant check.

August 23, 2018 - Big Brothers Big Sisters

Our guest today was Colleen Brady of Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS). Colleen thanked the community for all of their support during the budget cuts earlier in the year. Colleen noted they reduced their staff from 9 down to 5.5, cut school based programs. Their Board is focusing on what BBBS does so well which is the community based programs. Colleen mentioned that they are in need of males for the Big program- if interested go to their website.

BBBS has their 3rd annual Helena Chilly Open at GMCC on October 27, 2018, this is a fun fundraiser – bring out your brooms, golf clubs, tennis rackets anything you think you can hit a golf ball with. Their Bowl For Kid’s sake is January 25-27, 2019, start rounding up your team. See their website for more information on both events.

August 16, 2018 - The Placer Pantry

The Placer Pantry 2018

Melissa Domme from the Soroptimist's and Terry Kockler, President of the GFWC (General Federation of Women’s Club) were our guests. The Club presented them with a check for $500 for "The Placer Pantry". The pantry is now located in the Good Samaritan Thrift Store at 3067 N. Montana Ave. They are having a collection drive in front of Walmart Saturday the 25th as well as drop off location at Opportunity Bank. The pantry provides full size personal hygiene items for those in need. For more information contact Terry at tgkockler@gmail.com or go to their website Placer Pantry.

August 9, 2018 - Angel Fund

Our guest today was Janet Riis, a board member of the Angel Fund. Janet informed us of the great things the Angel Fund does for our area school kids and families. The "Stuff the Bus" campaign is going on now, please donate school supplies if you can. There are many churches and business’ that are collecting school supplies. Angel Fund also offers scholarships to area students. Upcoming events August 14th at L&C Tap room and on the 26th at Ten Mile brewery are to charitable events for the Angel Fund. Check out their website at Angel Fund.

August 2, 2018 - Merlin CCC

Our guest was Marisa Diaz-Waian of Merlin CCC. The focus of their organization is to enrich lives in our communities with philosophy. They provide free activities with creative thinking. They have a Halloween theme in October that gets the kids thinking. The club presented Marisa with a check for $500. Check out their website at Merlin CCC.

June 7, 2018 - Breathe Project

Jamie from the Breathe Project was our guest today. Jamie and her small team of 3 provide information on suicide prevention. They work with other organizations in town to make sure an individual gets the resources and counseling they need. All expenses are currently paid out of their own pocket or whatever donations they receive. For more information check out their website at Breathe Project.

May 24, 2018 - Intermountain

Terry Chaney from Intermountain was our guest today. They just completed a 5 year $25MM capital campaign, with the completion of their new Chapel. Intermountain serves over 2,600 kids/families in Montana and 80-85% of those are served in Helena. They have room for 60 residents and the rest are outpatient clients. Terry offered to host the club for lunch in the future so we could tour their campus. For more information check out their website at Intermountain.

May 17, 2018 - Westmont Flowers and Trading

Arleen Flynn from Westmont was our guest today. She talked about all the great things that Westmont does for the disabled folks in our Community. She noted that they are working on grants to help with the repairs for the Westmont Farm and Gardens home. Sheridan presented Arleen with a check for $1,000 as part of our 5 year commitment. Their website is Westmont Flowers and Trading

May 10, 2018 - Florence Crittenton Home

Our guest was Carrie Kreps from Florence Crittenton Home. She talked about the services they offer. They are launching an early childhood preschool to offer more services under their roof vs. sending out to other organizations. Carrie thanked us for the Club’s donation of $2,500 to go towards their new roof. You can find out more at Florence Crittenton Home

April 12, 2018 - Friendship Center

Our guest today was Mike from the Friendship Center, they serve 3 counties and is the largest of this type of agency in Montana. Mike noted that the occupants can stay from 1 month to 1 year. The Friendship Center currently has 12 women and 9 children. They just had their Empty Bowl fundraiser and there were 1400 people in attendance. For more information check out their website at Friendship Center.

April 5, 2018 - Helena Figure Skating Club

Our guest today was Brian from the Helena Figure Skating Club. The club presented a $500 check to Brian for their grant request. Brian noted the monies will go towards paying for ice time. The skating club is hosting a competition this Saturday at the ice arena, they expect appx. 37 skaters. They also host 2 ice shows each year and have their Spring Show coming up in a few weeks. Skaters range from 4 years old on up to adults. For more information go to Helena Figure Skating Club.

March 8, 2018 - Lewis & Clark County Literacy Council

Helena Literacy Council 2018

Our guest today was Mary DuVernay Director of the L&C Literacy Council. This program provides life skills in helping adults become literate, speak English and be productive in our community. The program offers one-to-one tutoring, weekly discussion groups for women and Book Pals- reading buddies in the schools. For more information about L&C Literacy Council please go to their website at Helena Literacy Council.

February 1, 2018 - Helena Bearcats Basketball League

Lance and Cassie Wetzel from Helena Bearcats basketball league were our guests today. They outlined what our donations contributed to – uniforms, warm up balls, etc. They have 13 teams with 115 kids, 4 girl’s teams and 9 boy’s teams. The program is 100% volunteer based. They noted that our logo is on the banners and uniforms. Check out more about the Helena Bearcats Basketball League.

January 4, 2018 - Big Brothers Big Sisters

Colleen from Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) was our guest today. Colleen noted they have been in Helena for 50 years. The program's main focus is mentoring kids, studies have shown that kids with mentors have higher education rates, higher self-esteem avoid alcohol and drug use and live a more productive life. BBBS is experiencing a huge budget cut as a result of State and federal funding cuts. BBBS’s biggest fundraiser is their Bowl for Kid’s Sake which is the weekend of January 27th. Go to www.bbbs-helena.org to see what you can do to help.

December 28, 2017 - Angel Fund

Marcia Wall from the Angel Fund was our guest today. Marcia indicated that this is the 28th year of the Angel Fund, they provide clothing, coats and school supplies to area school kids. She noted that they have helped 1400 kids from the surrounding areas. One of their biggest donation fundraiser is the Stuff the Bus with over 70 churches and businesses helping with the Stuff the Bus program. To learn more about the Angel Fund or donate go to: www.angelfundhelena.org.

December 21, 2017 - Helena Food Share

Danielle from Helena Food Share was our guest today. Sheridan presented her with a check for $1,000 to help with their Kid Packs. Their website is Helena Food Share

October 26, 2017 - Montana Children’s Trust Fund

Melissa and Cassidy from Montana Children’s Trust Fund were our guests today. The Club donated to their Halloween Fun Fest which was held on Sunday at Capital City Health Club from 1-4 p.m. Their website is Montana Children’s Trust Fund

September 14, 2017 - Florence Crittenton Home

Our guest today was Carrie Krepps from Florence Crittenton Home. Carrie noted they have been in business for 117 years. They provide many services to young women and their children(s). Providing tools to these young mothers and families to help them be successful in society. Some of the services they provide are: Residential program, Home visiting program, Child Care Center and Community based parenting classes. They have recently added services to help with substance abuse. Their website is Florence Crittenton Home

August 17, 2017 - Save The Brain

Our guest today was Dale from "Save The Brain". Exchange Club Board Member Sheridan Jones is also a part of this organization. The organization started in 2015 and the members are medical professionals in our community. They provide awareness on concussions, Baseline concussion screenings, education and coordinate concussion management. Please see their website for more information Save the Brain Helena

June 8, 2017 - God’s Love

Our guests today were Tim and Rachel from God’s Love. They informed us of the facilities they have to offer to the homeless. They have 31 beds and have family style rooms as well. You can find out more at God’s Love

June 1, 2017 - Pads for Paws

Debbie from Pads for Paws was our guest today. Debbi re-capped their involvement with the Spring Fest. Pad for Paws had 21 volunteers, ran quite a few adds prior to the event. They feel the assembly line that they did for checking ID’s, tokens etc. worked pretty well. Matt presented Debbie with a check for $3,250 which was half of the net proceeds from the event. Their website is Pads for Paws

May 04, 2017 - Montana Supporting Soldiers

Liann and Linda from Montana Supporting Soldiers were our guests today. The club presented them with a check for $500. They indicated they serve at least a 1,000 from all over the U.S.A. A lot are from out of state. They prepare the care packages to be specific and are not generic, this includes dogs. May is military appreciation month. Their website is Montana Supporting Soldiers.

March 2, 2017 - Helena Industries

Katie from Helena Industries along with 2 clients and a Board member were our guests today. Katie informed us what Helena Industries is all about. She noted if anyone wants a tour to please call ahead and they would be happy to show us around. Exchange Club President Matt Maze presented her with a $500 grant for their yearbook project. Their website is Helena Industries.

February 16, 2017 - Helena Fire Station

Our other guests were 2 of 7 firemen from the Helena fire station who are competing in a stair challenge next month in Seattle. They will be packing appx. 70lbs while racing up 69 floors (1,311 steps). Record time is 11 minutes. The Exchange Club donated $800 toward this fundraiser for leukemia research. KTVH was also there today so we should see a clip KTVH News and KXLH News.

December 22, 2016 - Family Outreach

Our guests today were Erin and Katie from Family Outreach. They thanked the club for our $300 donation to them in November they noted the funds helped sponsor a family for Christmas and purchase gas and grocery gift cards. Family Outreach main focus is to teach families and friends how to teach skills to children and adults with special needs. Family Outreach has offices in Helena, Bozeman and Butte. Their website is Family Outreach.

December 15, 2016 - Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies

Our guest today was Katie McLain from Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies. Katie spoke about their safe sleep, safe seats and mental health program. Exchange Club President Matt Maze presented a $600 grant request that the Board recently approved. Their website is Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies.

December 1, 2016 - Helena Bearcats Traveling Basketball League

Our guests were Lance and Cassie Wetzel of the Helena Bearcats Traveling Basketball league. Lance informed the group that the league stared in 2013 and started with one team and has grown to 80 kids in the 2nd-7th grade. The teams play approximately 5 tournaments during the season. The Board approved a $500 donation to the Bearcats the monies help pay for uniforms, basketballs and gym time. To find more information their website is www.leaguelineup.com/welcome.asp?url=helenabearcats.

September 8, 2016 - Angel Fund

Our guest was Marcia Wall from the Angel Fund. Marcia highlighted some of the many great things the Angel Fund has done for students in our community. Marcia noted this is the 27th year for the Angel Fund and last year they provided clothing, boots, coats and school supplies to close to 800 students. The Angel Fund is giving a grant to each area school totaling $106,500 to help provide the above mentioned items to students in need. The Angel Fund has also started a scholarship program for seniors at the area high schools, they award (20) $1,000 scholarships, the students must go to a Montana post-secondary school to be eligible. The Stuff the Bus program had another successful summer this year with 60 collection sites for school supplies. Matt Maze presented Marcia with a check for $500. For more information on Angel Fund their website is www.angelfundhelena.org.

August 18, 2016 - Youth Connections

Our guest today was Colleen Smith and Annie Lawler of Youth Connections. Colleen is the Youth Connections Director and Annie is a Student Representative from HHS. Colleen informed us that their main focus is on preventing and reducing substance abuse and violence, while enhancing social, emotional and mental health for Helena’s Youth. Annie talked about the Pure Performance camp the students did last week at Camp Child. This program is a student-led program that promotes living a healthy lifestyle to include: sleep, nutrition, central nervous system recovery, training/exercise and being drug/alcohol free. For more information on Youth Connections their website is www.youthconnectionscoalition.org. The club donated $250 to them in July.

August 11, 2016 - Kay Mckenna Foundation

Our guest today was Rick Schlenker of Kay Mckenna Foundation. The program offers a FREE summer recreation program for area kids. They are currently at Barney Park, Memorial Park and Lincoln Park. The program runs for 9 weeks in the summer and also offer meals to the kids in attendance. Find more information on the program at kayskidsmt.org. John Harrington presented Rick Schlenker with a check for $500.

June 23, 2016 - Friendship Center

Abbie Chermack from the Friendship Center was our guest. She spoke of the services they provide. She stated that our funds go directly into their Emergency Client Services Fund. For more information check out their website at Friendship Center. John presented her with a check for $1,000 from the Club as part of our five year commitment.

June 9, 2016 - Intermountain

Adam Jespersen from Intermountain was our guest. He spoke of their residential campus as well as other services they provide. For more information check out their website at Intermountain. John presented him with a check for $1,000 from the Club as part of our five year commitment.

May 19, 2016 - Family Promise

Marshall Price presented Nick Zullo, Executive Director of Family Promise with a $2,500 check from Enterprise Foundation on behalf of the Exchange Club. Nick spoke about Family Promise and he indicated they have a fundraiser coming up in June “Mafia Murder Mystery” dinner theater shows. The shows are June 17th and 18th. More info. Family Promise. Marshall had 2 guests with him from Enterprise.

May 12, 2016 - Montana Children’s Trust Fund

Our guest was Kami Kirchberg from Montana Children’s Trust Fund. Kami reviewed all of the projects that they were involved with in April. #GoBlue- encouraged Montanan’s to wear blue on Monday’s during the month of April to show support for child abuse prevention. Displayed pinwheels at the state Capitol this was part of their Pinwheels For Prevention, they also hosted a Family Resource Fair. John Harrington presented Kami with a check for $500 as part of our ongoing commitment to this organization. Their website is Montana Children’s Trust Fund

April 14, 2016 - Pads for Paws

Debbie Pistoria from Pads for Paws was our guest. John Harrington (Club President) presented her with a check for $2,250 for half of the Beer Fest event profit. Debbie informed the club that Pad for Paws supports the welfare of domestic animals. Their motto is: “Keeping Pets and Their People Together”. Their website is Pads for Paws

March 10, 2016 - YWCA

Kelly Goodwin McBride from the YWCA was our guest. Kelly informed us that their remodeling project is done, they moved in December 2015. They maintained the historical integrity of the building with the remodel. Kelly talked about the services they offer to women and their children. Kelly also mentioned they do tours of the building every 12th of the month at Noon. Come see and hear about their building and services they offer. Marshall Price presented Kelly with a $1,500 check from the Enterprise Foundation on behalf of the club. Their website is YWCA Helena

March 3, 2016 - Lewis & Clark Literacy Council

Peggy Benkelman, Executive Director from Lewis & Clark Literacy Council was our guest. Peggy spoke about the students they serve and the services they offer. Their website is Helena Literacy. John presented Peggy with a check for $500.

February 18, 2016 - YMCA

Dave Smith from the YMCA was our guest. He spoke about the 75th Anniversary of Camp Child as well as other activities they have going on. Marshall presented him with a check for $1,500 from Enterprise Foundation on behalf of the Club. Their website is YMCA Helena

February 4, 2016 - Florence Crittenton Home

Our guest was Carrie Krepps from Florence Crittenton Home. Carrie provided a couple of startling statistics in regards to children in the U.S. 45% of kids aged 0-3 years live in poverty and over 1.8 million have a parent in jail. Carrie also shared with us some of the things they do for the young mothers that are in Florence Crittenton. This includes providing the tools and training in how to parent their child, a lot of the young mothers have not been in a nurturing home setting themselves so difficult to do with their own child. They have applied for a HUD Grant and will be partnering with Helena Housing to offer housing vouchers to these young parents and their families. Remember Paint The Town Pink is February 20th. President John Harrington presented Carrie with a check for $1,000.00. Their website is Florence Crittenton Home

December 17, 2015 - Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies

Marshall Price introduced our guests Jen Shaw and Judy Edwards from Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies. Judy Edwards told the club what their program is all about. Some of things they do is provide cribs and car seats to new mothers and show them the proper installation of the car seats. They offer parent education, help prevent baby injuries and reduce the # of infant deaths as a result of Shaken Baby Syndrome. Judy mentioned they have their annual fundraiser on May 6, 2016 at the Kleffner Ranch, mark your calendars. Marshall Price presented her with a $1,000 grant from the Enterprise Foundation on behalf of the Exchange Club. Their website is Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies

November 19, 2015 - Montana Children’s Trust Fund

Kami and Melissa from Montana Children’s Trust Fund were our guests. They thanked the Club for our grant of $500 which helped with the Halloween Fun Fest as well as the April event of Child Abuse Awareness Month and placing pinwheels on the Capital lawn. They stated the Fun Fest was a great success with over 1,000 attending. New this year and very popular was their costume swap. They will be back to visit with us before April to get members signed up to help with the pinwheels. Their website is Montana Children’s Trust Fund

November 5, 2015 - Westmont Flowers and Trading

Robin Farrell from Westmont Flowers and Trading was our guest today. Robin brought Vickie, one of Westmont’s clients that work’s in the flower shop along with him. Robin mentioned that they are fund raising to purchase a greenhouse to allow for a longer growing season. The cost of the greenhouse is $6,000. They are appx. half way there. Robing also talked about their bud vase program. This program is $10/month and they currently have appx. 300 deliveries a month. John presented Robin with a $500 check to help with the purchase of the greenhouse. Their website is Westmont Flowers and Trading

October 22, 2015 - Helena Education Foundation

Our guest today was Lisa Cordingly of the Helena Education Foundation. Lisa informed the club about some of the programs that the foundation has done and continues to do. Celebration of Excellence they honor distinguished students and educators at a formal luncheon. Carnival Classic, Fabulous Firsts, Pen & Ink are a few others to mention. Check out their website for me programs and details of each. Helena Education Foundation.

October 1, 2015 - Ryan United

Derek VanLuchene from Ryan United was our guest today. Derek informed the club how Ryan United was founded. Derek’s 8 year old brother was abducted and killed in Libby, Montana in 1987. Ryan United works with law enforcement and legislation to ensure there are resources and laws in place in regards to sexual offenders. Ryan United’s main three things they focus on are: 1. Law Enforcement Training- Provide training to law enforcement for child abduction and sexual offender response. 2. Community Education- Conduct Town hall style meetings in communities. Educate folks on how to be safe online, how to make your community a safer place to live and protect themselves from sexual offenders. 3. Assistance to victims- Work with families to bring them resources if they are victims of sexual abuse, sort of a mediator between the victims and law enforcement. Sheridan Jones presented a $1,000 check to Ryan United. If you would like to learn more about Ryan United please visit their website at: Ryan United

September 3, 2015 - Westmont

Jean Morgan from Westmont was our guest. She spoke about their upcoming events, Family Fun Days, September 12th and the Black Tie Blue Jeans Dinner is the 18th. She spoke about how the Club’s donations have been used. John Harrington presented her with a check for $1,000 as our five year commitment to the organization. Their website is Westmont

August 13, 2015 - Florence Crittenton Home

Carrie Krepps, from the Florence Crittenton Home was our guest. She spoke about the programs they have as well as an upcoming fundraiser, “Support the Girls”, August 20, 2015 at the Fairgrounds. For tickets or information check out their website - Florence Crittenton Home. Marshall Price presented her with a check for $2,000 from the Enterprises Foundation on behalf of the Exchange Club.

July 9, 2015 - Life Houses

Jay and Anita Sherley from Life Houses were our guests. Their mission is to build and/or purchase residences for young adults to live together in supportive, drug and alcohol free environments where they can help each other overcome the challenges in their lives. Through the influence of strong peer examples and mentors, the young adults in these “Life Houses” will be encouraged to find vision for their futures and a foundation for success. Check out the website Life Houses. Marshall Price presented them with a check for $2,000 from Enterprise Foundation on the behalf of the Exchange Club of Helena.

June 11, 2015 - Friendship Center

Melinda Reed from the Friendship Center was our guest. The Center provides emergency and transitional services to victims of domestic and sexual violence. Check out their website for more information. Friendship Center. The Club presented her with a check for a $1,000 as part of our five year commitment to the Center.

May 28, 2015 - YMCA

Dave Smith from the YMCA was our guest. Dave gave us highlights of their current programs. He reminded us of the Camp Child clean-up day, June 6th. Dan presented Dave with a check for $500 for their grant request. Their website is YMCA Helena

May 7, 2015 - Pad for Paws

Debbie and Ron from Pad for Paws were our guests today. They were very appreciative of the $2,250 from the Beerfest last month. Debbie told us the history of Pad for Paws which started in 2006. Pad for Paws started out as a pantry and evolved into a lot more. They help families in need, kids with therapy dogs, animal control- help abused animals, spay and neutered clinics. Debbie mentioned that the program is run 100% by volunteers. Their website is Pads for Paws

April 16, 2015 - Kay McKenna Youth Foundation

Former Member, Rick Schlenker from the Kay McKenna Foundation was our guest. Rick thanked the Club for our sponsorship of their Annual Dance. Rick gave us a brief history of the summer program for Kay’s Kids, which last year had close to 4,000 participate. Their website is Kay McKenna Youth Foundation

February 19, 2015 - Lewis & Clark Literacy Council

Peggy Benkelman and Wendy Wheeler from the Lewis & Clark Literacy Council were our guests. They spoke about the non-profit organization which they tutor adults and young adults who want to improve their basic reading, writing, spelling and math skills. They help them prepare for the GED, improve their employability skills, obtain their driver's license and much more. They thanked us for the recent donation the Board had approved. We donated $500 upon a grant request. For more information visit their website - Lewis & Clark Literacy Council