Each year, arc hosts their Feed Colorado event to benefit Volunteer of America’s Meals on Wheels and City Harvest food bank. The donation process starts at the arc call center, where our employees call those people who have registered to donate to arc as a reminder to when their scheduled pick up time is, as well as asking these giving individuals to set out some canned food for Feed Colorado. The donations as well as the food are picked up by arc drivers beginning April 1st through May 15th, with each year having a higher goal than the year before. This year’s goal, 150 tons of food, was like the previous year surpassed—with the 2014 Feed Colorado food drive raising over 170 tons of food for those around the Colorado area who are food insecure!
We began this food drive in 2001 to alter a simple fact of life for many Coloradans: where their next meal is coming from. This year we exceeded last year’s collection by over 30%, or 3,636 boxes on 10 trailers! This food will help feed Colorado families for an entire year! And we couldn’t have done it without the help of all our hardworking arc employees, everyone who donated, as well as our sponsors. We would like to send out a special thank you to our newest sponsors: Left Hand Brewing Co., Caution Brewing Co., and Hogshead Brewery. A full list of our generous collaborators can be found at http://www.arcFeedColorado.com
In grand style before an audience of cheering families and friends, 94 individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities proudly accepted their college diplomas Wednesday evening from Arc University. Arc University, formed in 2012, is the vision of the management team at Arc Thrift Stores of Colorado. Through a $100,000.00 grant from The Daniel’s Fund, Arc developed “Arc U” to provide an education in life skills for team members with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The 94 graduates received a variety of degrees including Certificates of Participation and Doctorate Degrees.
Arc University is a 12-month program, which consists of monthly sessions covering various topics from financial literacy, music appreciation, pet care, transportation mobility and food preparation. The program is managed much like a university including lecturers, course work, study guides and exams. “The Arc University program allows individuals in the developmental disability community to achieve what so many of us take for granted,” stated Lloyd Lewis President/CEO, Arc Thrift Stores. “They achieve a sense of independence and accomplishment. With the skills learned, they increase their self esteem allowing them to effectively and actively participate in the Colorado community.”
At age 60, class Valedictorian, Dennis Schwed, addressed his graduating class with the following advice, “Do the best you can with what you have and enjoy life to the fullest.”
Radio talk show host Angie Austin delivered the commencement speech. Former First Lady of Colorado and Arc Thrift Stores Community Relations Director Frances Owens, along with Penfield Tate, Faye Tate, Cleo Parker Robinson, Tamra Ward,Stephen Burg, Lynne Valencia and Patti Dennis were also in attendance.