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Hike It and Spike It helps United Way

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Sherry Mumford, executive director of United Way of Chaves County, says money raised from Hike It and Spike It helps the agencies funded by her organization. (Submitted Photo)

Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

For more than six decades, the United Way of Chaves County has been helping the less fortunate and Memorial Day weekend, the agency will be getting an additional boost as scores of people are expected to be in Roswell for Hike It and Spike It.

Executive Director Sherry Mumford said United Way is the charity of choice during the 4-on-4 flag football tournament, which will take place at the Cielo Grande Recreation area.

“We’re honored to be that recipient,” Mumford said. “Of course, the money always goes a long way. It’s good to get our name out there and to let people know there is a place where they can call to get help. We don’t give them direct help, but we do give information and service referral.”

Mumford added if someone contacts the United Way, they try to send them to the right service agency.

“If we don’t know if any of our specific agencies can help, we send out a massive email to other agencies letting them know what the need is and probably letting them know that 80 percent of the time, someone comes back to us and who they know who can help fill that need,” Mumford said.

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The United Way got started in Chaves County in 1956.

“It started out with a group of community leaders who felt like there were some good programs to serve a lot of people,” Mumford said.

Mumford spends time talking to businesses about the services of the United Way and those engaged in commerce allow payroll deductions, which means more money goes back to the community.

“Last year, we helped 18 non-profits in our county,” Mumford said. “So, our main goal is to make an impact on the community to make it stronger and improve people’s lives.”

One of the agencies receiving that help is the Chaves County Court Appointed Special Advocates. Mumford said CASA has been affiliated with the United Way for a number of years. She feels there are some things people see in the community that are impacted by their help.

“This year, we provided a van for the Boys and Girls Club to transport their children from school,” Mumford said. “We bought a walk in refrigerator for Loaves and Fishes in Hagerman to keep their food cold. We helped replace a floor for the Down Syndrome Foundation.”

Mumford worked for the United Way from 1988 to 1994 and then went to work for the Roswell Refuge and came back to the United Way in 2010.

“I spent 16 years at the Refuge and the opportunity presented itself to come back and I felt like it was time for me to do something different,” Mumford said. “I was excited to come back and be able to help a lot of agencies.”

If you see Mumford or anyone else from the United Way at Hike It and Spike It, say hello.

“We’re out for the whole weekend,” Mumford said. “My husband volunteers. He’s one of the best volunteers and our board members sign up for different shifts. There’s someone from United Way out there the entire time.”

Mumford thinks that Hike It and Spike It brings the community and out-of-town visitors together for a fun weekend.

“I know the teams are competing for different prizes,” Mumford said. “I know the teams are competing for different prizes. Most of them go out there just to have a good time and do a little competition there. It’s such good camaraderie, people are excited to be there.”

Mumford thanks Hike It and Spike It organizers Cla Avery and Jim Matteucci for their hard work over the last 23 years.

“It’s really good for Roswell and the economy,” Mumford said. “It brings so much into the community and see what Roswell is all about and give back to the community.”

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