November 21, 2022 - Thanksgiving Basics

NOVEMBER 21, 2022

With Thanksgiving fast approaching, it’s easy to get caught up in our To Do lists and holiday panic and forget to slow down and give thanks.  As I considered what to write about this week, I looked back to past Thanksgiving week blogs. In the past I’ve thanked all those people who have made our United Way a success with their financial support and gifts of their time and expertise. I’ve thanked those people who have made all our lives easier and safer. I’ve thanked my family, co-workers, friends, and neighbors. If I have failed to include you in any of those thank you’ s, please know that I am very grateful for those of you who are reading this today. 


But this year is different.


This year my appreciation is so basic. Having worked on homelessness for the past couple of years I realize How much I have to be thankful for that I take for granted every day. I am thankful to wake up every morning, in a soft, warm, clean and bug-free bed, comfortable in my knowledge that my basic needs will be met that day. I am thankful for plumbing and clean water, for hot showers and soap. I consider how lucky I am to have food in a working refrigerator, and the means and knowledge to prepare it in interesting and delicious ways. I am thankful to have a car and a garage that keeps it ice free over Minnesota’s frigid nights. I am thankful for boots and gloves, coats, hats and gloves. I am thankful for a job that pays me a living wage, one that stimulates my mind and heart.


November not only brings Thanksgiving but also Election Day. I am thankful to live in a country that gives me the freedom and the right to voice my opinion through my vote. 


Most of what I have listed above I would not have if I were experiencing homelessness. I might have a job, but not a living wage. I might have a car – but it might be serving as my home. I might wake up in a warm bed, but it’s temporary and I probably wouldn’t know where I’d sleep tonight or tomorrow or next week.


There are people experiencing homelessness among us. They are hard to see and to count. There are those who seek shelter at Hope and Harbor, there are families being housed in local hotels, people living in cars and campers and the sheds and living rooms of family or friends.  These are not homes. They are temporary solutions.


This year I am thankful to be lucky. For as much as I’d like to think all that I have is due to my own effort, I know that it has a lot more to do with the privilege into which I was born. This year, I am going to find a way to share my luck and show my thanks. 

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you have much to be thankful for.


Yanelis Jinete Farmers Insurance

Yanelis Jinete owns and operates a full-service Farmers Insurance Agency in Red Wing. Located on South Drive, Yanelis can help with any of your insurance needs.


Yanelis and her winning smile and positive attitude has become a local community leader. She serves on may boards and committees and Tells United Way that she most cares about the issues of homelessness, Food insecurity and mental health supports. Yanelis chose to become a United #65 member "because of the great work United Way does in the Community. UW is one of those organizations that are really making a difference in the lives of people in need." She adds, " Anything that I could do to engage with this organization, I will do, because it is an honor."



We feel honored to have Yanelis as one of our charter members. She cares for her customers and her community and backs those she believes in with her time, talent and financial support. Thank you, Yanelis, for LIVING UNITED


Learn more about Yaneli's Farmers Insurance Agency at

To Place an Order - Click Here

We want to share information about the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and upper respiratory illnesses with you as we are seeing an increase in families seeking testing and care in the Emergency Department for upper respiratory illnesses that are common this time of year. Our goal is to support families through their child's illness and give them care options other than going to the Emergency Department, which should only be done in a true emergency.

It is important to note that most children with upper respiratory infections will have a mild illness, including cold-like symptoms, low-grade fever and cough, that can be managed at home. While differences exist among all viruses, the recommendations for care at home are the same — have the child rest, keep the child well hydrated and use fever-reducing medications when needed for children four months or older.

Testing for illnesses like RSV is not always needed or recommended, as it will not change the course of care for managing symptoms at home. It is not recommended to schedule an appointment or go to the Emergency Department just to get a test. It is recommended that parents contact their primary care office to determine if their child should be seen. If so, the need for testing can be discussed during that visit.


Here are links to resources with more information:

RSV season: What parents need to know

Upper respiratory infection self-care tips 


Facebook post:

http://Increased cases of influenza and RSV infection, prompt CDC health alert  

Goodhue County Child & Family Collaborative is Now Accepting Proposals to Strengthen Resilience & Protective Factors


The Goodhue County Child & Family Collaborative is announcing a possible three year funding opportunity, beginning July 1, 2023. The mission of the Goodhue County Child & Family Collaborative is to work in partnership to build strong families and resilient children. The Collaborative Board is accepting proposals to fund projects that strengthen resilience & protective factors of families, schools, and communities.


Protective factors are:

  • Parental resilience
  • Social connections
  • Concrete support
  • Knowledge of parenting and child development
  • Social and emotional competence in children
  • Nurturing and attachment

Applications will be accepted from public schools, governmental agencies, and 501(c)(3) organizations the serve Goodhue County. Applications must be received by 4:00 p.m. on Friday, December 2, 2022.




Questions about this opportunity can be directed towards the Goodhue County Child & Family Collaborative Coordinator, Maggie Cichosz, at

DECEMBER Fare for All

Tues. Nov. 29th, 3-5pm

St. Joseph's Church, RW

Volunteers Needed

Volunteer Needs


Baggers and Cart People needed for Fare for All -Tues. 11/29/22


Call if interested 651-388-6309

or email:





“In ordinary life, we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer


If you are lucky enough to spend Thanksgiving with people you love, in health, warmth and safety, pause for a moment and appreciate what you have.


Happy Thanksgiving


Maureen Nelson

Make an Impact - GIVE to UNITED WAY

Click the box above to visit our donation page today. United Way GWP makes it easy for you to make a difference in the community and to have an impact on the lives around you. All but 1% of your gift is used locally to improve the health, education or basic needs of people in this community.  Thank you!