The South Benton Advisory Council (SoBAC) is on a mission to collaboratively invest in the livability of South Benton County communities through long-term, sustainable projects for healthy children and families.
Events: SoBAC hosts an annual Play it Forward golf event to raise funds that directly support much needed community support activities in the South Benton County area. Examples include the new Old Mill Relief Nursery, the development of a South Benton Community Resource Center to house the food pantry, gleaners, senior nutrition, and much more at the site of the beautiful old Methodist Church, and continued work to create Safe Routes to School in Monroe. Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, The Play it Forward golf event has been changed to an online auction for 2021, with plans to return to the golf outing and dinner auction when it is safe to do so.
A very special thanks to our lead event sponsor, Bluebird Hill Cellarsfor their long-time support of this event and our community. This winery is located in South Benton County and they are coordinating the auction with the South Benton County Advisory Council.
Learn more and join in the fun for the 2021 online auction.
History: In 2013, United Way received a fifteen-year bequest from the Margaret E. Hull Fund of the Oregon Community Foundation (the Hull Fund) to conduct United Way's mission work specifically to benefit residents of rural Benton County. To ensure investment of bequest funds meets the needs and desires of community members, United Way conducted a Needs Assessment in the rural south county communities of Alpine, Bellfountain, Glenbrook, Ingram Island, Irish Bend, and Monroe.
This exploratory assessment provided a first step in establishing relationships between United Way and South Benton County residents and leadership groups. It also informed United Way of the needs and assets of the assessed communities and where funding will have the greatest sustainable impact.
Numerous assets exist in the communities of South Benton County, including two local non-profits dedicated to enhancing the livability of the region, a new community library, multiple local programs and a community dedication to volunteerism. Despite the community’s many strengths, the assessment detailed numerous priority issues that United Way could help address. Priority issues include the need for consistent and regular afterschool and summer activities for youth, career and leadership training for youth, healthy and safe outdoor recreation and exercise options and relationship building between Hispanic and non-Hispanic communities in the area.
As a result of the relationships established through the needs assessment, United Way formed the South Benton Community Advisory Group (SBAG), now called South Benton Advisory Council (SoBAC). This group, comprised of local residents, is a culturally and collaboratively minded committee that aims to create long-lasting, sustainable impact within the South Benton County Communities. SoBAC is charged with the distribution and leveraging of the Hull Fund to support the identified needs of the community.
“United Way has a very simple mission: to increase our organized capacity to care for one another.”
To perform United Way mission work and to address the priority issues highlighted in the needs assessment, SoBAC continues to work collaboratively with United Way's Community Impact Committee (UW-CIC) to develop and implement a strategic plan for the funding allocation process including a culturally appropriate funding cycle application and budget and reporting forms. UW-CIC and current SoBAC members will collaboratively participate in the annual fund allocation and project evaluation process.