Healthy Special Olympians: Last month, UnitedHealthcare presented Special Olympics Nebraska with $10,000 to support its “Healthy Athletes” program designed to help Special Olympics athletes improve their health and fitness.

The check was presented on Jan. 29 by Kathy Mallatt, CEO, UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of Nebraska, at Special Olympics Nebraska, 9427 F Street, Omaha. Following the presentation, Special Olympics Nebraska Athlete Skylar Simmonds gave her testimony. The funds will be used to support Healthy Athletes’ goal to improve each athlete’s ability to train and compete in Special Olympics as well as in life.

The funds will be used to support Healthy Athletes’ goal to improve each athlete’s ability to train and compete in Special Olympics as well as in life.

Other fundraisers and charitable events include:

Mardi Gras benefit: Hanscom Park United Methodist Church, 4444 Frances St., will host a Mardi Gras concert and chili feed Sunday, Feb. 7, as a benefit for Together. The concert will feature the River City Mixed Chorus, the Hanscom Park United Methodist Church Choir and Band and other musical guests. A chili feed will follow, featuring different chili and soup recipes as well as desserts. Admission is free but a free will offering will be collected, with all proceeds going to the local nonprofit organization.

Free help with taxes: Catholic Charities will offer free tax preparation services for low-income community members through April 13 at the Catholic Charities Christ Child Center at 2111 Emmet St. Representatives from AARP Tax-Aide will be on site to help individuals complete hard copy tax documents. They are unable to e-file and participants will be provided with information on how to submit their final tax documents via U.S. mail. Hours: Mondays 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Tuesdays 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Wednesdays 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. No appointment necessary. Participants will be seen on a first come, first served basis.

Coats for homeless: Last month, the residents at Immanuel Courtyard collected more than 50 coats to donate to the Siena Francis House. The residents organize drives throughout the year including food and school supplies.

Anti-smoking rally: No Limits, Nebraska’s youth-led tobacco prevention movement, is accepting applications to participate in the No Limits Kick Butts Day and Rally on March 15 and 16 in Lincoln. The event is open to Nebraska youth ages 12–18 in grades 7–12; applications must be submitted by Feb. 19. The theme for this year’s event is “Knock out Big Tobacco.” Participants will plan and prepare for the rally during a workshop on March 15. The rally on March 16 includes a march from downtown Lincoln to the steps of the Nebraska State Capitol. Participants also will meet with state senators to discuss how tobacco is impacting Nebraska teens. More information and application forms are available at NoLimitsNebraska.com or by calling 1-866-394-8336 or emailing info@NoLimitsNebraska.com.

Fitness and community service drive: Compete Personal Fitness, 13020 West Center Road, is sponsoring a “Do Good, Feel Great” fitness and community service drive through Feb. 29. The business will offer six weeks of free group fitness classes, yoga and more to participants who make a donation to one of these charities: Open Door Mission – diaper drive, clothing and blankets; Food Bank of the Heartland – non-perishable food items; Pediatric Cancer Action Network – cash donation; and The ALS Association – cash donation. 

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