Las Vegas, Nev. – On Friday, Jan. 4 at 4 p.m., WestStar Credit Union will be making a $16,000 donation to Opportunity Village as the culmination of their 2012 charity campaign: A Mile of Smiles. In August 2012, WestStar Credit Union set out on a mission to collect a mile’s worth of smiles with the intention of donating $1 for every smile collected to Opportunity Village. The Nevada-based credit union launched the Mile of Smiles campaign to remind Nevadans that a simple smile can make a difference; that a smile is contagious and has the ability to make someone’s day brighter. They have met their goal and this sentiment now equates to a $16,000 donation from WestStar Credit Union, on the behalf of the smiling participants, to Opportunity Village, Las Vegas’ Favorite Charity.
Over the past several months, WestStar sent teams of volunteer employees out to different local venues including Fremont Street, UNLV campus, local malls, Las Vegas Wranglers hockey games, The Great Santa Run and even the Magical Forest at Opportunity Village to capture pictures of people’s smiles. Their efforts, partnered with the local Las Vegans who uploaded their own smile pictures to the gallery at www.amileofsmiles.org <http://www.amileofsmiles.org> , will conclude in one giant donation to Opportunity Village.
The donation presentation will be at the Magical Forest located at 6300 W. Oakey Blvd. Las Vegas, NV 89146, this Friday, January 4 at 4 p.m. WestStar’s CEO, Rick Schmidt, Vice President of Business Development, Mona Joseph, and Marketing Manager, Kelly Cook will be presenting the donation to Dawn Newburg, Resource Development Director for Opportunity Village.
Membership in WestStar Credit Union is open to anyone employed in the Gaming Industry of Nevada and many other employer groups, including employees and members of AAA Nevada and members of the Friends of Nevada Wilderness conservation group. Family members and those living in the same household of anyone who is eligible are also eligible. A full list of eligible employer groups can be found on their website, www.weststar.org/eligibility <http://www.weststar.org/eligibility> .
ABOUT OPPORTUNITY VILLAGE
Opportunity Village is a not-for-profit organization that serves people within our community with significant intellectual disabilities, to improve their lives and the lives of their families.
Opportunity Village was founded in 1954 by seven families who were determined to give their disabled children the best lives possible. 58 years later, Opportunity Village is one of the most recognized and respected Community Rehabilitation Programs in the United States.
Nevada’s largest employer of people with disabilities, Opportunity Village serves nearly 2000 individuals annually, providing vocational training, employment, habilitation and social recreation programs and services that make their lives more productive and interesting.
Opportunity Village citizens – individuals who were previously considered unemployable – work at Opportunity Village’s Employment Resource Centers and in jobs throughout the community, collectively earning wages amounting to more than $7.6 million in 2012. They are hard-working and diligent, proudly paying taxes and happily leading more fulfilling lives.
Primarily a self-funded organization, Opportunity Village generates the majority of its operational funding through its employment contracts and fundraising efforts such as the Magical Forest and Great Santa Run, saving Nevada taxpayers $33.7 million annually.