Moving the community forward

Date: April 20, 2016

Sheriff Jeffrey R. Gahler was the featured speaker at United Way’s “In Their Own Words” Breakfast Series in Harford County this week. Sheriff Gahler expressed his sincere gratitude to the community for the overwhelming support that the Sheriff’s department received in light of the recent tragic deaths of two deputies.

The 2-1-1 United Way Maryland Helpline is very important to Harford County, Gahler said, and each patrol vehicle has 2-1-1 cards for deputies to give to residents who are struggling with issues such as homelessness, hunger and utility turnoffs. The 2-1-1 helpline is a free resource connecting local residents in need with thousands of organizations and services that can provide help.

Gahler also talked about raising awareness regarding the current heroin problem. His offices throughout Harford County publicly post statistics on heroin overdoses and deaths. These shocking messages are meant to inform the community about the seriousness of the epidemic and how all community members and partners can help decrease the drug abuse problem.

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He also discussed a new and more thorough process to report calls so that patterns can be established, which is especially important for domestic abuse cases.  Lastly, Gahler spoke about increasing technology and the use of in-car cameras to assist deputies.

Paige Boyle, Harford County Partnership Board Chair, offered remarks and presented Sheriff Gahler with United Way of Central Maryland’s Live United Award plus a $2,000 gift to the Harford County Sheriff’s Office Benevolent Fund to support the families of Senior Deputies Mark Logsdon and Patrick Dailey.

Rob Sargent, Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton which sponsored the event, and member of the Harford County Partnership Board, kicked off the breakfast and welcomed guests.

Lyle Sheldon, CEO of University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health, discussed “Moving Healthcare Forward” and focusing on population health.  UM Upper Chesapeake Health is using innovative technology to provide well-coordinated care to Harford County residents.  With numerous partners such as United Way, Healthy Harford, Harford County Health Department and The Office on Aging, care is being provided beyond the hospital walls.

Mark Furst, President & CEO of United Way of Central Maryland, spoke about how United Way’s work has expanded into Harford County.  Project Homeless Connect – Harford County (PHC) was a great example of partnership between United Way and the Harford County government. PHC gave an updated picture of the actual homeless count in Harford County and brought hundreds of volunteers to help change the odds for local individuals and families. Furst also discussed United Way’s new housing and income program which will be housed in Magnolia Elementary and will link a case manager to 20 families who will receive services and education to stay housed and ensure their children remain in school.

This event was made possible thanks to the generosity of DLA Piper, Booz Allen Hamilton, EZ Shield and Harford Mutual Insurance Company. Thanks also to the Water’s Edge Event Center.

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For more than 90 years, United Way of Central Maryland has been improving lives in the communities it serves: Anne Arundel County, Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County and Howard County, Maryland.

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