Dowagiac’s Wolverine Mutual Insurance and McLoughlin Family Foundation provide remaining funding for United Way reading program


Dowagiac children, five and under, will benefit from the donation to United Way’s Dolly Parton Imagination Library


United Way of Southwest Michigan is pleased to announce it has received the remaining funding of $8,500 from Dowagiac-based Wolverine Mutual Insurance Co. and the McLoughlin Family Foundation.  The donations are designated for United Way’s Dolly Parton Imagination Library (DPIL), giving Dowagiac children, from birth to five years of age, access to free, age-appropriate books, mailed to their homes every month, to help increase children’s readiness for kindergarten.


Last October, United Way received a lead gift of $4,000 from Lyons Industries.  The remaining gift from Wolverine and McLoughlin helped United Way reach their goal of $12,500, which will help grow the reading program in Dowagiac to impact 100 total newborns for five full years.


Emily McLoughlin from the McLoughlin Family Foundation said: "When the opportunity presented itself to participate with the Dolly Parton Imagination Library initiative two of our members had personal experience with the program and thought it was one of the finest things we could be involved in.  One of our foundation's key objectives is to provide opportunities to children that they would otherwise not have.  This certainly fit that criteria."


United Way funding helps provide this program at no cost to any child residing in Berrien or Cass counties regardless of financial need.  The actual cost to provide this program to the community is about $25 per child, per year. 


“Books! Books! Books!  There is no better way to give your child a head start than to expose them to the world of learning through books.  Open their minds to the possibilities around them and they will grow.  We [Wolverine Mutual Insurance] are pleased to be able to participate in this meaningful initiative.  We all can do nothing better for the next generations than to educate them,” said Jim Laing from Wolverine Mutual Insurance Company.


Individuals or organizations interested in making a gift to United Way to support Dolly Parton Imagination Library, please contact Sharon Polfus ( or 269-932-3455).




United Way of Southwest Michigan fights for the Health, Education and Financial Stability of every person in every community. We have the influence and relationships to make sustainable change a reality. By harnessing resources from corporate, nonprofit and public partners, we provide immediate assistance to our most vulnerable populations while addressing the root causes of our community's longstanding challenges and changing lives for the better. To join the fight—through giving, advocacy and volunteering—visit


Ryan CheeversComment