Monday, March 20, 2023

Community briefs

| February 5, 2023 12:00 AM

Youths invited to race scale model cars

Youths ages 4 through 15 are invited to bring their favorite Hot Wheels, Johnny Lightning and Matchbox or original 1/64 scale cars to showcase and compete in OHS’ Body Shop’s inaugural DieCast Nationals on Feb. 18.

Registration for the free event begins at 9 a.m. the day of the event at OHS located at 3560 U.S. 93 S, Kalispell. Eliminations start at 10:30 a.m. Races will be divided into three age groups 4 to 6 year-olds, 7 to 9 year-olds and 10 to 15 year-olds. Participants should be accompanied by an adult.

Each participant will be eligible to race one car in one age class in addition to entering a car into a car show. Trophies and medals will be awarded to the top three. Prizes will also be given out to participants. There will be free hot chocolate and apple cider for attendees and food trucks onsite.

For more information contact organizer Stewart See at 752-8202, or

Whitefish Community Foundation scholarships open Feb. 27

Whitefish Community Foundation will offer six scholarship opportunities for high school seniors and graduates who intend to enroll in a post-secondary educational institution this fall. The online application for all opportunities opens Feb. 27 and closes April 6 at 5 p.m.

The Dorothy and Luther Campbell Scholarship will award one $2,500 scholarship to a student who is a graduate of a high school in Flathead County or Lincoln County. The Campbells created the fund in 2022 as a way to give back to the community they cherish.

The Jean Atkinson Driggers Scholarship will award one $2,500 scholarship to a student who attended Olney-Bissell School. The scholarship was created in memory of Jean Atkinson Driggers, who taught at Olney-Bissell for 25 years and was passionate about helping children achieve their highest potential.

The Montana Coffee Traders Scholarship will award two $1,000 scholarships. One scholarship will be awarded to an eligible Montana Coffee Traders employee, child or legal dependent of an eligible employee. The second scholarship will be awarded to a Flathead Valley resident.

The Glacier Restaurant Group – R.I.S.E. Scholarship will award two $2,500 scholarships. Applicants must be an eligible employee of Glacier Restaurant Group or the child or legal dependent of an eligible Glacier Restaurant Group employee.

Applicants may access the online application and review the eligibility requirements at

For assistance, call Whitefish Community Foundation at 406-863-1781 or email

Whitefish Community Foundation helps businesses and individuals establish scholarship programs as part of the organization’s work to provide effective ways for donors to make charitable contributions that improve the quality of life in the Flathead Valley.

Annual Feed Love food drive and fundraiser

In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, North Valley Food Bank in Whitefish is holding its third-annual winter food drive and fundraiser: Feed Love.

North Valley Food Bank saw a 75% increase in overall food pantry visits in 2022. Running through Feb. 17, North Valley Food Bank is collecting “comfort food” for the growing number of neighbors that need assistance through this long winter season. The food bank is asking for non-perishable hearty food donations such as soups, stews, pastas, nut butters, cornbread mix, baking supplies and other items that will help individuals, families and seniors thrive in the cold weather.

Food donations can be dropped off in donation bins at Whitefish restaurants, cafes, coffee houses and grocery stores, or in the large outdoor collection box at the food bank located at 251 Flathead Ave.Look for the bright red Feed Love posters at participating businesses, many of whom are running a Feed Love special with proceeds from the sales going to North Valley Food Bank. Let’s spread the love by supporting local businesses while supporting our neighbors in need.

North Valley Food Bank is also inviting people to Feed Love by sponsoring a family’s weekly groceries through a donation of $100 or more on the food bank’s website,

Cheerful Heart serves Lake County cancer patients

The Polson Lion’s Club donated $971.85 to Cheerful Heart in support of the organization’s mission to help cancer patients in Lake County who are currently in treatment.

Cheerful Heart is one of three local charities that received funds from the Lion’s Club, as it disbands in Polson.

Cheerful Heart services include transportation to treatment or medical appointments, running errands, preparing meals, walking dogs, or tasks as requested. The organization provides volunteers for the Oncology Clinics in Polson and Ronan. Currently St. Luke’s in Ronan, is seeing patients via telehealth. Cheerful Heart volunteers serve soup on Tuesdays at the Polson clinic. Both clinics carry inventories of head coverings, Knitted Knockers (breast prosthesis) and ComfyChemo shirts available for no charge to patients.

The Cheerful Heart Support Group meets from noon to 1 p.m., on the second and fourth Wednesdays in the Leahy Conference Room, on the third floor of St. Joseph Medical Center.

Cheerful Heart, Inc., a 501c3 non-profit, has served cancer patients in Lake County since 2002. Those with questions or needs, call 883-3070, email, or visit . Mailing address for the organization is Cheerful Heart, P.O. Box 688, Polson, MT 59860.

New program connects Montana stroke survivors

The Brain Injury Alliance of Montana recently launched a new program, “Montana Stroke Survivor Connections,” with the goal of creating community by fostering compassion and connection for stroke survivors across the state.

The program was born out of an expressed need for more support for stroke survivors as they navigate the “new normal” of post-stroke life.

Life after a stroke is often confusing, overwhelming and frustrating, especially when survivors feel like their friends and loved ones cannot empathize with their struggles after their stroke.

The new program pairs a recent stroke survivor with a “peer mentor” who can provide guidance and reassurance during the stroke recovery process.

The peer mentors are long-term stroke survivors and draw on their own lived experiences to provide support to the recent survivor.

“The number one thing we hear is that stroke survivors have really needed to hear ‘things are going to be OK’ and ‘I have been through this too,’” said program coordinator Ty Evers.

“I believe that alone is making a huge impact and is giving survivors the motivation and excitement to keep pushing through the recovery process.”

Although the program is specifically geared towards assisting recent stroke survivors, peer volunteers will also benefit from the program through using their own challenges to help others, potentially fostering new friendships and partnerships with peers across the state. Survivors and their mentors will connect through a series of phone calls.

Mentors receive guidance about what to ask and discuss during the calls but are encouraged to tailor the conversations to fit the experiences of their mentee.

The program is open to all Montana stroke survivors and their caregivers. The Brain Injury Alliance of Montana is also still recruiting volunteers for the program.

The Brain Injury Alliance of Montana is the only nonprofit in the state dedicated to brain injury prevention, advocacy and education.

To learn more about the program, call the Brain Injury Alliance of Montana at 406-541-6442, or visit the website at

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