Making a Difference
For many years, St. Louis Center has been blessed by the many Knights of Columbus councils throughout the state of Michigan.
From donations of both money and time, to event and outings, these men put effort into making a difference in the lives of the people who call St. Louis Center home. Knight of Columbus have been steady supporters of the mission since the beginning. Residents and staff are most grateful for all they’ve done for and given to the Center.
Over the last 10 years, the Knights of Columbus have donated over $1.7 million to St. Louis Center. These donations have been for general operations, a well replacement, and the Knights of Columbus State Council provided money for a match last year, matching $100,000. There have been many other ways they’ve contributed to the Center, as well.
The Knights have also donated their time, hosting events, inviting Fr. Enzo and residents to baseball games, and volunteering at the Center.
Residents and staff are grateful for the many ways the Knights have contributed to St. Louis Center.
Read more about their most popular way of giving (the Tootsie Roll Drive) below.
Knights of Columbus Information
Click on the links below to learn more about the Knights of Columbus mission and other resources.
When you donate to a Knight,
every Tootsie Roll makes someone happy!
A History of the Tootsie Roll Drive
The Knights of Columbus councils have been working hard for more than fifty years by taking donations for people with disabilities, then showing appreciation with a small tootsie roll!
What do you know about the Tootsie Roll Drive?
While these Knights and their families are collecting donations around town, they are also helping to recognize the dignity of every person.
The drive, officially named the Campaign for Helping People with Intellectual Disabilities, is commonly referred to as the Tootsie Roll Drive because for every donation, each donor is offered a piece of candy by the Knight or family member present. It is one of the most popular and successful fundraisers conducted by Knights of Columbus local councils. (Merritt, 2019)
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One Small Tootsie Roll, One Big Impact
St. Louis Center wishes to thank the Knights of Columbus for their ongoing support through the Tootsie Roll Drive. Over the years, St. Louis Center has benefited greatly from the Tootsie Roll Drive, which has been an integral part of making the Center a home for people with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (I/DD). In 2021 alone, the Center received over $59,000 from the Tootsie Roll Drive donations, which continue to roll in.
These donations have directly impacted residents’ day-to-day care, new activities brought to St. Louis Center, existing programs, and the high standards necessary for the up-keep of the facility. We’ve received a large amount of support from the Knights of Columbus, and their efforts have contributed greatly to the Center’s goals and success since the beginning, through the Tootsie Roll Drive and through other generous donations. Residents and staff are grateful for all the ways the Knights of Columbus continue to support St. Louis Center and its mission.
The time the Knights spend in their communities selling Tootsie Rolls is appreciated by all at St. Louis Center. With many of the residents relying on benevolent care, their commitment to the Tootsie Roll drive is of immense importance.
Look for your local Knights of Columbus Council standing outside grocery stores and businesses at the end of April*. Make a donation and enjoy a tootsie roll with a smile!
*Check with the local Knights of Columbus Council in your community for the dates of the Tootsie Roll drive nearest to you.
Your Tootsie Rolls at Work
These smiling faces benefit from Knights of Columbus councils’ strong efforts. The money St. Louis Center receives from these tootsie rolls directly impacts their everyday lives.
St. Louis Center must raise approximately $2.3 million dollars annually to run effectively. Donations from Knights of Columbus Councils’ Tootsie Roll Drives have helped the Center reach our goal on many occasions. These donations have directly impacted the day-to-day care of those who live at St. Louis Center, helping to bring new activities, maintain programs, and continue the high standard of facility up-keep.
About St. Louis Center
St. Louis Center is a private, non-profit 501(c)(3) residential community in Chelsea, MI for individuals with I/DD ages 18 and older.
St. Louis Center is licensed by the State of Michigan and accredited by CARF International, the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities. CARF is an independent, nonprofit accreditor of health and human services.
“To change the world, we must be good to those who cannot repay us.” – Pope Francis