01.24.2022
Some local children in Wheeling, W.Va., will have their summer vacation plans paid for, thanks to a donation from Delaware North’s Wheeling Island Hotel-Casino Racetrack.

The casino made a donation of $6,883.38 to the Salvation Army through its “Game Changer” program, Delaware North’s ongoing initiative across several of its gaming properties in the United States, with the goal of making a positive change in local communities where the gaming venues operate.

Funds were raised by casino patrons who dropped uncashed casino or racing vouchers into donation boxes located on the property. Additionally, Delaware North associates made $5 donations each week for “Dress Down” Fridays.

Regional president Kim Florence presented the donation to Salvation Army Captain Jennifer Van Meter earlier this week.

Van Meter said the donation would go toward the Salvation Army’s summer Camp Happy Land, allowing children to attend a summer camp free of charge. “We are so appreciative for this contribution from the casino,” Van Meter said in an interview with a local newspaper. “These funds will assist us in sending community kids to summer camp. We have a summer camp that’s located in Virginia, but it’s open to our community kids. … This money will enable us to take those kids without having to charge the kids to be there for a week.”

“We’ll take them there, they’ll spend a week in the great outdoors, sleeping in a cabin, fishing, hiking. There’s all kinds of outdoor activities that they can do for an entire week,” she added.

The casino regularly conducts the Game Changer program to collect for local charitable organizations. Through January, February and March, the United Way of the Upper Ohio Valley will receive the next batch of donated funds.

Florence said the program began last year and has had a great impact locally.

“The Game Changer program kicked off in the beginning of 2021, and we’ve been doing this all year long,” she said. “We’re really happy to be providing the Salvation Army with our final contribution for the year.”

PHOTO CAPTION: Kim Florence (right), regional president and general manager of Wheeling Island Hotel-Casino-Racetrack, presents Jennifer Van Meter (left), a captain for the Salvation Army, with funds raised from the latest round of the Game Changer program at the gaming venue.
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