Mutual Aid Facebook Group Creator Receives Community Recognition
Murray State University’s College of Education and Human Services (COEHS) selected a Murray woman to receive the “COVID-19 Hero” award for the creation of a local mutual-aid Facebook group, started in the beginning of the pandemic.
The COEHS Sparks Lecture committee, comprised of five individuals, reviewed all 45 nominees for the award. according to their nominations and predetermined criteria. COEHS marketing coordinator Paige Rogers said Mary Scott Buck, who was nominated by another local resident, was selected due to her setting an example of what a community can accomplish through unity and good will.
“Her service to the community has been not only innovative, but necessary. She saw a need where there was one,” Rogers said. “She took social media and facilitated this group of community members who are helping one another and it’s really just shown the power of community within the pandemic and how when we come together, we’re better off.”
The Calloway County Collective Facebook group lets community members post a need and receive responses from other members who offer to assist or offer recommendations for available resources. Buck said she got the idea to create a Facebook group from the numerous posts she saw on her own Facebook feed.
“So many people in my news feed had the same questions,” Buck said. “They were trying to find the same things and in my mind I thought, ‘Why can’t we just work together on this and help each other in real time?’”
Buck recently announced a formal partnership with United Way of Murray-Calloway County, following a unanimous vote by the local United Way’s board of directors, to absorb Calloway County Collective as a division of their organization. Buck said the group will continue to function as it has in the past but now with the added resources and connections from the United Way and the group’s new 501(c)3 status.
Buck said watching the Calloway County Collective grow is exciting, and she looks forward to what the future has in store.
“I never had an intention of starting a nonprofit or anything like this, but it's a privilege to be able to do all these things,” she said. “It's a blessing when you realize how many people you can reach and how many people are benefitting just from small acts of kindness.”
Donations to the Calloway County Collective may be made by checks written to “United Way Murray-Calloway County” with “Calloway County Collective” written in the memo.
Buck said she is eager to continue learning about the nonprofit sector and how to provide a high-impact service to Calloway County community members.
The award will be presented to Buck during a virtual meeting Thursday at 5 p.m. CST.