By Steve Svetovich
Keystone UNICO is hosting a Flea Market and Bake Sale Saturday,,April 23, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Dunmore Community Center and Activity Hub, 1414 Monroe Ave., Dunmore.
Mary Lou Karlack, Dunmore, and Lenore Latarewicz are co-chairpersons for this fundraiser.
The fundraising event is part of UNICO’s mission to raise monies for local charities.
UNICO’s motto is “Service Above Self.”
UNICO stands for Unity, Neighborliness, Integrity, Charity, Opportunity.
Latarewicz and Karlack said UNICO’s chapters devote much of their energies to supporting local charities that serve the local communities.
“We encourage everyone to join us as we work together to make a contribution to the service of others.
“We would like to invite all our friends in the community to this fundraising event.”
The majority of the 164 members of the Keystone Chapter of UNICO are from or live in Dunmore.
John Mecca, Dunmore, is president of the Keystone Chapter of UNICO.
UNICO is the largest Italian American service organization in the United States.
The UNICO national office is in Fairfield, New Jersey.
“We are very hopeful the community will come to support us,” said Latarewicz, a five-year UNICO Charter member.
“We think it is wonderful to use the Dunmore Community Center and Activity Hub to help us with our needs to raise funds for local charities. It is wonderful to obtain the Dunmore Activity Hub for this affair.
“It is a beautiful facility and we are happy to support it. We are thrilled they support us and we support them.
“We expect this to be a successful fundraiser. We previously did this in 2014. It takes some work, but it is well worth it.
“Our annual pig roast is a major fundraiser as well as our annual golf tournament which supports the local YMCA in Dunmore.
“We do this to raise money to support the numerous charities we provide monies to throughout the year. We support a lot of charities in Dunmore. We are a part of UNICO National.
“We are constantly trying to raise funds for local charities.”
UNICO was organized in Waterbury, Connecticut in 1922 when a group of Italian Americans led by Dr. Anthony P. Vastola began providing service in the community. The idea then spread to several other cities in the East where additional Chapters were chartered. The first UNICO convention was held in New York City in 1930. On July 4, 1947, at a convention in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, UNICO National was born.
The UNICO National Mission Statement is: To promote and enhance the image of Italian Americans; For members to be of service to the community; To promote Italian heritage and culture; To promote, support and assist charitable, scientific, cultural, educational and literary projects; To promote members’ interest in public welfare; And to cooperate with others in civic, social and cultural development.
UNICO grants scholarships, promotes Italian study chairs, observes Columbus Day with appropriate activities, supports programs aiding underprivileged and handicapped children, community civic activities, mental health, cancer and Cooley’s anemia research. It promotes good fellowship among members.
UNICO is non-political and non-sectarian.
Latarewicz was chairperson for the event in 2014.
Latarewicz and Karlack are working very hard to make the event this year a huge success at the Dunmore Community Center and Activity Hub. Both are working very hard to make the Flea Market and Bake Sale a very worthwhile event to the community.
It is an event for the whole community to enjoy. And all monies raised go to assist local charities.