The Franklin News-Post|
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
|Chinah Helmandollar Jewell says nonprofit work is her passion|
File Photo 2010:
In 2010, Miss Virginia Chinah Helmandollar was presented a t-shirt by Roy Enslow, owner of Bridgewater Marina and president of the local United Way, during a United Way Day at the marina.
Monday, June 30, 2014
Chinah Helmandollar Jewell, former Miss Virginia and a Franklin County High School graduate, is giving back to her hometown by serving as spokesperson for the 2015 United Way campaign.
Jewell, who lives in Moneta, says nonprofit work is her passion.
"United Way does many good things for the community," said Jewell, who works as a tutor for young children at Rocky Mount Elementary. While her summer days find her mostly at Smith Mountain Lake, Jewell's schedule allows ample time for volunteer work for causes close to her heart.
Mission trips, the Ms. Wheelchair Virginia Organization, and now United Way of Franklin County are examples of the causes she supports with her time, talent and extensive list of followers.
"I think everyone should give a little back to where they live and work," Jewell said. "United Way helps ensure that the agencies have the funds and support needed to help our neighbors in need. They help everyone."
Jewell will attend campaign events, visit nonprofit organizations supported by United Way, and appear in a variety of marketing materials, including a recently taped television public service announcement at a television station in Roanoke, said Nancy Bell, United Way executive director.
"We are thrilled to have Chinah join our team this year, especially as she reaches out to young professionals her own age in the community," Bell said. "She's a true professional and a pleasure to work with."
This is United Way's first year having a campaign spokesman, Bell said.
A recently formed campaign committee is working to make the organization more visible in the community after a record low campaign two years ago.
Jewell, as campaign spokesperson, is one of many recommendations of the committee.
"The board has set an ambitious goal of $382,000 for 2015," Bell said.
The 2014 campaign brought in just shy of $300,000, which was higher than 2012 but down from the organization's all-time goal of about $400,000, she said.
"As Chinah describes the important work our agencies do, I think the campaign will get more of the attention it needs in the community, and people will understand the critical work our nonprofits do and how efficient they are at stretching every dollar," Bell added.
Todd Hammock, president of the United Way board of directors, said he is excited about the energy Jewell will bring to the campaign.
"We are delighted that she has agreed to serve in this capacity, and we know the citizens of Franklin County will respond to her in a very positive way," he said. "She's vibrant. She understands the importance of giving back to the community, and she cares about our less fortunate neighbors."
A lifelong resident of Franklin County, Jewell attended James Madison University, where she earned a bachelor's degree in theater. She played herself, Miss Virginia, in the 2010 film "Lake Effects," produced by Life Out Loud Films at Smith Mountain Lake.
She also served as a production assistant in the film adaptation of David Baldacci's book "Wish You Well."
Jewell was chosen Miss Franklin County at age 20. It was her first entry into a pageant, and she admits she was surprised to win the crown.
Jewell served as Miss Smith Mountain Lake the following year and was crowned Miss Virginia in 2009 after the original winner won the Miss America contest.
Jewell is married to Brad Jewell, and she works part-time for the family business, The Cottage Gate.
She is the daughter of Jan Helmandollar of Hardy and Ben Helmandollar, a retired Roanoke County school administrator who lives in Salem.
To schedule a speaking engagement with Chinah Jewell, contact the United Way office at 540-483-4949.