Meters with a Mission now in service for local nonprofits

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Fort Wayne’s retired parking meters are now being used for a new purpose: helping local nonprofits weather COVID-19. Twenty-seven “Meters with a Mission” installed across downtown Fort Wayne will collect donations from the public for 27 nonprofit organizations.

The Meters with a Mission program was initiated by Fort Wayne City Clerk Lana Keesling. She enlisted Greater Fort Wayne Inc., the local chamber of commerce, to find businesses–each one adopting a meter and selecting a nonprofit organization to benefit from the donations. Some companies are offering to match the donated funds up to a designated amount.

“This community pulls together time and time again,” said Brenda Gerber Vincent, VP of community and corporate impact at GFW Inc. “Fundraising events are the lifeblood of so many nonprofits, but with the pandemic, large gatherings just aren’t possible. This is a way for local government, the business community, and our residents to come together and provide help to nonprofits when they need it the most.”

“I appreciate GFW Inc. for partnering with us on this project,” Keesling said. “The corporate inclusiveness and the artistic aspects make this project exciting for the community, and that is what is driving it. This is a community project that’s fun and helps nonprofits in this difficult time.”

Nearly all of the 27 meters have been installed. Here are the nonprofits, their sponsors, and meter locations:

NonprofitSponsoring OrganizationMeter Location
Allen County SPCAMcMahon’s Best One Tire & Auto CareStarbucks - 1020 S. Calhoun St.
ARCH (Architecture and Community Heritage), Inc.MKM architecture + designMKM architecture + design - 119 W. Wayne St.
Arts UnitedLake City BankLake City Bank - 818 S. Harrison St.
Big Brothers Big SistersPremier BankThe Hoppy Gnome - 203 E. Berry St.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Fort WayneCity of Fort WayneCitizens Square - 200 E. Berry St.
The Brandon FoundationProximoProximo - 898 S. Harrison St.
Bring It Push It Own ItIntegrated Talent SolutionsThe Harrison - 301 W. Jefferson Blvd.
Camp Red CedarCarson LLPThe Harrison - 301 W. Jefferson Blvd.
The Carriage HouseJH SpecialtyThe Harrison - 301 W. Jefferson Blvd.
CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children)ShindigzShindigz Place (west entrance) - 919 S. Harrison St.
Christ Child SocietyTim Didier MeatsRiegel's Pipe & Tobacco Shop - 624 S. Calhoun St.
Easterseals Arc of Northeast IndianaOld NationalLincoln Tower - 116 E. Berry St.
Fort Wayne UNITEDAmbassador EnterprisesPromenade Park near the Convergence statue – 202 W. Superior St.
Fort Wayne Urban LeagueBarnes & ThornburgDeBrand Fine Chocolates - 878 S. Harrison St.
Friends and Family Fund for Southeast Fort WayneThe FindThe Find - 133 W. Wayne St.
GFW Inc. Employing People with Disabilities InitiativeAWS FoundationSouthwest corner of West Columbia & South Calhoun streets
GiGi's Playhouse Fort WayneShambaugh & Son, LPConey Island - 133 W. Main St.
Girlz Rock, Inc.PNCEast entrance to the PNC Bank Building - South Calhoun Street between Main & Berry streets
The LeagueElevatus ArchitectureWells Fargo building - 111 E. Wayne St.
Mad Anthonys Children's Hope HouseDon Ayres Honda and AcuraSTAR Bank - 127 W. Berry
NeighborLinkFortezza CoffeeFortezza Coffee - 819 S. Calhoun St.
NAACP Youth of Fort WayneQuinton L. Ellis P.C.Lincoln Tower - 116 E. Berry St.
Out of a Jam Inc.The Hoppy GnomeThe Hoppy Gnome - 203 E. Berry St.
Southeast Area Community Development Corporation / Community Development Corporation of Northeast IndianaFort Wayne Ink Spot Big Apple Pizza - 120 W. Wayne St.
Summit Equestrian CenterStrebig Construction, Inc.The Porch off Calhoun - 816 S. Calhoun St.
Super ShotPHPThe Harrison - 301 W. Jefferson Blvd.
TurnstoneSummit City ChevroletJK O'Donnell's - 121 W. Wayne St.

Each meter has been decorated with eye-catching designs by the sponsoring organization or the nonprofit. Signage inside the dome of each meter indicates the beneficiary and sponsor for that meter.

As donations come in, the City of Fort Wayne’s Parking Enforcement Department will collect the proceeds and forward them to the appropriate nonprofits. The meters are expected to be in place through the end of 2020.

About Greater Fort Wayne Inc.

Greater Fort Wayne (GFW) Inc. serves Fort Wayne and Allen County, Indiana, as its primary point of contact for economic growth. GFW Inc. focuses on prosperity and community vibrancy through economic development, advocacy, programs, and resources that support business success, leadership development, graduate retention, and community engagement.