State Auto Re-Ups Sponsorship

Columbus-based State Auto Insurance Companies has doubled down on its commitment to Homeport, providing for the second year in a row $10,000 to cover bus tours that illustrate the organization’s mission and impact.

The funds allow Homeport to tell its story on how it is helping some of Central Ohio’s forgotten or vulnerable through housing and programs, said Stephanie Meredith, community relations manager for State Auto.

“Our seniors need nice, safe, affordable housing. Sometimes the seniors are the most overlooked,” Meredith said.

Bus tour participants can also learn how children benefit from out of school programs including after school and summer programs at Homeport owned apartment communities.

“It is really touching when you can see the children come home after school and be safe in their neighborhood,” Meredith said.

Meredith on Dec. 22 presented the $10,000 check for 2016 to outgoing Homeport President/CEO Amy Klaben and Interim President/CEO Bruce Luecke.

The first 2016 “Strengthening Communities” tour is Jan. 20. Subsequent tours have been scheduled for Jan. 29, Feb. 16 and March 3.

The State Auto grant covers transportation, printing, boxed lunches and drinks for the tours. Participants learn how Homeport has revitalized neglected neighborhoods,  built affordable, energy-efficient homes for seniors on limited income, and provided safe, fun learning environments for children.

Several Homeport Board members invited their business associates and friends on tours in 2015, including Board member and community activist Karen Fiorile.

“For me, the tours put the important work Homeport does into context,” Fiorile said.

“We all know about the need for safe, affordable housing in our community. Witnessing what Homeport does, block by block and complex by complex, confirms the positive impact Homeport has in our Columbus neighborhoods,” Fiorile added.

Individuals interested in the tours are encouraged to contact Homeport Development and Events Manager Julie Naporano at or 614 545-4824.

"The tour can be customized to fit your organization's interests and schedule. Contact us today to discuss what would be the most meaningful experience for your group," Naporano said.