Annual Campaign reaches halfway point off a strong start

 CHAMPAIGN, ILL (12/12/13) - It’s not just about the giving: it’s about why you give. Local residents have responded wholeheartedly to United Way’s goal to better our County in the areas of Education, Health & Well-Being, Financial Stability and Community Basics.

 
United Way of Champaign County has received over $2 million in pledged donations as of December 12, 2013. This is 59% of the way to the yearly fundraising campaign goal of $3.4 million. “We are encouraged by the positive community response we’ve seen this campaign year and hope the upward trend continues,” said Mike Ross, Campaign Co-Chair. The campaign is ahead of last year’s pace and this is the earliest that United Way has reached $2 million. “We hope that people who have not yet participated will join us by making a gift to support critical programs in our community” added Emmie Fisher, Campaign Co-Chair.
 
The need for nonprofit services has risen. This year United Way received $4 million in funding requests from programs that are working to improve the community in the areas of Education, Health & Well-Being, Financial Stability and Community Basics. “This is the largest amount of financial requests we’ve ever seen - more than double from our last funding cycle two years ago” said Sue Grey, President & CEO.
 
“We want to be responsive to increased community need and continue with innovative initiative work, such as the Emergency Shelter for Homeless Families and Frances Nelson Dental Clinic. We have set an aggressive five year plan to increase our campaign totals. It’s not just about raising money – it’s about raising the level of services available to those who need it most. The first step in that plan is reaching this year’s campaign goal,” Grey continued.
 
Workplace payroll deduction giving campaigns are finishing up for the year. “We are so thankful for generous support from over 200 workplaces. When each of us gives even just a little bit, we can make a big difference,” said Ross.
 
For tax-deduction on 2013 taxes, gifts need to be made by December 31, 2013. United Way’s annual campaign runs through June 30. United Way offers online giving via their website at www.uwayhelps.org. Gifts of cash or check can be mailed to the office, 404 W Church St., Champaign. For more giving options, call United Way at 217-352-5151.
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