United Way announces more funds for agenciesPublished 3:03am Saturday, February 22, 2014
The United Way of Bainbridge supported 12 agencies last year — helping them provide needed financial support for their programs. Among the 12 are organizations like the American Red Cross, the Bainbridge-Decatur County YMCA, Friendship House, the local chapter of the Salvation Army, the Samaritan Counseling Center and more.
Upon learning of the excess money raised, the United Way Board voted to distribute those funds to the 12 agencies.
“Thanks to the strong support of more than 45 companies running workplace campaigns, corporate giving and donations by many generous individuals, the United Way of Bainbridge and Decatur County was able to meet and exceed our 2013 fundraising goal of $65,000,” Kim Walden, United Way Board Chairman said. “While we weren’t able to fully meet all of our Partner Agencies requested funding needs we are very pleased to announce that we will be able to provide our United Way Funded Agencies with some (much needed) extra funds in addition to our pledged support for their community programs. We are very fortunate to have a great volunteer United Way Board of Directors and we will continue to work to keep growing support for the United Way campaign so we can keep funding these hardworking agencies and all they do to help those in need in our community.”
Walden said for the United Way to raise more than their campaign is something rare.
“In the past few years due to the economy there are lots of United Ways that have not been able to meet their goals with local companies that have gone out of business or employees that have lost their jobs and were giving to United Way,” Walden said. “So it is rare that we were able to do this, I think it is a reflection of how our community continues to support United Way.”
Walden said she believes the success comes partly from the organization being able to bring awareness to their campaign in the community and live our their motto of, “Give, advocate, volunteer.”
She said five of the companies that brought major support through this campaign were BASF, Southwest Georgia Farm Credit, Shaw Industries and the Decatur County Board of Education, as well as hundreds of individuals who gave donations of all sizes.
But Walden noted United Way, though exceeding its goal was not able to fund any one of its agencies 100 percent.
“We aren’t able to meet all of their needs, there is still a lot of unmet need and we hope to next year to be able to support them even more,” Walden said.
One agency that was the recipient of the campaign funds was the Salvation Army. Salvation Army director Stacey Warren said she was thrilled to learn of the additional funding.
“With the programs that we use the money for we help people pay water and light bills and any medical bills when needed, we fill our food pantry when necessary,” Warren said. “The funds we get help with that and these funds will help us help additional people. I was so excited to get the call from Kim yesterday. It is wonderful for united way but also for all of the agencies.”