United Way exceeds campaign goal

 

By Kevin Spradlin
PeeDeePost.com

ROCKINGHAM — It’s official: United Way of Richmond County exceeded its 2014-15 campaign goal and raised $280,420.68 in pledges and donations — exceeding the goal of $250,000. Signs along Highway 74 Business at Richmond Community College in Hamlet, along Highway 1 at Food Lion and on Long Drive in Rockingham help shout the fact.

Submitted photo The United Way of Richmond County exceeded its goal of $250,000 in the recently concluded campaign by raising $280,420.68 in donations and pledges.

Submitted photo
The United Way of Richmond County exceeded its goal of $250,000 in the recently concluded campaign by raising $280,420.68 in donations and pledges.

The campaign ended March 13, said Executive Director Michelle Parrish during a Tuesday morning interview in her East Franklin Street office. During that time, Parrish said the county United Way’s 17 partner agencies served 12,331 individuals. Taking into consideration an individual being served more than once, a total of 147,686 people received assistance through United Way agency-related programming.

Both figures are increases from the previous year’s campaign, when 10836 individuals were served a total of 92,566 times.

“You can tell it’s definitely making an impact here,” Parrish said.

The most charitable business donor prefers not to receive a lot of recognition, Parrish said. The No. 2 commercial contributor through its employees is Perdue. There, workers pledged more than $52,000.

Parrish said this cycle completes her seventh campaign for the nonprofit agency. The local United Way is supervised by a volunteer board of directors and an allocation committee that help determine which agencies receive how much funding. Parrish said this past year, the 17 partner agencies received approximately 88 percent of their requested funding levels.

Nearly 82 percent of the funds raised are earmarked for the 17 partner agencies. The remaining 15 percent goes towards administrative costs and into a fund that helps cover pledges that are made but not realized.

Parrish said agency volunteers ensure the effectiveness of agency partners’ programs by requiring quarterly community investment reports. The reports verify the money is going where it is intended, she said, and making sure the funds are spent in a manner consistent with how United Way officials were told on each grant application.

The work is only just beginning, however. There is no time to rest on the agency’s laurels.

“That day (March 13), it stops,” Parrish said of the annual campaign. “The next day, it starts for the next year.”

The official kickoff for the event is held in September and coincides with the United Way’s Day of Caring.

Parrish said the economy is showing signs of improvement, but that certain figures, such as the unemployment rate, can be misleading because of the way the data is released and what is does and does not include.

“I think economically we are seeing maybe a slow growth, but there’s still a lot of need,” Parrish said.

The United Way of Richmond County distributes grants to 17 local agencies for under four key areas:

Children and Youth

Back Pack Pals, Boy Scouts, Communities in Schools, Cordova School, Girl Scouts, Leak Street Alumni, Richmond County 4-H clubs and Sandhills Children Center.

Health and Wellness

Richmond County Aging Services, Samaritan Colony.

Strengthening and Supporting

Habitat for Humanity of the Sandhills, Richmond County Literacy Council

Crisis Services

American Red Cross, New Horizons Life and Family Services, Our Daily Bread, Rockingham Rescue Squad and the Salvation Army.

 

Filed in: Ellerbe/Norman, Featured News, Hamlet, Hoffman, Latest Headlines, News, Rockingham

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