United Way of Midland County announced that they will be extending the community campaign into November and are encouraged by the current results. The organization is reporting pledges totaling $3,873,871 raised, which represents 86% of the overall campaign goal of $4.5 million.
“We could not be more thankful for how the community is showing up and stepping up to provide hope,” said Holly Miller, President & CEO of United Way of Midland County. “The needs are greater than ever and so are the hearts of this community. We are inspired by the results to date and know that 2020 has forced many organizations to launch their campaigns later than usual. The extension allows them to continue to inspire their teams to invest their time, talents or even a portion of their paycheck.”
Miller added that several long-standing United Way partners have just launched or will be lauching their workplace campaigns, including: TCF Bank, Savant, Deloitte, Members First Credit Union and others.
While workplace campaigns are still underway, local businesses are making exciting announcements of their own. Serendipity Road hosted a raffle where people could enter to win a copper art piece made by local artist State of Copper. All proceeds from the raffle are going towards the campaign.
“We wanted to help United Way in some way,” said Julia Kepler, owner of Serendipity Road and neighboring store Joyful Tantrum. “I sit on one of the United Way community impact panels for self sufficiency, so I understand all of the good work United Way does with partner agencies.”
United Way measures success in how lives are changed, and they do not do this work alone. They partner with 25 dedicated nonprofits and invest in quality programs that show measurable outcomes every year. Together, they create new solutions to old problems and join with people from all walks of life to put those solutions into action.
“You may not realize that volunteers determine how the community’s investment will be allocated,” shared Miller. “Each year our volunteer panels invest nearly 30 hours reviewing applications, posing questions and hearing from our partners. Based on what they learn, these volunteers make funding recommendations to the United Way board.”
This process ensures that there is a high level of accountability and demonstrates the impactful ways that lives are being changed by the community’s investment.
Individual and retiree gifts are also continuing to bolster the campaign and showcase how every gift makes an impact. Retirees show their ongoing support and have contributed an impactful $613,000 so far, with additional gifts rolling in daily.
The younger generation of donors are also lending their voices and raising their hands. This week, Young Leaders United members participated in a virtual lunch and learn series titled “The Impact of 2020.” They heard from agency leaders about the increased needs and the innovative ways agencies are working together to help the community amidst this year’s challenges.
“As a group of young professionals in Midland County, we are eager to support our community and give back,” said Kristi Bower, new business director at Arbury Insurance and chair of Young Leaders United executive council. “Action starts with awareness, and events like this webinar equip our Young Leaders United members with knowledge so we can best focus our efforts on initiatives that can help our neighbors.”
Young Leaders United encourages the spirit of philanthropy and volunteerism among emerging community leaders in their 20s and 30s. They are committed to their families, their careers, and their community. To become a Young Leaders United member, you must be a young professional who donates $250 or more annually to United Way as an individual or with a spouse. Those who donate $500+ are also recognized as Young Leadership Circle members. Initiatives that young leaders have championed include a community garden, March is Reading Month, community food distributions and much more.
With the campaign extending past Oct. 30, you can still make a difference.
“Your gift matters,” said Kali Cochran, Director of Investor Relations at United Way of Midland County. “It matters to a lot of people. To our neighbors, our colleagues, and our community. The needs are greater than we’ve seen in a generation. It’s not too late to give back and change a life.”