United Way fund drive off to a fast start

2007 campaign ahead of last year’s pace after first report meeting

By FAITH HUFFMAN | News-Telegram News Editor

Oct 16, 2007 - Hopkins County United Way is off to a good start for this year’s campaign.

Staff Photo by Angela Pitts

Hopkins County United Way Campaign Chairman Randal Voss (back) is "keeping it fun" during the United Way workers' first report meeting this morning at the Chamber of Commerce office.

At the first report meeting this morning, donations turned in by campaign workers were almost 50 percent ahead of last year’s pace at the same point in the campaign.

Last year, a record year for HCUW, $10,604 in donations were turned in at the first meeting. This year, donations total $15,876 and counting, according to Charlotte Henderson, HCUW executive secretary.

�We�re excited we�re off to such a good start,� said Randal Voss, HCUW campaign chair. �I hope we can keep up that pace.�

Campaign workers reported most contributors meeting or exceeding their goals, with only a few not giving at all.

Campaign worker Gina Law reported “wonderful success” with the campaign packets she has received. Billy Crowson reported that he and his wife have been “pretty successful," with all but two contributors meeting goals set for them. Those two have not contributed to HCUW in the past, and one said while the business is unable to give at this point, they might be able to do so later in the year. 

Henderson noted that donations are accepted throughout the year.

Donna Wallace reported that two of the contributors she had collected donations from had met their goals.

Jan Chapman turned in half of the packets she was assigned. All had met their goal.

Cathy Chitwood reported for herself and two other workers who were unable to attend the meeting. Overall, they had four packets in. Community Bank’s employees, who are fewer in number this year than last, contributed more money than in the 2006 drive. She’s still waiting on the company match to turn in the packet.

Deanna Landers, reporting for herself and two others, said Voss Allstate Insurance and Town & Country Cleaners both exceeded their goals. Campaign Chairman Voss is owner of the Allstate office, and Bob Weaver, campaign president, owns Town & Country, which Landers said is an indication that both campaign officials “really believe in the goal” of United Way, with each donating above the expected amount to help meet this year’s $145,000 goal.

Coy Vicars also reported that he turned in four packets from donors who met their goal. Some had even put in additional money.

The only rough spot Vicars reported was confusion regarding Boy Scouts, which until a few years ago received funding from HCUW annually.

HCUW stipulates agencies benefitting from the annual campaign drive should not hold a fund-raiser during the same period as the HCUW  campaign. But Boy Scouts of America officials opted to host their annual popcorn fund-raiser during September and October instead of receiving funds from HCUW, citing the potential of the popcorn sale to raise more funds than HCUW, Henderson said.

�There are no problems between Boy Scouts and United Way,� Weaver said. �Scouts just opted to sell popcorn and other things instead.�

Campaign officers also noted that Boy Scouts “have the option to come back at any time” to request funding from HCUW.

Gina Law, whose son and husband are involved in Scouts, noted that it’s simply an unfortunate occurrence that the “campaign just happens to fall during the fund-raiser.”

Voss said the community continues to do a good job promoting the annual campaign and stepping up to meet the need, which has increased along with living costs annually.  He noted that in his business he'd had occasion to work with a number of the agencies which benefit from HCUW.

�It�s important to give to United Way,� Voss said. "Some of the agencies depend on the funding to stay in business, which is helping other people."

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