United Way at 27% of goal after 2nd report meeting

By FAITH HUFFMAN, News-Telegram News Editor

Oct. 21, 2008 - Hopkins County United Way has raised $40,805.54, or about 27 percent of its $150,000 campaign goal, as of the second report meeting Tuesday.

That puts this year's far ahead of last year's pace, when only $34,500 had been collected at this point in the fund drive, according to Executive Secretary Charlotte Henderson.

"I've been at several places this last week, speaking to industries. I explain to them that there's more need in these economic times. They buy into it," said John Sellers, HCUW campaign chair. "I've also had individuals come up to me and talk about United Way. Individuals have said they're going to bring checks to contribute. That's wonderful, and so encouraging. We're just so grateful for every bit."

Campaign officials also reminded of the annual United Way Hamburger Cook Out to be held Thursday, Oct. 30, in the parking lot behind Alliance Bank. Three of the local banks will again be putting the event on, in addition to a new sponsor this year. Southwest Dairy Museum will be providing ice cream sandwiches to go along with the burger.

A number of campaign workers handed in donation packets collected over the past week, while others reported businesses requesting more time to get pledges in. Joel Tiemeyer handed in all of his packets today, and Coy Vickers handed in his last packet as well. Debra Evans said she collected from the courthouse and was told the donation packet from the sheriff's office should be ready Wednesday. Carolyn McKinney reported that of the packets she'd collected already, all have met 100 percent of their goal.

Grocery Supply Company pledged $2,000 and company employees pledged another $11,200. Freddie Taylor pledged VF Outlet mall's usual $500 donation, according to Sellers.

Representatives at United Parcel Service noted that while the company is still working on collections from employees -- about half of the pledge cards given to employees are still out -- the company has already raised around $4,000. Coca-Cola Bottling Company is also still working on its donation, according to Henderson

Brookshire's indicated to campaign worker Denise McCarty that "we can count of them."

Lynda Hager said the Bankers Clearinghouse will again sponsor a cash drawing as an incentive for employees of local banks who contribute to HCUW. City National Bank is close to being through, and has passed the employee goal already, according to Sellers. Pilgrim's Bank's packet isn't ready to turn in yet, Hager noted. Campaign workers Hager and Linda Gallagher report Alliance Bank hopes to turn in employee donations at the Oct. 29 report meeting, but could require as long as Nov. 4 to finish collecting donations. If the banks all get their packets in by next week, the Bankers Clearinghouse drawing will be held at Tuesday's meeting. If not, the drawing will be postponed until the November meeting, Hager noted.

Como-Pickton school employees were again praised for continued support of United Way. HCUW sets a goal of $100 per school for all Hopkins County rural schools. Last year, Como-Pickton turned in $1,350 in contributions to HCUW. Already this year, $900 has been pledged by C-P staff, and campaign workers are still accepting donations with the goal of matching or exceeding last year's total, Henderson noted.

Individual donations may be given to any HCUW campaign worker or mailed to HCUW Headquarters, P.O. Box 735, Sulphur Springs, TX 75483. Memorial donations may also be made to HCUW, in memory or honor of loved ones and friends.

Anyone interested in scheduling a speaker to talk to a business or group about HCUW may contact Henderson at 903-885-6829 or Sellers at 903-885-7523. For more information about HCUW, benefitting agencies, the current campaign or making a donation contact Henderson.

The Chamber of Commerce's board room won't be availalble for next Tuesday's HCUW meeting, so Carolyn McKinney, who oversees the Southwest Dairy Center, offered to host the meeting at The Creamery. The meeting will begin at 9:30 a.m. All campaign workers are encouraged to collect as many donation packets as they can and hand them in during the Oct. 28 meeting.

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