The 2013 United Way Campaign has raised $341,481 so far this year, or 26 percent of the $1,315,000 goal.
Deb Kathman, campaign co-chair, said it will take a concerted effort from everyone to reach the goal and ensure human service programs continue in southern Chautauqua County.
"This month is crucial for the campaign," Mrs. Kathman said. "Whether you're stocking shelves, teaching students, or operating a cash register, we need the entire community to pitch in. This is our home, and we need to continue to invest in the services that keep our children safe, our seniors healthy, and our families secure. That's what a donation to United Way does."
The United Way of Southern Chautauqua County helps support 18 partner agencies and 39 local programs. Every program that receives funding must show measurable results in the areas of education, income, and health. Each spring, more than 40 volunteers visit each of the agencies to make sure the dollars that are donated are going where they're needed most. Deke Kathman, campaign co-chair, said it is a rigorous process that holds the agencies accountable.
"Every dollar that's donated to the campaign is carefully allocated to the program where it can do the most good," Kathman said. "Our volunteers do a tremendous job of, not only helping us raise money, but also giving that money away. No donated dollar is wasted, and every penny stays in this area. That's important to keep in mind."
Deb Kathman said they hope to wrap up the campaign sooner this year, so they have a better idea of where things stand in December.
"We really would like everything in before December," Mrs. Kathman said. "We know people are busy during the holiday season, and that's why there's a purposeful push on the part of our volunteers to get everything back to United Way in a timely fashion."
Deke Kathman said the volunteers are key to the success of the campaign.
"These men and women have dedicated themselves for the next several months to pound the pavement, make phone calls, and follow up with accounts," Kathman said. "This is extra time away from their own families to help us raise the necessary funds to keep our community healthy, vibrant, and safe. They really are the motor that keep this whole engine running, and their support is crucial to the success of this campaign."
For more information about the United Way or the 2013 campaign, call 483-1561, visit www.uwayscc.org, visit the United Way of Southern Chautauqua County's Facebook page visit the United Way's page on Twitter at @uwayscc.