A $50,000 gift from Roadrunner Markets and a late round of contributions and increased pledges from other companies and individuals has put the United Way of Washington County’s annual fundraising campaign more than $26,600 beyond this year’s $1.725 million goal.
Following Roadrunner’s $50,000 contribution on Wednesday, United Way President and CEO Lester Lattany reported total campaign contributions of $1,751,670.83 with three days remaining until the campaign officially closes at midnight on Saturday.
Lattany expressed appreciation to Roadrunner and to “many other” Washington County employers and individual supporters for help ensuring this year’s campaign goal was met and the services of 17 local nonprofit service agencies supported by the United Way will continue.
Roadrunner President Ryan Broyles said his family was aware the campaign was running behind and on Friday contacted the United Way to learn the drive was still $30,000 short. “We decided to make a $50,000 donation to not only help the United Way reach its goal, but put them over the top,” he said.
“The United Way helps so many people here in Washington County, as Washington County residents, we wanted to make sure they have the funds to continue the level of services people in this area depend on,” Broyles said.
On behalf of the United Way board of directors, the 2011 campaign team and the service agency and programs the United Way supports, Lattany thanked the Broyles family and Roadrunner Markets saying, “Your support allows us to provide service to more than 25,000 each month of the year. ... services for children, the elderly, families and individuals in crisis.
Campaign Chairman Becky Hilbert called the campaign’s success “evidence of what a generous and caring community we have.”
“There is no way we could have done this without the support of the United Way board, the United Way staff, the agencies who told their stories ... the volunteers and the companies and people who pledge,” Hilbert said. “I wish I could speak with every one of them, thank them and give them a hug.”
The $1,651,670 campaign total announced on Wednesday also brought an end to a three-year dip in United Way giving that began with the recession of 2008 and caused the United Way to fall from more than $2 million raised in 2007 to just over $1.709 million collected last year.
Three consecutive shortfalls in the annual fundraising drive led the United Way to use its reserve funds to maintain its 2008 level of funding for the agencies through 2009 in order to maintain their services for pepole impacted by the recession, and to impose a 15 percent across the board reduction in its agency allocations in 2010 in order to replace the mandatory reserves.
With the success of this year’s campaign, Lattany said the reserves will be restored and United Way will be able to consider future increases in funding for the agencies’ services.