LIMA — The United Way of Greater Lima honored campaign chairs Jeff Fitzgerald, Brenda Burgy and Ann Miles on Thursday for leading the charge to a total of $1.6 million raised during the 2018 campaign.
The organization celebrated its centennial year with the 2018 campaign.
“The community was fantastic during the 100th anniversary of the United Way,” Fitzgerald said. “To get to a number like $1.6 million is fantastic. That’s an increase from the previous year, and it really is nice living in such a giving community. That money is in the United Way’s partners’ hands, and they’re out serving the community as the next campaign is getting ready to roll on.”
Within those programs, the United Way helped provide more than 23,000 meals through school pantries, more than 2,000 trips to specialized appointments and 13 youth programs with more than n5,000 students registered.
“Those dollars came in from big companies down to individuals who cut us a check,” Fitzgerald said. “They are using those dollars to serve the community, from infants to senior citizens to in between.”
Those funds have been dispersed among 26 programs throughout 19 partner agencies. The 2018 campaign consisted of 411 volunteers, 87 corporate donors and just under 5,000 individual donors.
“We call on companies all over the community, large companies from Husky-Lima Refinery and Procter & Gamble to small companies in town, as well asking for individuals to give,” Fitzgerald said. “We go around to dozens and dozens of businesses.”
Major initiatives in each year’s campaign involve company-held programs, the United Way Day of Caring and lots of phone calls.
“These companies go out and have events … they come out and do all kinds of things within their company to raise the dollars,” Fitzgerald said. “Then they give to us, which we can then disperse to our United Way agencies. A lot of events go on during the year, a lot of calls are made, a little twisting of arms here or there, but we go out and we ask for dollars to support the community.”
Carol Russel and Bob Meredith will be the 2019 campaign co-chairs.
Reach Tara Jones at 567-242-0511.