Campaign reflects community’s generosity

Bartholomew County residents, you deserve a pat on the back. You stepped up and made the local United Way’s latest fundraising campaign a record-smashing success.

A strong push raised the final tally to $4.2 million. It topped last year’s record of $4.08 million, and marked the fourth-consecutive record campaign.

The annual per capita giving rate of $54 per person is likely to make Bartholomew County the state leader for the 12th year in a row.

This doesn’t happen without strong support and a firm belief in the United Way’s mission to help others.

United Way’s annual campaign supports 20 nonprofit agencies that operate 32 programs serving youths to adults — all in an effort to create better lives for residents. United Way’s figures show that 1-in-3 local households struggle to make ends meet financially. That’s why the agency’s top priorities are financial stability — including helping people get full-time jobs with insurance — education and health.

Some of you might be long-time United Way donors who have seen the value for years in providing financial support. That continued generosity is impressive.

However, some of you probably got a hands-on feel for the help United Way provides during the Sept. 11 Day of Service and Remembrance — organized by United Way and the Volunteer Action Center. A record 1,700 people completed 30 volunteer projects across the county. If your decision to donate was influenced by that participation, it is to be commended.

Donors, take pride in what you have done. By giving to United Way, you have helped improve the lives of fellow county residents. The community is better as a result.