UGF makes final pushBy BRENT MAZE,
The United Givers Fund is making one final push for donations to help 26 local agencies this year.
Van Lucas, campaign drive chairman, said that while donations are running behind where they normally are in previous years, they are confident that they will be able to make a strong push in the final months of the 2017-2018 campaign.
“It is extremely important that we are able to make our fundraising goal,” Lucas said. “Twenty-six local agencies are the recipients of this drive, which eliminates the need for separate drives for local needs in fire departments, youth programs, sports programs, the Red Cross and the Salvation Army.”
The United Givers Fund was founded many years ago by several community leaders who wanted to raise money for each of the local programs. Lucas said each of the organizations were flooding local businesses with fundraisers, so they thought they could pool greater resources by combining their efforts.
“We felt like we could have more success for each of these agencies if we worked together, and then they wouldn’t have to continuously ask the community for help,” Lucas said. “This has been very successful over the years, and instead of having numerous fundraisers, we just have one fundraiser to help all local charities.”
Betty Thames, chairwoman of the United Givers Fund board of directors, said they sent out letters asking local businesses for their help in November, and perhaps a few residents had been overlooked.
“If residents have not received the letter we mailed in November or your schedule has kept you from responding, you are urged to mail or take your annual contribution to the Newton Chamber of Commerce office,” Thames said. “Contributions are tax deductible and are very necessary for keeping our town and area the place we want it to be.”
While the drive is being handled by the Newton Chamber of Commerce, it benefits all of Newton County, including all county fire departments, county sports programs and other agencies.
Lucas added that all of the donations go directly to the 26 agencies, and that no one takes a salary out of the donations.
“One hundred percent stays here, and there’s no administration costs,” Lucas said. “It’s all done with volunteers.”
For more information, please call the Newton Chamber of Commerce at 601-683-2201 or mail contributions to The United Givers Fund, 128 South Main St., Newton, MS 39345.