United Way gifts go a long way in county

Published 10:30am Friday, August 1, 2014

“E Pluribus Unum,” Latin for “Out of many, one,” is the slogan on the Great Seal of the United States, reflecting the relationship of the states to the union. Here in Lincoln County, “Out of many, one” is exactly what the local United Way fund-raising effort is about, too.

“United Way is designed for widespread giving by a lot of people each giving a little,” explains Bill Sones, board president of the United Way of Lincoln County.

And out of those many donations to one cause, we also see many more local residents benefit.

Each year, the funds raised through the United Way are spread out among 12 local agencies – the Boys and Girls Club, the Boy Scouts, Brookhaven Beautiful, Brookhaven Little Theatre, Brookhaven Recreation Department, Doll’s House, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Girl Scouts, Habitat for Humanity, Lincoln County Relief Fund, Outreach Ministries and Pee Wee Football.

With other support for many programs shrinking, local donations to the United Way are becoming even more important, and fund drive volunteers remind us that 99 cents out of every dollar contributed to the United Way in Lincoln County stay in Lincoln County with the local charities.

Unlike many national non-profits that are top heavy with administrative costs, the local United Way campaign is run by volunteers and Brookhaven-Lincoln County Chamber of Commerce staff members, keeping expenses at a minimum.

As this year’s United Way campaign gets under way, we can each help by digging deep into our pockets. The 2014 goal is $110,000, which is only a little over $3 a year spread out over every one of Lincoln County’s estimated 34,000-plus residents.

Contributions can be dropped by the chamber office or given to one of the United Way volunteers when they stop by your workplace. Sones, United Way of Lincoln County campaign chairman Jason Snider and other local volunteers also are planning visits to area businesses in the coming days in hopes of setting up payroll deduction programs.

Payroll giving is one of the easiest ways an individual can contribute to a charity, since the money is donated up front. No contribution is too small, Sones added – even a dollar a week is welcome. Employers also are being encouraged to match worker contributions, making local support go even further.

It’s been said so often that it almost loses its significance, but it’s true nonetheless – united we stand, divided we fall.

When the local United Way asks for your help, dig into your pockets and share what you can. You’ll be able to see the benefits of your gift right here in Lincoln County.