With its 2015 campaign set to kick off on Aug. 2, the United Way of Clark, Champaign and Madison Counties (UWCCMC) officially wrapped up its 2014 campaign last week by releasing its 2015-2016 grant funding allocations.
Last year’s campaign, which helped more than 50 nonprofit agencies within the three-county area, raised a total of $1,478,159, said UWCCMC Executive Director Kerry Pedraza.
“Money raised in each county campaign supports programs in that county and is supplemented by contributions of residents who work out of county and direct their United Way contributions back home,” Pedraza said.
Locally, Than Johnson headed up the Champaign County campaign, which raised 99 percent of its $235,000 goal. Madison County met 100 percent of its goal, while Clark County achieved 93 percent of its goal.
“For the past five years with the exception of 2013, Champaign County has raised between $225,000 and $230,000, so when we set the goal for $235,000, we knew it would be a stretch goal,” Pedraza said. “We are very pleased that we raised over what had been raised in years past even though we officially did not make goal.
“I believe that the amount raised by the Champaign County community speaks volumes as to the commitment and caring nature of so many generous individuals. It is truly a community of neighbors helping neighbors,” she added.
Nineteen local programs received funds
Of the $232,071 raised during the 2014 Champaign County campaign, $184,141 was allocated to support 19 programs operated by 17 organizations within the county, while approximately $13,000 went to help fund the United Way’s 2-1-1 program, which provides 24/7 information and referral services for the county. The remaining funds, approximately $35,000, were used for administrative costs (salary, rent, etc.), Pedraza said.
New to the list of programs being funded in Champaign County by UWCCMC for 2015-2016, Pedraza said, are LifeCare Alliance’s Meals on Wheels, which helps feed the elderly, and the Community Action Organization of Delaware, Madison and Union Counties’ Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, which helps families that qualify to claim unearned income tax credits to support themselves.
Despite the county reaching 99 percent of its campaign goal for 2014, the amount of funds available for allocation this year was $10,285 lower than last year’s total due in large part to pledge loss from previous campaigns.
“We always budget 7 percent pledge loss, and if a county has more than a 7 percent pledge loss, an adjustment is made in the amount available to ensure that we have the funding to allow for those allocations,” Pedraza said. “For the past two years, Champaign County sustained a 13.3 percent pledge loss and an 8.3 percent pledge loss, so this additional pledge loss was factored into our amount available to offset that loss.”
As a result, eight programs saw a drop in funding from a year ago with the three largest hits affecting the Red Cross’ Disaster Relief Services (down $5,137), the Urbana-Champaign County Senior Center’s Chore Program (down $2,780) and Community Med Assist’s Medication Assistance Program (down $2,217).
Lynne Gump, executive director of the American Red Cross Northern Miami Valley Ohio chapter serving Champaign, Clark, Darke, Logan, Miami and Shelby counties, said despite the loss in funding support from the United Way, the Red Cross will continue to provide disaster relief services one way or another.
“We will not stop delivering our mission, so to that end we will have to find other supporters to make up this shortfall so that we can continue to respond to the needs of Champaign County,” she said.
Despite receiving less than a year ago, Gump thanked the United Way for its funding support this year in the amount of $4,618.
“United Way is one of our key donors and has been for a very long time,” she said. “We appreciate their continued support of our mission.”
The Champaign County organizations that received allocations for 2015-2016 for their respective programs are Boy Scouts ($2,945 for Prepared for Life), Champaign County Cancer Association ($18,500 for patient services), Caring Kitchen ($18,000 for emergency shelter; $10,800 for soup kitchen), Catholic Charities ($17,000 for Second Harvest Food Bank), Community Action ($5,000 for VITA), Consolidated Care ($10,350 for New Directions), Community Mercy Hospice ($6,247 for Hospice Program), Community Med Assist ($20,000 for medication assistance), Girl Scouts ($1,505 for Leadership Experience), Green Hills Community ($2,500 for Adult Day Services), Life Care Alliance ($2,000 for Meals on Wheels), Urbana-Champaign County Senior Center ($10,000 for Chore Program), Project Woman ($4,644 for domestic violence shelter), Champaign County Red Cross ($4,618 for disaster services), Wellspring ($13,230 for Counseling Program), Champaign County YMCA ($6,500 for Invest in Youth; $7,000 for Kindergarten Readiness Camp) and Volunteer for Adult Life Enrichment ($10,020 for Guardianship Program).
Joshua Keeran may be reached at 937-652-1331 (ext. 1774) or on Twitter @UDCKeeran.