FAIRMONT – As the United Way 2019 Campaign gets underway, those in charge are keeping an eye on last year’s donors.
Hoping to see donors to last year’s campaign donate once again, the United Way of Marion County hosted a dinner Thursday in thanks to the individuals who gave at least $500 in 2017.
“This is everybody that gives $500 or more each year, and it’s just a ‘Thank you’ reception for those who do,” Tina Shaw, campaign chair for this year’s United Way Campaign, said. “They’re truly the leaders setting the pace for the campaign.”
The United Way hosted the dinner in the Woman’s Club in Fairmont, inviting those donors to an evening of food and mingling, with food provided by the members of the club.
“This is something new for them,” Shaw said. “These are our largest donors, so you have to find a way to say ‘Thank you.’ You have to find a way to tell them how much they are appreciated.”
Shaw said there were 68 givers who donated more than $500 to the campaign, who are imperative to the success of the campaign. With this year's campaign, Shaw hopes to increase that number.
“They bring in about $87,000,” Shaw said. “That’s 20 percent of the campaign right there, so our goal is to increase that to 100 leadership givers for this year’s campaign.”
During the dinner, Brett White, executive director of United Way, commented on the need for these donors, as they fund a sizeable portion of the campaign each year.
“These 68 donors make up 21 percent of our overall campaign,” White said. “It’s also our way of keeping them informed about United Way and how things are going, and know how things are going along.”
Through this work of thanks, Shaw hopes to encourage others to find some money to give this year.
“With the campaign being kicked off, something like this will hopefully spur others to give a bit more,” Shaw said. “Even if it’s a dollar more than they’ve given before, that makes such a huge difference in our county.”
Along with the words of thanks, White and Shaw spoke of the upcoming fundraising events for the campaign, including October’s Dancing With the Stars.
“We’re in full gear right now,” Shaw said. “Dancing With the Stars is going to be amazing.”