United Way of Allen County’s Community Campaign has closed at $4.9 million, up from last year’s $4.8 million. United Way President and CEO Todd Stephenson and Campaign Chair Steve Smith announced the total at a news conference today at Meijer, 6309 Lima Road. Meijer captured United Way’s top campaign award, the Spirit of Giving Award.
“This is the second consecutive year for positive campaign growth,” said Smith. “Despite difficult economic times, the community continues to pull together to help our most vulnerable residents by donating to United Way of Allen County.”
Donations to United Way of Allen County support more than 60 local programs and initiatives that provide services such as food, shelter, health care, child care, counseling, tutoring and services for seniors and those with disabilities. The funds are allocated by volunteers who carefully examine each program and its results. Programs must fall into one of three United Way focus areas: Basic Needs, Success in School and Family Stability.
Community Campaign dollars are raised through workplace campaigns, corporate gifts and individual pledges and donations. Many grants and restricted gifts are not counted in the final total, including a match from the Indiana Association of United Ways for new or increased gifts. This match incentive brought in hundreds of new or increased leadership donors and garnered more than $370,000 in additional money for United Way.
Stephenson and Smith also announced that Meijer earned United Way of Allen County’s top campaign award, the Spirit of Giving Award. During the 2010-11 campaign, Meijer increased its employee participation by a remarkable 189 percent, with more than 60 percent of its staff making a pledge to United Way. Additionally, Meijer’s total gift was up 34 percent from the previous year.
“Meijer is an outstanding campaign partner,” said United Way CEO Todd Stephenson. “The company employees dedicate themselves to making the fundraising effort informative and fun. We can’t thank them enough for their hard work on behalf of local individuals who need crucial services like food and shelter.”
Several other awards were announced during the celebration. The Cornerstone awards are given to those companies that have at least 65 percent employee participation, follow campaign best practices and experience growth in their campaign. The Pillar of Support awards are earned by companies that have at least 50 percent employee participation, Cornerstone Companies: Asher Agency, Inc.; Briljent; Dana Corporation/USW Local 903; Do it Best Corp.; Haines, Isenbarger & Skiba, LLC; Indiana Stamp; Pro Products, LLC; Regal Beloit; Steel Dynamics, Inc. Headquarters; Summit Brands; The Bair CPA Group, Inc.; and UPS.
Pillar of Support Companies: 1st Source Bank; Allen County Public Library; Baden, Gage & Schroeder LLC; BF Goodrich/USW Local 715; Burkhart Advertising; General Dynamics Command Systems; GM Truck Group/UAW 2209; Indiana Michigan Power Company/IBEW 1392; and Meijer, Inc. Stores.
Other Awards: Outstanding Campaign Committee was earned by the Raytheon Company campaign committee, the Most Improved Campaign went to Summit Brands with 111 percent growth over the last two years in their campaign total gift, and the Outstanding Agency Partner award was earned by the American Red Cross of Northeast Indiana/American Red Cross Blood Services.