One of the most gratifying parts of having the opportunity to serve as this year’s chairman of the United Way of the CSRA is seeing firsthand the caring nature of our community – to see so many coming together with the common vision of making a difference in the lives of others, which is a vital characteristic that helps define why many of us decided to call this community home.
Much of the yearly success of United Way can be attributed to our dedicated staff, board of directors, volunteers, loaned professionals and partner agencies who deserve sincere gratitude. However, health and human service needs affected by United Way would be unmet if not for the giving nature of area individuals and companies.
Combined efforts of our donors make a significant impact by funding programs that strengthen the individual, either in a specific time of need or as they better themselves for the future. After-school, tutoring, mentoring and outreach programs equip youths with needed education and life skills. Ready-to-work, job skills training, development services and income-based child-care programs ensure those who strive to become self-sufficient have the opportunity to better their future – and the CSRA’s future.
These are a few examples of the programs that help many set a new direction in their lives; support others who find themselves in unexpected situations beyond their control; and help those who simply cannot help themselves. My time with United Way has convinced me that our community is stronger and a better place to live because of outcomes achieved by these programs. This is best described by one of our dedicated board members, Dr. Alice Frye, when she states in our campaign video: “We all benefit when those who live at the margins are healthier, better educated, and equipped to earn a living.”
To see the video and to learn more about your United Way and how you can help, visit our website at www.uwcsra.org. While there, please consider making a contribution to United Way as we strive to meet the needs of our community through our $4.15 million annual campaign. United Way of the CSRA remains committed to being great stewards of your investment as we ensure your contributions are supporting measurable outcomes that truly make a difference.
(The writer is chairman of the United Way of the CSRA Board of Directors.)