Each year, the United Way of the CSRA produces a campaign video to educate donors on the importance of giving. The 2016 video was about gaining a “New Perspective.” Perspective can be defined a number of ways, but for the purpose of this column I want to focus on perspective as a particular attitude or outlook one has toward another person or object.
What is your perspective?
• How do you view the CSRA?
• Do you see it as a great place to live and work?
• Do you only see the challenges that lie ahead of you or do you see opportunities that await you?
• Do you see the person standing with a cardboard sign as lazy or hardworking?
• Do you see the person behind the counter as fascinating or disenchanting?
My No. 1 goal is for you to see United Way as worthy of your time and money.
As chairman of the Board of Directors, I have spent a great deal of time looking at my perspective. After much thought, I came to the conclusion that we take pride about a region of growth, prosperity and great opportunity, but overlook those who are hurting and struggling, and experiencing difficult times. We boast about the 6 percent unemployment rate, low homeless percentage or low crime rate, but neglect those without jobs or homes, or victims of crime or abuse. Numbers are important if you are one of the fortunate.
What preconceived notions does our community have about others? Does our community think people asking for money will spend the money on gambling, alcohol or drugs? My wish is that the community might realize the money may be needed to buy formula for babies, food for the hungry, gas to get to work or paying bills. The “New Perspective” will see the good in people.
United Way has a perspective of focusing on the needs of the community. It funds programs that help support the mission and vision of the organization to unite people and mobilize community resources to create lasting changes that transform lives.
United Way helps at-risk kids through funding after-school programs and summer camps, autism support services, a community cupboard and health service programs. It also provides support to other agencies such as the Augusta Training Shop, Columbia County Community Connections, Hope House, Christ Community Health Services and Safe Homes of Augusta.
I am extremely proud and honored to have served as your chairman this past year, and I have been gratified by the CSRA’s ability to give to others. If you already have made a donation, thank you! If not, with only a few weeks left in the campaign, I encourage you to take action now. Your investment in the United Way of the CSRA will have an impact on the lives of many local individuals. Your impact can change another person’s perspective from hopeless to hopeful.
To make a donation, please contact the United Way at (706) 724-5544; give online at www.uwcsra.org; or mail a check to 1765 Broad St., Augusta, GA 30904. Thanks for giving to make a difference in someone’s life.
(The writer is chairman of the board of the United Way of the CSRA.)