United Way sets ‘needs target’ for 2019 campaign

Photo by United Way Sarnia-Lambton.

The United Way of Sarnia-Lambton is hoping to reach a “Needs Target” in its 2019 campaign.

Executive Director Dave Brown said they’re taking a new approach to this years fundraising campaign by not setting a traditional campaign goal — something that’s been done since 1957.

“After last year, not making our goal for the first time in about 25 years, and we know that this year is going to be a difficult and challenging campaign with a Federal election etc., we thought that we would really promote what it is that we truly need for our funded agencies and if we’re able to meet last years level, that’s great we can use that for our venture grant program or other funding programs,” said Brown.

Brown said a minimum of $1.9 million is needed to appropriately fund the current 36 programs and services they support in Lambton County.

“We’re really trying to focus on setting up new employee campaigns,” he said. “If we can get out and do presentations, we really believe the number one reason why people don’t support the local United Way is because they don’t know exactly how the money is being used and just how efficient we and our funded agencies are.”

This is the first year of a three-year funding term for United Way programs, where each agency is required to report its quarterly results.

Brown said Lambton Elderly Outreach’s newly subsidized Meals on Wheels is up 36 per cent since April 1, and 100 per cent of the rural transportation clients have reported that they’re able to live independently in their own homes because of the service.

A cornhole tournament, in support of the United Way, is being held Saturday at 11 a.m. at Valley Axe.

Proceeds from the Sarnia Sting Black and White game August 28 and the Enbridge Car Show on September 7 will also be directed to the nonprofit organization.

The campaign officially kicks off with the annual Day of Caring on September 10.