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United Way plans to raise $55K for groups

The United Way of Prince Edward County has set a goal of raising $55,000 to contribute to its partner organizations for the 2017-18 campaign year.

The group’s board of directors set the goal at its Monday, Aug. 28, meeting.

“Last year, the United Way raised nearly $47,000 for its 20 partners,” officials said in the release. “That was slightly less than its $50,000 goal, but even so, the board of directors decided to increase this year’s fundraising goal.”

“Be aggressive,” said Rucker Snead, the group’s president, in summing up the decision.

Those wishing to donate can go to the United Way’s website: uwprinceedward.org.

Indeed, Snead noted that the United Way has already raised $5,000 since July 1, so “we’re off to a good start.”

Meanwhile, the group is gearing up for its major fundraiser — its letter campaign. According to the press release, they hope to mail out the letters soliciting funds in October.

“Fundraisers are already planned to help out the United Way’s efforts, including a Thursday, Sept. 21, wine tasting at the Virginia Tasting Cellar,” officials said in the release. “Centra Southside Community Hospital is sponsoring the tasting in Farmville’s riverside wine tasting room.”

A bake sale is also scheduled at the hospital for Monday, Oct. 23.

In addition, the United Way is considering a number of fundraisers of its own, including the possibility of a rubber duck race.

“Each organization that is going to get money is responsible for helping to sell (the ducks),” said Bruce Davis, a member of the all-volunteer board.

The release cited that the United Way has started focusing on education, income and health, but earlier this year Snead assured the representatives of the partners that they will not be forgotten as they continue to provide needed services.

“Meanwhile, the United Way continues to try to work closely with its partners and synchronize fundraising efforts, and do a better job of marketing,” officials said in the release. “The United Way is also encouraging its partners to take advantage of labor and volunteer work of the more than 6,000 local college students brought in town by Longwood University and Hampden-Sydney College.”

The United Way is the world’s largest privately-funded nonprofit, engaging people from all walks of life in nearly 1,800 communities across more than 40 countries and territories. Among its partners are global, national and local businesses, nonprofits, civic and faith organizations, as well as educators, labor, health organizations and governments.

“Locally, the group makes contributions to a wide variety of organizations that have missions to support the residents of Southside Virginia,” officials said in the release. “Among these organizations are the Boy and Girl Scouts, Meals on Wheels, FACES, Virginia Legal Aid Society, Heart of Virginia Free Clinic, and Southside Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.”

The full list of partners can be found on the United Way’s website.