With an influx of new dollars and contributions from steadfast supporters, the Franklin County Area United Way has surpassed its goal, bringing in $1,040,723, officials announced this week.
This year’s goal was $1,000,060 in honor of the organization’s 60th anniversary.
“What a great anniversary present,” said Kim Strubberg, executive director.
“By raising more money, we can help more people and I think that’s the most important thing,” Strubberg told The Missourian. “And it’s all thanks to the generosity of this community. We can’t say thank you enough to everyone who donated and helped with the campaign.”
The funds raised will benefit more than 48 area agencies and programs in the county. Last year, over 70,000 people in 35 communities were touched by these services.
The 2013 goal was surpassed by $40,663 — a result Strubberg described as “phenomenal.”
The total is a 7.3 percent increase over last year’s initial attainment of $969,709, and 4 percent over the $1 million eventually raised thanks to some unexpected gifts that came in at the beginning of the year.
The co-chairs of this year’s drive, David Strubberg of Ameren and Stephen Trentmann of The Missourian, said there’s a lot to be thankful for this season.
“The pilot companies did an outstanding job and they really jumped out there and set the pace from the beginning,” said David Strubberg.
Trentmann agreed, adding that business leaders throughout the county deserve a lot of credit for the campaign’s success by allowing company rallies and special events.
“By allowing us to come in their businesses, which is costly because it stops production and workflow, and share our message makes all the difference,” Trentmann said. “We could never be as successful as we are without these company rallies.”
Kim Strubberg also noted the campaign saw “new dollars” coming in from businesses and individuals who did not contribute last year. She said United Way board members personally reached out to companies and residents asking them to consider a donation.
The slightly improved economy may have helped too, the co-chairs said.
“There was definitely an ebb and flow with donations this year,” David Strubberg said. “Some companies were up dramatically, but we did have some that dropped and that may have depended on how their industry was faring.”
Trentmann said some companies had gone through major changes from the previous year and were in a better position financially during this campaign which also helped boost donations.
In celebration of the United Way’s 60th birthday, Trentmann said donors were encouraged to give in increments of $60 and many of the donations that came in reflected that.
“I think people really made that connection, which is great,” he said.
David Strubberg said at rallies, United Way board members and staff also explained what $60 can do in the hands of just one agency, which also made an impression.
Top 10 Donors
Leading the campaign this year is Melton Machine & Control Company in Washington with a donation of $114,010. This gift represents a 35 percent increase over last year.
“Melton did a phenomenal job,” Strubberg said.
The second highest corporate contributor is Ameren Missouri which brought in $110,828, a 5 percent increase.
Coming in third was the Bank of Washington which raised $65,200.
Also in the Top 5 are Mercy Hospital Washington with a gift of $42,405 and Sporlan-Parker Hannifin, Washington, which brought in $40,593.
Rounding out the Top 10 in order are CG Powers Systems, Washington, $30,000; Clemco Industries, Washington, $23,225; Missourian Publishing Co., Washington, $22,997; Bank of Franklin County, $20,950; and NuStar Energy LP, Hermann, $19,010.
The Top 30 corporate donors brought in $711,628, which is 68 percent of the total collected.
With all of the pledges counted and the total finalized, Strubberg said the board can now turn its attention to the most rewarding aspect of its job — allocations.
The allocations committee will meet next Tuesday to begin reviewing all funding applications. The board will approve the funding requests at its January meeting.
Also on the agenda is a victory celebration, scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 10, at Jesuit Hall, for the Top 30 donors, leadership givers who donated $1,000 or more, volunteers, board members and staff.