United Way

The Franklin County Area United Way will announce its goal next week at a special kickoff breakfast for corporate contributors.

The event will take place Thursday, July 21, in the health and science building lecture hall at East Central College in Union. A continental breakfast will be served from 7 to 7:45 a.m. followed by the program at 7:50 a.m.

“We are very excited to get the campaign rolling,” said Kim Strubberg, executive director.

“We have a very dynamic and hardworking board this year so we expect good things,” she said.

The official start to the drive, the single largest annual fundraising campaign in the county, is Tuesday, Sept. 6. The campaign will run through Oct. 31.

The 2015 campaign brought in $1,170,465 — a new record.

At the kickoff Thursday, special events will be announced and the new campaign video which highlights Empac, one of the United Way’s 53 agencies, will be shown.

Empac provides meaningful employment to people with developmental, mental, and physical challenges in Franklin County. A representative of Empac will speak at the breakfast.

The campaign co-chairs this year are Chris Brown, board president, and Whitney Livengood, vice president. Both will speak at the kickoff.

Representatives of the United Way’s Top 30 corporate contributors, Leadership donors, the five pilot companies spearheading the drive and emerging companies have been invited, said Strubberg, as well as city and county officials.

Emerging companies are those that are either new or expanding their campaigns.

“We hope to have about 100 to 125 guests at the kickoff,” said Strubberg, adding that campaign materials will be passed out.

The 23 United Way board members and representatives of the five pilot companies also will be introduced during the program, as well as the sponsors for the campaign.

The pilot companies will begin their in-house drives next week and wrap up about Aug. 31. Those results are announced early to motivate and inspire other companies as they begin their drives.

Strubberg said the Franklin County Area United Way has been building better communities for more than 60 years.

“We do this by allocating funds to agencies and programs which provide health and human services throughout the Franklin County area,” she said. “We concentrate on programs that care for the elderly, disabled and those with special needs; invest in children so they can become good citizens; strengthen families; and provide emergency assistance to those in need.