2010-10-06 / News

United Way Campaign Start Encouraging

Gina Saff, executive director of the United Way of Fulton County, said the 2010 fund drive campaign is starting on an encouraging note.

Donations are “starting pretty well,” she said.

So far, “We’ve seen several increases in donations. We’re surprised by that,” she said.

That’s good news, because in the past few years, revenue from the fund drive has fallen.

United Way of Fulton County collected about $244,000 in 2009. That was down from the 2008 collection, which, in turn, was down from 2007.

“We hope things are getting better,” she said.

The organization does not set a specific goal. The different agencies, organizations, and programs supported by the local United Way have made requests for funding totaling $305,000.

“We want to give them what they need to get them through the year,” she said.

A dinner was held Sept. 16 for the members of the Dennis Hales Leadership Society. The group honors the late Dennis Hales, former Fulton County treasurer. Those who donate $500 or more to United Way are eligible for membership.

Other campaigns run through the rest of the year. The campaign officially concludes Dec. 30.

United Way of Fulton County operates six programs: Imagination Library, which provides books, delivered to the homes of children from birth to age five; Pack to School, which provides school supplies to underprivileged children in the county; FamilyWize Prescription Cards, which provide drug discount cards to county residents who do not have prescription drug insurance coverage; Tax Preparation Clinics; Cancer Care, which provides direct assistance to cancer patients; and Community Care, which provides assistance for families struggling due to a medical condition or major illness.

Other services include:

•Earn While You Learn; material assistance to pregnant women as rewards and incentives for completing education, prenatal, and parenting classes.

•Habitat for Humanity; provides education to future homeowners on documentation, maintenance, and managing and budgeting money.

•Scouting; promotes personal growth, moral development, leadership, and community service among area youth.

•Tutoring; youth volunteer tutors assist with studying.

•Truancy Prevention; provides mediation between parents caregivers and schools to resolve truancy issues.

•Counseling; uses a cognitive behavioral approach to help people learn how to effectively cope.

•Health and Safety Training; provides training in first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, automatic external defibrillator use, swimming, life guarding, and other areas.

•Horseback Therapy; provides recreational and therapeutic horseback riding to individuals with physical, mental or emotional needs.

•House of Ruth; shelter, food, counseling, support for domestic violence victims.

•Recovery Support Services; provides clean, sober, supportive environment free from presence of drugs and alcohol.

•Serenity Haven; residential treatment facility for women recovering from substance abuse.

•Therapy; functional family therapy and intensive home-based treatment for families in crisis to help keep children in their homes in a safe environment.

•Victim Advocacy; provides court accompaniment, information, referral, support, and other services to victims of crime.

•2-1-1; information and referral services by linking callers to community services

•Adult Day Care: assistance to the elderly in a day care environment; provides respite time to caregivers

•Armed Forces Emergency Service; liaison between service personnel and their families during times of family emergency.

•Emergency Assistance; emergency aid through food banks, financial assistance for rent, utilities, prescription drugs, clothing, transportation, temporary lodging disaster services.

•Legal Services; offers free legal service in civil matter to low-income individuals and groups.

•Community Center; logistic support to offset use of the Fayette Opera House by county and regional service providers.

•Youth Center; provides area youth with activities and programs in a safe, supervised environment at The Outback.

•RSVP; recruits and refers senior adult volunteers to local, non-profit organizations in need of volunteer service.

•Summer Recreation; provides youth recreation activities; emphasizes teamwork, fair play, sportsmanship.

•Youth-Adult Mentoring; provides one-on-one mentoring and role modeling between youth and qualified adults.

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