February 4, 2014

Editorial: United Way short of goal

United Way has helped you, at some point, whether you realize it or not. Now, United Way needs your help.

United Way of the Adirondack Region Inc. has not met its $725,000 goal for this year, and time is running out. The deadline has been extended to Feb. 21.

It’s understandable that this is a hard time to part with money. The holiday bills are rolling in, and the start of each new year brings tax bills and other expenses.

But giving to United Way of the Adirondack Region accomplishes so much in one fell swoop because of the nature of the organization. Money donated to the group is divided among 40 partner agencies, all of which work to improve the well-being of people in the North Country.

The money isn’t going to other states or even other parts of New York. It stays right here in Clinton, Essex and Franklin counties.

“It’s like an insurance policy for our communities, and it helps to ensure that vital programs and services are available in times of need for ourselves, our families, friends and neighbors,” Executive Director John C. Bernardi emphasized. “The impact we make is tangible across the region.”

United Way agencies provided service to nearly 80,000 local residents last year. Programs are available to help people from the day they are born through to the end of their lives.

United Way also coordinates other programs that benefit our area, including the Earned Income Tax Credit service, 2-1-1 information and referral, disaster recovery and volunteer efforts.

The United Way Board of Directors, made up of local volunteers, makes sure the agencies accepted into the organization are going to devote their funding to high-quality programs. Community members oversee the allocation process, monitoring agency services to ensure that your money is being used as efficiently as possible.

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