In my community and many across the country, we are moving into the United Way campaign season. For many Americans, this is a chance to give back to their local community.
I choose to donate to my local United Way for several reasons, but the primary reason is that they vet each and every organization that applies for money. The UW reviews each non-profit’s financial statements as well as who the money will serve. They want to make sure that each penny donated stays right here in Hopkins County and goes to support a worthy cause.
Oftentimes individuals will drop by my office and ask for assistance. Due to UW’s annual campaign brochure, I am able to tell these folks which organizations in town can help them with food, utilities, etc. Again, instead of me trying to determine if these folks are con artists or folks in need, I know that Community Chest, CanHelp, and the Ministerial Alliance, three local UW beneficiaries, have the knowledge base and resources to determine how to help these individuals.
If you have ever wondered where your money goes when you donate to United Way, you are welcome to ask any campaign volunteer or board member. They will be happy to share information about the current campaign.
Of course, our local Hopkins County United Way has a long history which started in 1955 as the United Fund. It kicked off on October 3, 1955, with a goal of raising $29,500. The organizers were so confident they would be successful that they scheduled the victory dinner for 10 days later. They were a little short at the time of the dinner, but by October 31st they had exceeded their goal.
The original list of members of the Board of Directors was a who’s who list of Hopkins County citizens. One of the original members was Bill Bradford, local radio station owner and personality.
The recipients of the 1955 funds were Red Cross, Boy Scouts, Community Chest, Girl Scouts, USO, Salvation Army, Crippled Children, and the Gonzales Foundation.
Even though the name and fundraising goal has changed through the years, the purpose of the campaign is the same. United Way is here to benefit our community.
If you would like to send a donation or ask questions about the campaign, the contact information from the United Way website is:
Hopkins County United Way
PO Box 735
Sulphur Springs, TX 75483-0735
Phone: (903) 243-4066