United Way sets their sights on helping others

THE UNITED WAY OF Sheboygan County is hoping the oom-pahs of the Plymouth High School Junge Kameraden band will give their 2013 fundraising campaign the proper oomph.

Plymouth’s one-of-a-kind German band provided the musical background last week for the United Way’s 2013 campaign kickoff breakfast, held at the sparkling Generations center in Plymouth.

The co-chairs of the campaign, Dave Bolland of Plymouth Foam and Kristin Abell of Lakeshore Technical College, announced an ambitious goal to raise $2.5 million for United Way to distribute to nearly two dozen different non-profit agencies and organizations that are striving to make our community better.

The theme of the campaign is “Our Family is Branching Out” and that statement is especially true.

To meet the many needs of the community, United Way helps ensure that the needed funds are branched out to every corner of the county.

New United Way Executive Director Jon Doll, citing an old legend, told the record audience at the kickoff breakfast that the goal is to fight the ogre upstream who is tossing children into the water, not to try to rescue the children downstream – in other words, attack social problems at their root before they create greater costs further down the road for society as a whole.

Abell noted that some people are reluctant to give to the United Way or other social service agencies, questioning how much of what they give goes to overhead and other expenses and not to addressing needs directly. But, as she properly noted, even nonprofit agencies must have brick-and-mortar and other expenses in order to efficiently and effectively deliver the help that is needed – which they do.

And Bolland commented that the United Way agencies operate under a different model than most private-sector businesses – the goal for the agencies is to ultimately eliminate the need for their services and, in effect, put themselves out of business.

The goal for the 2013 United Way campaign is an ambitious one, $2.5 million. But it accurately reflects the level of need in the community.

Sheboygan County residents have stepped up for the United Way admirably in the past, through good times and not-so-good times alike. This year should be no different.

The economy is improving, slowly, but the needs in our community still remain, some even more than ever.

This is the time to once again show our heart and compassion, remembering those among us who are in need of help and doing our part to meet those needs.

With the same spirit of caring and sharing that county residents have shown in the past, the 2013 campaign should be able to meet – and exceed – its goal.

At issue:
2013 United Way campaign
Bottom line:
Exceed the goal to meet the needs

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