United Way Struggles to hit fundraising goal

By JARED KEEVER jkeever@perutribune.com


The United Way of Miami County is facing headwinds in its ongoing fundraising campaign.

“Presently, the campaign is at 48 percent,” Executive Director Debi Wallick said in a news release this week. “We are currently $54,000 under compared to where we were last year at this time.”

The organization, which has set a $160,000 goal for this year’s campaign, said in the release that the leadership understands that the pandemic has put a strain on everyone, but that also means that there are still plenty of people out there that need help.

“Our focus is ‘Respond. Recover. Reimagine. Rebuild,’” the release said. “It will be a continued challenge for all of us to recover and rebuild as we may need to deal with other waves of the virus this fall and winter.”

“Our community’s needs are significant, and there is no one person and no one agency that can do it alone,” it said. “United Way funds eight local programs and three initiatives providing for our current community needs. Our programs help people of all walks of life, from our children to our elderly community, at the same time collaborating with members of our community to work towards solutions.”

The campaign got started in August with a community event at the McClure’s Orchard & Winery shop on Broadway on the Wabash River.

Wallick told the Tribune on Friday that she is hopeful that the current shortfall is just symptomatic of people being busy and putting off making their pledges.

Volunteers she said are busy right now reaching back out to people who said earlier in the season that they would be making a pledge later.

“I am hoping that’s what it is,” Wallick said.

Whatever shortfall remains toward the end of this month, Wallick said she will push to make it up during the upcoming Giving Tuesday event.

That event, she said, will be held on Nov. 30 at the United Way office at 13 E. Main St. from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and features a match from NIPSCO up to $5,000.

“So if somebody gives $250, it will be matched $250,” she said.

To donate now, visit www.uwmiamip.org.

Anyone with questions about this year’s campaign can contact Wallick at debiw@uwmiamip.org or give her a call at 765-473-4240.