The fundraising group announced in December that donations and pledges have exceeded the year’s goal of $110,000. So far, $143,000 has been pledged, 23 percent over the goal, and there could be more pledges and donations to come.
That speaks well of the local United Way office and of those who responded.
Fundraising campaign chairwoman Cindy Pennington thanked all the people and businesses who contributed, and the board bid a fond farewell to the organization’s only employee, executive director Darlene Mitchell, who retired in December, and welcomed Misty McGehee who has accepted the job.
The organizations receiving funds from United Way will need more local support to carry out their missions during the coming year. Here’s a summary of what they do in our community.
The local Easter Seals chapter focuses its efforts on a summer speech therapy program for children.
The Red Cross helps people prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies, provide service to military families and administers Project SHARE energy assistance funds.
Big Brothers Big Sisters provides professionally supported mentors to help reinforce positive attributes for children facing adversity.
Boy Scouts benefit from United Way with its training programs, outdoor activities, community service opportunities, character education, and by teaching the importance of having fun with a purpose.
Boys and Girls Clubs work with young people from disadvantaged circumstances with a commitment to quality programs and services that enhance lives and shape futures.
Cheaha Family Support Council serves people with disabilities, helping them meet the challenges of everyday life. That can happen through referrals, information, home modifications, or other needs based on funds available to help.
The Children’s Emergency Fund of DHR provides emergency medicine and clothing to low income children and their families.
The Community Action Agency helps low income families achieve economic security through assistance with needs including food, transportation and weatherization with a goal of improving clients’ lives.
East Central Alabama Cerebral Palsy serves children and adults with developmental disabilities with therapeutic and educational assistance.
FIRST Family Services works toward enhancing skills that promote self-sufficiency with information, referrals, children’s books, parenting workshops medication assistance and more.
Girls Scouts provide a range of learning adventures for girls and young women to help grow skills, enhance self-confidence and build character.
The Lincoln Food Pantry is a faith-based organization that provides food for residents in need.
Rainbow Mountain Moms is a nondenominational Christian-based program that assists single mothers and their children with information, support, assistance and recreation.
Red Door Kitchen’s Meals on Wheels program delivers hot meals daily to homebound individuals.
Rural Relief works through the schools to help low income families with school age children. Assistance can provide medicine, food, clothing and other help.
Talladega Babe Ruth promotes fair play, teamwork and sportsmanship through youth baseball.
The Talladega County Child Advocacy Center-Palmer Place meets the needs of abused and neglected children and provides a non-threatening, safe and friendly atmosphere to interview and council child abuse victims.
Talladega County Extension’s 4-H Council reaches youth through in-school program, special interest program and traditional club programs for kids 9-19. The goals are to develop productive citizens and leadership skills.
The ARC of North Talladega County strives to improve the quality of life for persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities by providing educational materials and support services.
Other United Way programs serve other parts of this newspaper’s circulation area. United Way of Sylacauga serves the southern part of the county, and St. Clair County is part of the five-county United Way of Central Alabama.
The goals and services provided by these organizations are commendable, and the United Way fundraising drives offer a convenient way to spread the generosity of a community across a broad spectrum of needs. It’s encouraging to see the level of giving exceed the goal.