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Our Opinion: Maintain momentum of United Way campaign

“Thank you for making dreams come true.”

As the United Way of Central Missouri’s fundraising campaign continues, that’s the message President Ann Bax wants to convey to contributors.

The campaign has not been without challenges, including a federal government shutdown that has fueled economic uncertainty.

But Bax sees many reasons to remain optimistic that the campaign will attain its $1.7 million goal.

“Our staff has participated in so many launches and rallies at area businesses, we’ve barely been able to keep up (with tallying contributions),” she said. But keep up they have, reporting more than $1.2 million collected thus far as the campaign approaches a Nov. 7 Victory Celebration.

“This community has been so incredible,” Bax said. “We had businesses finish campaigns and we’ve also had lots of new campaigns this year.

“It’s exciting not only to have new companies on board,” she added, “but it also lets them know about what we do and the services offered by our partner agencies.”

Those 25 partner agencies and programs provide health and human services in all or part of five Central Missouri counties.

The partners: assist victims of natural disasters and domestic violence; serve people with mental and developmental disabilities; feed and shelter the hungry and homeless; and provide guidance and garments for job-seekers.

“Last year,” Bax said, “the campaign exceeded its goal and our partners were able to help 88,000 people in Mid-Missouri.”

She pointed out that for many of the people served, their dreams are very basic and include such things as paying utility bills or feeding their families.

“We still need everyone’s help,” Bax said. “United, we will make the goal.”

Campaign Pacesetters provided a solid start and employee groups have sustained the momentum. A strong finish will ensure that, united, we can celebrate a victory for our community.

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