BIG TARGET- Organizers with this year’s United Way of Central Alberta campaign reveal this year’s fundraising goal of $1.96 million.

United Way launches campaign

The United Way of Central Alberta has certainly set the bar high in terms of their goal this year.

The organization kicked off its campaign recently with more than 400 people in attendance at the Capri Hotel Trade & Convention Centre. This year’s campaign goal is set at $1.96 million.

So far the United Way has raised almost $140,000.

“We wanted to set a goal that was more than the $1.9 million we raised last year,” said Lars Rogers, co-chair of the campaign. “We really wanted to set our goal for more than we did this year, but after the uncertainty with the global economy and how it’s going to impact Alberta’s economy, we thought we would set a goal that was challenging, yet achievable.”

The money raised last year helped 92,000 Central Albertans.

Sherri Smith, co-chair of the campaign said she’s confident the organization will meet its fundraising goal.

“We know the need is there. If we could raise two to three times our goal we know we could be helping so many more people. There’s just so many people out there to help.”

As many companies have tightened up their purse strings over the last few years, the United Way has worked hard to make sure the donations come in.

“With our early contacts with companies we’ve gotten a really good response from most of them,” said Rogers. “Most of the companies we had on board last year are on board again this year.”

Established in 1965, United Way of Central Alberta is a charitable organization working to improve lives and build community by engaging individuals and mobilizing collective action. United Way supports a wide range of programs and services in Sundre, Rocky Mountain House, Ponoka, Sylvan Lake, Stettler, Lacombe, Bashaw, Red Deer and in the townships in between.

“The United Way is the largest non-government funder of programs in Central Alberta and we fund the agencies and we go in with a very robust process. We have anywhere between 10 and 30 volunteers who go in and visit the agencies, review all the programs and make sure they are being delivered effectively,” said Rogers.

For more information call 403-343-3900 or visit www.caunitedway.ca.

efawcett@reddeerexpress.com

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