UNITED WAY REACHES GOAL
DUDLEY: On April 14th, board members of the United Way of South Central MA and guests met in the Daniels Auditorium at Nichols College with member agencies and donors to celebrate the 2021 Campaign and special award recipients.
Kris Marier, the 2021 Campaign Chairman, reported on this past year’s campaign. After thanking all United Way volunteers for working so hard to make the 2021 Campaign as success, Mr. Marier announced “For the first time in over 10 years the annual goal was met at the halfway point! Over $537,000 has been raised locally and through designations from across the nation. Achieving this goal allows the United Way to fully fund our partner agencies and plan for future programs. It is the largest amount ever raised by our United Way and we are grateful to all our donors and corporate partners.”
The event’s guest speaker was from one of the agencies that the United Way partners with that provides education programs for children who live in South Central MA. Marybeth Campbell, Executive Director of Worcester Community Action Council stated that “As the federally designated anti-poverty agency for Central and South-Central Massachusetts, WCAC provides a safety net for residents in Worcester County that provides must needed services such as home heating assistance, childcare through Head Start in Southbridge and Webster, Healthy Families programs, tax preparation and youth job skills training. If this past year has taught us anything, it is that we must strengthen our resolve to end poverty and systemic racism and work to promote healing from the trauma and anguish inflicted on families. We embrace our shared responsibility to work toward a better society as we fulfill our mission to help people move to economic self-sufficiency through programs, partnerships, and advocacy. “
United Way of South Central MA Executive Director Mary O’Coin gave an update on some exciting opportunities that have become available for schools and non-profit organizations in our region with a grant from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education made available for Afterschool and Summer Programs. The United Way will be able to provide over $150,000 beyond what is raised locally to supply funding for an additional ten afterschool enrichment and summer programs. “By increasing the United Way’s presence in the community and by obtaining this special funding, it has allowed us to think outside of the box and bring new ideas of helping the students in our region to rebound from the learning deficits that have occurred during the pandemic.”
Mrs. O’Coin then announced the annual awards and presented two special awards to outstanding donors. She announced the United Way Tocqueville Society Award, which recognizes local philanthropic leaders and volunteer champions in the United States, France and Romania who have devoted time, talent, and funds to create long-lasting changes by tackling our communities most serious issues. Renowned 19th century French political philosopher Alexis de Tocqueville admired three elements in North American society: liberty, equality and the spirit of neighbor helping neighbor. Tocqueville believed that by achieving these elements of democracy, all people would choose to pursue freedom, knowledge, and prosperity.
Since 1984 over $9 billion has been contributed by over 25,000 Tocqueville members worldwide. Membership in the Society is granted to individuals who contribute at least $10,000 annually to United Way. Mrs. O’Coin presented Randall and Donna Becker of Webster as the first members of the Tocqueville Society.
The second special award was a MAKE A DIFFERENCE AWARD and was presented to CORNERSTONE BANK and its employees for an outstanding level of giving of $65,000 this year.
Other awards of recognition were presented to the following companies for either their level of employee participation, or for total money raised through their individual campaigns.
Good Neighbor Award - Gifts and pledges of $10,000 and more
- bankHometown and Employees
- Hyde Tool and Employees
- UMASS Memorial Health – Harrington Employees
- The Kunkel Foundation
Silver Award - Awarded to companies with 85%-99% participation
- Savers Bank and Employees - For 86% employee participation
Gold Award - For 100 % employee participation
- St. Luke’s Healthcare
Diamond Award - For overall employee and corporate gifts and pledges of $30,000+
- Dexter-Russell, Inc., and Employees - $30,000
- Fels Family Foundation - $40,000
- Fundación MAPFRE - $80,000
- INCOM, Inc. and Employees - $35,000
Diamond Award and 2021 Pacesetter Pin
- KARL STORZ Endovision & Endoscopy -America both receive the Diamond award for their locations in Charlton and Auburn along with the 2021 PACESETTER AWARD pin.