The $242,220.33 raised so far through the Callaway County United Way's 2011 fall campaign will be used to feed hungry families at the SERVE Food Pantry, provide educational opportunities at the Fulton Head Start and provide counseling and resources for abused women and children at the Coalition Against Rape and Domestic Violence and a host of other valuable services in 2012.
A primary source of funding for some of the 14 agencies it supports - the list also includes the Boy Scouts of America-Great Rivers Council, the Callaway County Senior Center, Girl Scouts of the Missouri Heartland and Mid-Missouri Legal Services - leaders with the United Way are concerned an unusually slow fundraising year may prove to be devastating to the community.
Although the second of the United Way's main fundraisers, the Celebrity Waiter Banquet still is coming up on April 14, executive director Kathy Richey Liddle said the organization is projected to be approximately $10,000 short of its $260,000 goal.
"That will affect the agencies drastically. When we had our agency hearings last May, we heard the requests and allocated the money for 2012, so we allocate the funds before we get them," Richey Liddle said. "(If we're short) we'll have to cut agencies' funding that have already seen cuts.
"Most of all, it could be devastating to the residents in our community that use those services."