In 2016, United Way of Sampson County is ready for another successful year of helping local organizations.
Nancy Carr, executive director, recently announced new plans for the organization that helps agencies throughout the community.
“We had a wonderful 2015 campaign,” Carr said. “We exceeded our goal.”
The aim was $175,000 and United Way exceeded that by raising $187,000. A part of it included a dine-in event, which included the help of area restaurants. The campaign ended Dec. 31 and will fund several agencies this year.
“The community was very supportive,” Carr said. “They’re always very generous and this year even more so. It’s going to allow us to do wonderful things in our community.”
The Board of Directors has finalized the allocations for 12 agencies in 2016. A new agency receiving funding from United Way is Enlighten The World Ministries. Through its community assistance program, the ministry used a mobile unit to distribute food, clothing and personal hygiene products to needy people in Sampson County.
Applications for funding are available in the fall and due in early January. The board reviews the applications, before inviting the nonprofit organizations to make a presentation.
“The board listens to the allocation and Enlighten The World satisfied all of the financial requirements,” Carr said. “We felt they were very worthy of doing wonderful things in the community. That’s why the board decided to fund them as a partner agency.”
In addition to funding for the Boy Scouts of America Tuscarora’s Champion Program which focuses on special needs children, United Way is assisting with its Cub Scout after-school program. Other agencies include the Breast and Cervical Cancer Control Program, Clinton Area Foundation for Education (CAFE), Girl Scouts – North Carolina Coastal Pines, Sampson County 4-H, Sampson County Child Advocacy Center, Sampson County Fireman’s Association, Sampson County Friends of Education, Special Olympics Sampson County, Wheelchair Ramp Program (Department of Aging).
Carr reported that United Way granted Harrells Community Center a $2,500 mini-grant to purchase needed equipment to improve the building, which serves the town in southern Sampson County.
“Harrells Community Center is also a wonderful organization,” Carr said.
To show appreciation to major contributors, a luncheon will be held in April. During the year, United Way seeks supports from community businesses, organizations and individuals.
“I think the greatest challenges are the needs in our community,” Carr said. “The needs here are so great. Fortunately, we have many wonderful agencies, but there’s a lot of (nonprofit) agencies that have not applied that would probably be granted funded if they were to. We want to get the word out to apply for funding.”
United Way also had a change at the helm with its local Board of Directors. Clinton city manager Shawn Purvis will serve as the president and Clinton Schools Superintendent Dr. Stuart Blount will serve as vice president. Dempsey Craig of Sampson Regional Medical Center is the treasurer and Janet Sargent, a community volunteer, is the secretary.
For more information about the organization, obtaining a mini grant, donation opportunities or becoming a partner agency, contact United Way at 910-592-4263 or online at www.unitedwaysampson.org.
“The money raised in our community stays here,” Carr said. “There’s a lot of charitable organizations who do good work, but the money raised goes somewhere else.
“Although we’re a member of United Way worldwide, we are a locally ran group, governed by people here in Sampson County,” Carr continued. “They make the decisions and the funding goes directly to agencies in Sampson County delivering a service. I think that’s one of the things that distinguish us — we’re very local.”
Reach Chase Jordan at 910-249-4617. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.