United Fund goal drops by $20,000 this year

The United Fund of the Corry Area board of directors, representatives from the agencies it serves, and other volunteers kicked off the 2009 fundraising campaign Thursday at the American Red Cross, Corry chapter. Looking over figures for this year’s campaign are, from left, Jane Roche, board president; the Rev. Thomas Brown, a member of the board of directors for Corry Counseling Services; Karen Croyle, director of Corry Counseling Services; and Steve Redrup, chief executive office of Corry YMCA.

There were no floral centerpieces on the tables for door prizes like there has been in years past. The menu, instead of the usual picnic dinner, was not fancy, but consisted of good-tasting food that everyone seemed to enjoy.

There were no long, drawn-out speeches. Nope, the message at year’s kickoff luncheon for the 2009 campaign for the United Fund of the Corry Area was short and sweet: We can do it.

“This is going to be a no-frills campaign,” said Jane Roche, president of the United Fund’s board of directors. “We’re trying to divert all the money we can back to your agencies and the community.”

Even in tough economic times that have not spared Corry, the United Fund volunteers are determined that the community — as it has in the past — will pull together and support the annual campaign drive.

This year’s goal of $145,000 is down from the 2008 campaign goal by $20,000.

Since last year’s campaign, however, Erie Plastics on East Columbus Avenue was sold and eventually closed, putting about 300 people out of a job. And where there are no jobs, there are no donations.

The goal for 2008 was $165,000. The goal last year for industry alone was $104,500. This year’s goal for donations from industries has dropped to $91,000.

The United Fund serves 16 nonprofit agencies in the Corry area.

Steve Bishop, executive director of the Corry Higher Education Council, serves as this year’s campaign chairman.

Bishop could not attend the kick-off luncheon, but he sent a message via e-mail.

See the Journal's Friday, August 28th edition for full story.

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