United Way hopes for big donations in small window Friday | SteamboatToday.com

United Way hopes for big donations in small window Friday

— Routt County United Way campaign director Catherine Carson said a little can go a long way. The organization is planning on collecting a lot Friday, however, and it’s anticipating that money can stretch even further.

The United Way will raise money Friday for its $20K Day for United Way drive, a donation effort in which the nonprofit’s staff and board of directors have pledged to match monies collected Friday up to $10,000.

"There are so many wonderful groups we support," Carson said. "We're champions of human services who help the community. All the funds stay in Routt County. This is a great way to support the community and these wonderful organizations."

The collection effort will take place at City Market from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday. Easy 94.1 will host a live radio remote, and Starbucks will contribute coffee.

Carson said no donation is too small.

"A donation of $50 pays for support group services for five women for one session with Advocates. A donation of $100 pays for lunch for 17 senior citizens or Meals on Wheels for 14. Every individual donation is very powerful. It's effective, and it helps a lot of people."

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Routt County United Way Executive Director Kelly Stanford said the one-day pledge to match funds up to $10,000 has proven successful in the past, and she hopes for a big turnout of donors during Friday’s three-hour fundraising window.

There are 20 volunteer United Way board members and staff members who will help cover the matching funds.

"It's a big commitment, but we feel it's important for those of us on the board to walk the walk and donate in the same way we hope the community will support us," she said. "It is a large amount of money in a short period of time, but we're confident our community is generous and that they'll turn out and help us."

She said United Way donated more than $350,000 to health and human service programs in Routt County through a grant process last year, and that while donating has not yet returned to levels seen before the recession, it has bounced back.

"We're thankful for all the help the community has given us in the past, and we hope people can come out and help us beat that $20,000 goal and raise as much as we can," she said.

For those who can’t make it to City Market, donations also will be accepted, and matched, all day at http://www.routtcountyunitedway.org.

Routt County United Way has a fundraising goal of $525,000 for 2012-13.

To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253 or email jreichenberger@SteamboatToday.com