Community donations equal nonprofit support |

Community donations equal nonprofit support

Joshua Roberts

— Giving a little helps a lot.

Although the totals change from year to year, the philosophy behind the annual Moffat County United Way fundraising campaign never wavers. Since 1978, the organization has served as a clearinghouse for local nonprofit agencies in need of financial support.

On Monday, United Way kicks off its 30th campaign in Moffat County with its loftiest fundraising goal to date: $475,000.

“The point is that just a little money, if a lot of people do it, adds up at the end of the day,” said Corrie Ponikvar, Moffat County United Way director.

“We’re always very grateful to our community members and major employers that support our effort to help everybody in our community have a better life. The results are out there.”

Beginning Monday, United Way will lobby local residents and businesses to donate to one of 50 local non-profit groups. Donations by individuals, or business employees, would begin funneling into United Way in January 2008.

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Agencies receiving money range from Advocates-Crisis Support Services to the Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association to Craig youth baseball, hockey and soccer groups. People donating may designate what group they’d like their money to go to.

It is believed that one in every three area residents benefit in some way from United Way fundraising, Ponikvar said.

United Way does not lobby for one particular group to receive funding over another, she said.

“Our goal is to stay neutral,” Ponikvar said. “We say these are all the agencies that provide our community with services and work. Each one of them adds a lot of value to our community.”

This year’s goal eclipses last year’s all-time high, $460,000. And true to the form of the community donating more each year, last year’s total surpassed the previous year’s total, $450,000.

Since 1990, the community has donated $5.3 million to nonprofits through the United Way.

“Every year, we gain,” said Ponikvar, who cited that residents raised $40,000 in the inaugural year, 1978. “It’s a lot of money for a community to raise.”

While some may consider the $475,000 goal a steep figure to reach, Scott said the formula for achieving it is basic. If 5,000 local adults donated $10 per month, or $120 a year, United Way would find itself with $600,000 to work with.

“Most people, I’ve got to believe, could afford to give $10 a month to a local charity,” Ponikvar said.