United Way campaign underway

Oct. 31—Campaign season isn't just for those running for political office. It's also United Way of Daviess County Campaign season.

"Over the last 5 years UWDC has contributed $1.6 million to our community and nearly $300,000 was for recovery efforts due to the pandemic," said the organization's executive director Zella Taylor.

From Bedtime in a Box for some of the county's youngest learners to offering assistance for area agencies that serve older populations, the United Way has been able to touch the lives of many Daviess County residents but they can't do that without support from the community.

"We are encouraged that so many in our community are recognizing the immense value of our United Way during this year's campaign and throughout the year. It's gratifying to see our community coming together around the United Way's diverse efforts to enhance lives here in so many ways," said campaign chair Steve Sacksteder.

Taylor said this year, 120 Bedtime in a Box Kits were distributed to preschool and pre-K students through grant funding United Way received.

"This included providing for children with the Washington Community Schools and PACE Head Start, serving both Washington and Odon areas," she said, adding the Bedtime kits include books, reading charts, pajamas, hygiene items, stuffed animals, alarm clocks and more. "The purpose of the program is to improve reading and create a healthy bedtime routine with parents. We know from last year's pre-survey results about 79% had a set bedtime and after the program that increased to over 97%. We look forward to this program taking place and watching the improvements it will make in the student's future. This is just an example of one program we help support and fund."

Other projects the United Way of Daviess County has contributed to in the last couple of years include:

—Combating mental illness for our youth.

—Helping with drug addiction counseling programs.

—Providing home kits for those fleeing from domestic violence.

—Learning loss prevention programs provided for school age children.

—Grief counseling offered to nursing home staff who lost many of their residents.

—Hot spots and Chromebooks for schools and agencies for learning and online counseling.

—Funding for meals, food, utility and rent costs.

Taylor said there are several ways to support the United Way including a new option that allows donors to give via text message.

"You can visit our website at unitedwayofdaviesscounty.org; donate via text to give at UWDC2021 to 41444; mail to P.O. Box 224, Washington IN 47501; or contact our office for more information at 812-254-1038," she said.

Gifts can be given annually or quarterly or through an employee payroll deduction.

Area businesses wanting to get involved in the campaign can also contact the United Way to have a representative visit their business to share about United Way.