The United Way of Lee, Hendry, and Glades has concluded the 2012-2013 Campaign and exceeded the campaign goal of $8,060,193. The campaign concluded on Feb. 28 and with a vigorous last push effort by volunteers and United Way board members, the goal was surpassed.
Robert Wilson, 2012-2013 United Way Campaign Chair, and Vice President and General Manger of Enterprise Holdings Southwest Florida (the parent company on Enterprise, Alamo and National Car Rental) announced that local residents and companies contributed $8,140,974 to the campaign.
At the goal announcement Wilson said, "I am very excited to announce that the United Way of Lee, Hendry, and Glades has exceeded the campaign goal for the 20th consecutive year! Our wonderful community has done it again!
"Thank you to every individual and company who gave to the United Way Campaign. Despite the slowly recovering economy, residents of our community realized that many friends and neighbors are still struggling.
"Because of your generosity, hungry families will receive food, abused children and adults can find shelter, Alzheimer's caregivers can have respite, and babies and toddlers can get a healthy start in life. Low to middle income persons can receive free help filing their income taxes, and thousands of meals will be delivered to the home-bound. You gave so others could have to a better life. I am very proud to live in Southwest Florida where people truly care about each other.
"Making our campaign goal means that the 70 United Way Partner Agencies will receive their full allocation of funds. The needs in our community have remained high this year. Many agencies have lost funding from government and private sources. United Way Partner Agencies' 140 programs will be fully funded and hundreds of thousands of our fellow citizens will receive the help they need," he continued. "United Way keeps its administrative and fundraising cost very low, returning 91 percent of what is raised to the agencies and programs."
"Thank you to all of the individuals, companies, communities and partner agencies for your generous contributions. You proved once again what a caring community this is," Wilson said at the goal announcement.
In addition to all of the very generous individuals and agencies that contributed to the 2012-2013 United Way Campaign, the top local contributing companies and organizations, and the top communities are as follows:
Top United Way Company and Community Contributors
1. Publix Super Markets $1,403,383
2. Bonita Bay Community $802,278
3. Bonita Bay Group $366,999
4. Chico's $350,000
5. Sanibel-Captiva Community $319.517
6. Mediterra Community $280,394
7. Brooks Community $228,235
8. Fiddlesticks Community $223,150
9. Lee County School District $211,365
10. LCEC $186,000
11. Pelican Landing Community $183,534
12. FineMark National Bank & Trust $177,117
13. WCI Communities $150,000
14. Enterprise Holdings $138,865
15. BB&TOswald Trippe & Company $126,218
16. Lee Memorial Health System $114,115
Meg Geltner, General Manager of The Salvation Army of Lee, Glades and Hendry Counties said, "We are thrilled to hear that the United Way has raised $8.1 million. It is wonderful that our community has rallied again to make the United Way goal and to help those in need. On behalf of everyone who receives Salvation Army services, our board and our staff, we thank the United Way for its leadership and support."
Nancy Green-Irwin, Executive Director of Senior Friendship Centers said about the United Way campaign, "It is comforting to know that our community always steps up to help those in need. It is essential especially for seniors that this continues. Some of the funding we receive from the United Way pays for a staff member at our Volunteer Physician Clinic that services low income elders with no insurance. This extremely efficient clinic saw an increase in patients from 2011 to 2012 of 146 percent. The preventative screenings we provide helps reduce the number elders ending up in ER's, hospitals and the most costly of all for taxpayers, nursing homes.
"Making this campaign goal shows how much people in our community care about one another. That is why our community is such a special place," said Cliff Smith, President of United Way of Lee, Hendry, and Glades.
All money raised in the United Way campaign stays in the local community to help support the local human service network. United Way partner agencies and initiatives like Alvin A. Dubin Alzheimer's Resource Center, Literacy Council of Gulf Coast, Harry Chapin Food Bank, LARC and United Way 211 serve a diverse range of needs in our community such as nurturing children and youth, strengthening families, meeting critical needs such as helping the elderly and disabled live independently, and empowering communities by bringing health and human services to neighborhoods.
In addition to raising funds for human service organizations in our community, the United Way promotes partnerships and collaborations among agencies and initiatives, helping them to work together focusing on issues and solutions that continue to improve lives.
The United Way of Lee, Hendry, and Glades has been "the way the community cares" since it was established in 1957. For more information please call United Way of Lee, Hendry, and Glades at (239) 433-2000 or visit www.unitedwaylee.org.