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United Way sets highest goal

August 27, 1999

Elizabeth EbertsBy RICHARD F. BELISLE / Staff Writer, Waynesboro

photo: RICHARD T. MEAGHER / staff photographer




WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Elizabeth Eberts of Waynesboro will lead this year's Franklin County United Way fund drive, a campaign to raise $735,000 for the countywide charitable clearing house that provides support for 27 agencies.

The goal is the highest ever sought by the United Way chapter, but Eberts believes it will be met if county residents and corporations are just slightly more generous than they were last year.

The 1998 United Way goal was $725,000.

"We exceeded that slightly, but we did exceed it," Eberts said.

The charity also met its goal in 1997, she said. In the two previous years, the amount collected fell short of the goals that had been set, she said.

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Eberts is heading up a group of 11 subcommittees staffed by about 300 volunteers who will help in the fall campaign, which kicks off officially with a luncheon Sept. 24 at the Quality Inn in Chambersburg, Pa. IT will end with a celebration luncheon in February, Eberts said.

The United Way gets its money from individuals who give cash or have payroll deductions go to the charity and from direct corporate contributions.

Less than 10 percent of the money taken in goes toward administrative costs. The agency has two full-time employees and has been operating in Franklin County for 57 years.

How much each of the 27 United Way agencies will receive is determined by an allocations committee, the members of which meet every spring to review agency requests.

Eberts said the committee checks how the United Way appropriation was spent in the previous year and looks at the requesting agency's budget.

"They check for accountability," she said.

Among the 27 area agencies supported by the United Way are both Franklin County chapters of the Red Cross, Children's Aid Society of Franklin County, Cumberland Valley Mental health Center, Franklin/Fulton Association for Retarded Persons, Franklin County Shelter for the Homeless, Legal Services Inc., Lutheran Home Care Services, Salvation Army, U.S.O. and the Waynesboro Area Advanced Life Support Unit.

"I strongly believe in the United Way. The need is always growing even in times when the economy is good like it is now," Eberts said.

She has been a member of the United Way's board of directors for four years. She is a member of the Maryland Symphony Orchestra Guild and is a trustee at Wilson College in Chambersburg, Pa.

Her husband, Richard Eberts, is a local businessman.

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