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United Way set to kick off campaign

September 13, 1999|By BRYN MICKLE

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - This year's United Way campaign in Berkeley and Morgan counties will begin Tuesday with the annual Day of Caring, United Way Executive Director Dave Ranck said.

Volunteers will fan out across both counties and perform a variety of community service tasks at United Way-sponsored agencies, Ranck said.

"This is a way to draw attention to the campaign and at the same time give back to the agencies that give to the community," he said.

Among the jobs lined up for this year's Day of Caring are a Red Cross blood drive and the construction of a fence and handicap-access ramp at the Aids Network of the Tri-State Area in Martinsburg, Ranck said.

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Workers will also repair the roof at the Berkeley County Humane Society and collect food and supplies for animals, Ranck said.

More than 1,200 volunteers are expected to work on 109 projects in both counties, United Way Campaign Chairwoman Marcia Snow said.

The Day of Caring also serves as the official beginning of the United Way's fund-raising program that will run through the end of the year, Snow said.

"This is when the enthusiasm really starts for the whole campaign," she said.

After raising $578,000 in last year's campaigns, the group has set this year's goal at $550,000, Ranck said.

"That was our goal last year and we're hoping for similar results this year," he said.

United Way organizers hope the campaign reaches its goal by December but won't stop if donations fall short, Snow said.

"If we don't make it, we'll continue until we do," she said.

The money goes to United Way-sponsored agencies that provide much-needed services to Eastern Panhandle residents, Ranck said.

Berkeley County Meals on Wheels last year provided more than 29,000 meals prepared and delivered by 3,600 volunteers, according to the United Way.

The Congregational Cooperative Action Project gave food, fuel and other assistance to 18,000 people last year, according to the United Way.

The Day of Caring activities will begin Tuesday at 8 a.m. with breakfasts in War Memorial Park in Berkeley County and in Berkeley Springs Park in Morgan County.

The events will end at 5 p.m. at War Memorial Park with a meal sponsored by Outback Steakhouse in Martinsburg.

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