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United Way groups stop at Citicorp

August 14, 2007|By ANDREW SCHOTZ

Organizations that get money from United Way of Washington County went Tuesday to Citicorp Credit Services, which has one of the county's early United Way fund drives.

Citicorp Credit Services is a "pace setter," which raises money early to give momentum to the county's fundraising campaign.

The campaign for the entire county will begin Aug. 31, said Leah Gayman, the director of resource development for United Way of Washington County.

Representatives from the 25 agencies funded by United Way of Washington County set up tables at Citicorp Credit Services for much of the day and talked to employees about the work their nonprofit organizations do.

Judy Shoop, a volunteer and former employee at Villa Maria of Washington County, said she thinks many people learned at least a little about her organization on Tuesday.

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Villa Maria of Washington County describes itself as a licensed outpatient mental health clinic for children, adults and families.

Many clients are unemployed or have low-paying jobs, Shoop said.

There also was room to learn at the table set up by the Mason-Dixon Council of the Boy Scouts of America, said Don Shepard, the council's executive director.

To many people, Scouting means camping, Shepard said. Actually, it's better thought of as an advancement program with merit badges; it promotes leadership, fitness, character and community service, he said.

The Alzheimer's Association, Horizon Goodwill Industries, Star Community and other United Way of Washington County agencies displayed pamphlets and, in some cases, gave away candy or notepads.

Citicorp Credit Services raised $290,000 last year, O'Connor said. He said it was the first time in a few years that the company met its goal.

Citicorp's goal this year is $295,000.

The room filled with United Way of Washington County agencies was decorated with a "Fun in the Sun" theme.

O'Connor, a unit manager in charge of his company's fund drive, said employees who attended the agency fair received raffle tickets for prizes.

Two top prizes were a trip to a NASCAR race in Dover, Del., and a trip to New York City.

Gayman said this year's overall fundraising goal for the county is $1.9 million.

Last year, the goal was $1.75 million. United Way received $1.8 million in pledges, according to its 2006 campaign report.

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