United Way nears $800,000 in campaign donations

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The 2020 United Way campaign achievement is nearing the $800,000 mark of the $1,900,000 campaign.

Moreover, over 1,700 people have contributed to the 2020 fundraising drive to date.

“We are still behind last year’s pace,” said campaign chair Vicky Ducharme. “In 2019, we had hit the one-million-dollar mark of the drive by now. We have seven weeks remaining and all of the large employee campaigns, many with matching corporate donations, are still underway plus others soon to kick-off,” she said.

Ducharme admitted to being a little nervous, but said the community for the most part has responded well to our electronic pledge cards, and our direct mail campaign.

Earlier this week, it was announced that the United Way is partnering with the Dante Club to offer frozen meals for pick up on Nov. 20.

Sarnia-Lambton residents can order family size, 9 portion deep dish lasagna for $55 each, or two for $100, or shepherd’s pie for $45 each, or two for $80. Smaller, three portion sized meals are also available.

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“We are so grateful to our primary sponsor Libro Credit Union, and the Lambton Cattlemen Association who donated all the ground beef for our meals. In fact, all most all of the supplies for the meals have been donated keeping our costs very low, and thank you to the Dante Club for cooking the deep dish lasagna and deep dish shepherd’s pie,” Ducharme said.

To order your meals, and for more information, call the United Way office at 519 336-5452, ext. 8, or email rebecca@theunitedway.on.ca.

Ducharme said meals can be reheated at home or placed in the freezer for another night.

All meals will be available to be picked up between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Nov. 20 unless alternate arrangements are made.

Meanwhile, the On The Dot Delivery Service is also running a bottle drive for the United Way.

“Many Happy Returns” bottle drive will have both a pickup service, and a drop off location. Call 519 383-5566 to arrange a safe pick up of your returnable bottles and cans from your garage or porch anytime, or can be dropped off on Saturday, Nov. 14 at the Christos parking lot between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.

“We are so grateful to On The Dot, and all the frozen meal donors for their support of these events that is sure to get us closer to the $1,900,000 needs target,” said Ducharme.

She said the agriculture community as a group is also generously supporting the campaign in addition to the Lambton Cattlemen. Earth Fresh Farms in Grand Bend who generally donated to the Locally Lambton Dinner in past years is supplying all the potatoes required for the shepherd’s pie, and the Lambton Federation of Agriculture who annually sponsored the Locally Lambton Dinner doubled their contribution this year and presented a cash donation on behalf of all their members.

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Ducharme said the United Way has recruited several new donors this year.

“We are seeing first time donors within the employee campaigns, and both online and through the mail,” she said. “We are completing the first round of follow up mailings to those donors who traditionally donate through the mail or online, but have not yet done so this year.”

The United Way of Sarnia-Lambton is a local organization that supports 36 programs and services in Sarnia and Lambton County provided by 18 funded agencies supporting youth, families and seniors.

The United Way campaign will run until the end of the year.

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