The United Way of Carlisle & Cumberland County surpassed its goal for its 2017 campaign. The organization announced that it had raised $1,452,758 at its campaign celebration Thursday morning.

“We’re extremely pleased to be able to meet this year’s goal and exceed it by a little bit,” said Lucy Zander, United Way executive director.

The organization set a goal of $1.45 million last fall, and Zander said she knew making that goal would be difficult.

“In the fall, there were some natural disasters that we thought might pull resources away from our community to give aid down south,” she said.

Reaching the goal was part hard work in reaching out to individuals and companies in the community and part surprise. December is the busiest month of the campaign, and Zander said she was worried just before Christmas. Then, a few large contributions came in.

The total announced Thursday reflects contributions already turned in or reported as well as estimated or conservative projected final figures on a number of campaigns still underway. About 92 percent of the campaign has been processed or officially reported with the remaining expected to be finalized in the next few months.

The campaign helps to fund 41 programs at 26 partner agencies that provide meals and shelter for families, mentors for children, scholarships for preschoolers, medical care and more, Zander said.

The campaign celebration, held at Dickinson College, honored those who played key roles in the fundraising effort including co-chairs Tom Bream of S&T Bank and Greg Hall of Smith Elliott Kearns & Co.

Bream said the campaign began with more than 100 companies and 86 volunteers participating, and ended with approximately 2,300 donors pledging their support to the United Way. He also said 42 percent of the donations came from professionals, retirees and employees at companies without United Way campaigns.

In addition to announcing the totals from this year’s campaign, Bream and Hall awarded special recognition to several top performing companies including: Tuckey Cos., Allen Distribution and Giant Food Stores with the Campaign Award of Excellence for small, medium, and large company, respectively. Also receiving recognition was Carlisle CARES, Most Improved Award and Allen Distribution’s Colleen Thompson, Outstanding Campaign Coordinator Award.

Division Chairman Awards were presented to UPMC Pinnacle Carlisle, Carlisle Family YMCA, Tuckey Cos., M&T Bank, Dickinson College, Giant Food Stores, Keen Transport, Allen Distribution and Frog, Switch & Manufacturing Co.

The winner of the grand prize Travel United package sponsored by M&T Bank was Jeff Swope from Bosler Library.

Next year’s campaign co-chairs are Jen Burd of M&T Bank and Dave Metz of Morgan Stanley. The 2018 campaign will be United Way’s 100th campaign for the community. The milestone will be celebrated with events throughout the year.

Email Tammie at tgitt@cumberlink.com. Follow her on Twitter @TammieGitt.

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Carlisle Reporter

Carlisle Reporter for The Sentinel.

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