FAQ

WHY IS UNITED WAY SO IMPORTANT TO ASHLAND COUNTY?

United Way has a unique and critical role in Ashland County. To put it simply, United Way is not about one cause or issue. It is about empowering a community to work together to provide local solutions to local social challenges. Join us in a journey…a journey that envisions Ashland County as a place where The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched …They must be touched with your Hearts! a place that especially fosters hope and opportunity for everyone. Every day United Way is recruiting people and organizations from all across Ashland County who bring the passion, expertise and resources to get things done.

LIVE UNITED™

What does LIVE UNITED™ really mean?  The LIVE UNITED™ theme is a National Initiative used by over 1,300 United  Ways. It  is a simple,  but  impactful  message that encourages individuals to understand how working together we can change and improve lives in Ashland County. LIVE UNITED™ is a goal. It’s a credo, it’s a mission, it’s a constant reminder that when we reach out a hand to one we influence the condition of all. Through caring effort of giving, advocating and volunteering for your community you can make a difference. Because of caring donors and wonderful volunteers supporting United Way, Ashland County is better …way better! LIVE UNITED of  Ashland County.

WE ACCEPT DONOR DESIGNATIONS FOR

  • United Way Partner Agencies
  • Mohican Area Community Fund
  • Ashland County Council on Aging
  • Other United Way organizations and their partner agencies
  • Other 501((}3 Health and Human Service Organizations inside & outside Ashland County, Ohio

I would like to give but can my pledge go to a specific Partner Agency or Agencies?

A major advantage of United Way is that it offers people an opportunity to give once and contribute to a wide variety of services, each important to a healthy community. The concept of “giving once for all has continued since 1957. A donor that might have special interest in one or more United Way funded agencies, because of a personal experience, can designate (a minimum $25) their gift to those specific agencies. To designate your gift, complete the designation area of the pledge form. Any designated amount will be provided to that agency in the name of the contributor.  Paid designations to another United Way and/or their Partner Agencies are  processed  and mailed by end of  1st  Quart er following the campaign.   Designations  made thru payroll deduction are paid the following spring after collection. Any questions please contact Missy at the United Way office at 419-281-5551 or email: missy@uwashlandoh.org.

I do not give to United Way because I do not want any of my money going to “Agency X”.

Because United Way annually funds programs for 13 local partner  agencies, there might be one that you do not want to support. Please consider, however, that a decision  to  withhold  a contribution because  of  one  agency  penalizes  more than 12 others that  are providing vital services.

What about employees who live outside the Ashland areaJ but work in Ashland?

It is very important to know that these employees can designate their pledge to their Home United Way” which includes any of their Partner Agencies. The donor should indicate their request on the designated area on the pledge form. Paid designations to other United Ways with 501{c)3 non-profit  status  are processed  and mailed  by end of  1st  Quarter  following the campaign. Designations made thru payroll deduction are paid the following spring after collect ion . Any questions please contact Missy at the United Way office at 4192815551 or email: missy@uwashlandoh.org

Please explain the “Partnership of Caring” between the United Way and the Mohican Area Community Fund. 

For close to  20 years United Way did not actively campaign in the southern part of Ashland County in respect of the work of the Mohican Area Community Fund (MACF) which ran a local campaign to fund local community services. With both organizations sharing the mission of improving lives, a new “Partnership of Carin g1 was established in 2008 to work  together to fund agencies we are both presently supporting. On June 24, 2008 the  MACF1 s Board of Directors voted unanimously to work with the United Way of Ashland County for the 2009 Campaign. After nine years of a very successful partnership, both organizations  are very optimistic  for  having another  successful  campaign together  in 2017.

The United Way of Ashland County will solicit pledges and collect funds from donors in the MACF area. The United Way will provide letters and pledge forms which are structured for both organizations. The United Way will return all MACF designated paid pledges directly to the Mohican Area Community Fund. Then, the MACF will redistribute funds to the MACF area as approved by the MACF Budget and Admissions Committee. The MACF 2018 goal is $90,000.

MACF continues to operate as it has for over 20 years. Their Budget and Admissions Committee will continue to review and approve requests for funding from the Mohican Area.  The MACF Board of Directors will continue to perform its current  responsibilities including distributing funds to the Mohican Area. For further MACF information contact Brian Hartzell at Hartzell56@hotmail.com

Does United Way  fund two  Domestic Violence Shelters?

No. Starting in 2011 United Way funds only one Domestic Violence Shelter which is the Rape Crisis/Safe Haven Shelter in Ashland County. The Richland County Domestic Violence Shelter (DVS) served only one person from Ashland County in 2010 and decided not to request funding for 2011. United Way funded the DVS in Richland County for over 20 years, but when the new Safe Haven Shelter began in Ashland 2006 the numbers of clients using the Richland County facility decreased dramatically.

Does Council on Aging receive United Way funding?

No. With the passage of their levy, in 2011, Council on Aging has not requested United Way funding since 2012. Because of the excellent partnership of caring between Council on Aging and United Way they will be considered a non-funded partner agency. This is the eighth year for this affiliation. Donors can make a designation to council on Aging.

Is Catholic Charities funding used for legal issues with the Catholic Church?

Catholic Charities funds have never been, nor will ever be used for legal fees or settlements for Clergy sexual abuse. All donations will be used for the donor’s intended purposes. All allocated funding from United Way to Catholic Charities Community Services stays in Ashland County for Early Connections serving pregnant, post-partum women and families with children ages birth to five years old and help connect them with social, health and supportive services.

Who runs the United Way of  Ashland County?

Local and dedicated volunteers oversee every aspect of the organization. They plan annual fundraising and planned giving efforts, organize the campaign, collect contributions and recommend how dollars should be distributed. Top financial leaders in our community monitor United Way’s operation and require that it run in accordance with fiscally sound and accepted practices. Additionally, the organization is operated by a dedicated staff of four full-time trained professionals. United Way’s accountability ensures that funds are prudently managed. An annual financial audit is conducted by an outside CPA firm on all receipts and expenditures. To obtain a copy of the most recent Annual Financial Report for United Way of Ashland County, please contact the  United Way office 419-281-5551.

Who makes the decisions on how the United Way funding is distributed?

The Community Investment Committee, formerly called the Allocation Committee, is made up of 13 local volunteers. This group is responsible for evaluating the needs of our 13 funded-partner agencies and making a recommendation to the United Way Board of Trustees as to the most pressing needs of our community. The United Way Board has the final decision in determining the level of need and the goal for the 2018 “FACES OF CHANGE” Campaign. The 2018 Goal is$ 975,000

What requirements must United Way Partner Agencies meet?

To be eligible for United Way funding, agencies must:

    1. Be registered with the State of Ohio as a S0l(c) 3 non-profit health and human services age ncy.
    2. Document effective delivery of high-priority programs and services in a reliable, cost-effective manner.
    3. Demonstrate sound financial and administrative management practices through auditors’ reports and other valid documentation.
    4. Be in compliance with all applicable laws.
    5. Be governed by a board of directors and publish an annual report.
    6. Make a formal application to United Way for Partnership.
    7. Demonstrate impact through measurable outcomes – in other words, show that they get results.

Why should I  give if I haven’t been helped?

Many people give because a growing number of our most vulnerable residents – abused  women  and children, our elderly, homeless families, those with handicaps and mentally ill – cannot help themselves. There is a great need in our community for the services offered by the United Way Partner Agencies. In June of 2017, agencies made their request for funding the unmet needs of Ashland County for 2018.  You never  know  when  a family  member, neighbor, friend  or even yourself may need, or have used the  services  provided by a United Way partner  agency.

If someone  can’t afford  to  give much,  will a small donation do any good?

Every gift gives hope and improves lives. Even a modest gift per pay period can help provide solutions to the most pressing health and human service needs in our community. By giving through payroll deduction, you can spread your gift over the coming year, making it more manageable for your budget than a one-time gift. It’s not the size of the gift- it is all of us giving together that make United Way a unique and valuable concept. Every dollar matters!

Why is the United Way the best choice for my gift?

United Way brings Ashland County together to provide what matters most- results that improve people’s lives. We’re focused on critical issues like helping children succeed, assisting families and individuals to achieve self-sufficiency and ensuring a safety net of essential service to help meet basic needs like food, shelter, and clothing. One pledge to United Way combined with those of thousands of other people to fund many critical human service, health, and community development programs that make a difference throughout our  community.

How much money actually  goes to  the  Partner Agencies?

Approximately eighty cents of every dollar collected is invested in effective programs, services, and initiatives that demonstrate meaningful, measurable results.  The balance (approximately 21% based on five year average) is operating expenses for campaign, salaries, rent, utilities, office supplies, insurance, legal/professional services and United Way membership dues.

Our employees and their families are struggling. How can we ask them to give?

Time and again, some of the most generous donors are those who themselves needed a helping hand from our community. Everyone should be given an opportunity to express caring through charitable giving, to enjoy the emotional reward that comes from knowing that he or she has helped our community become stronger and safer. Only the donor can determine whether he or she can afford to give at this time. Thanks to payroll deduction, even a small amount each pay period can add up over the year, and give the employee a real feeling of connection to our community.

Why should I support services I may never use?

Any of us may need services such as child care, protective care for children and adults exposed to abuse and neglect, physical and mental health care, and care for older adults, or emergency disaster aid. The life you change by supporting a United Way funded program could be that of a friend, co-worker, family member or even yourself! You never know when United Way will touch your life!

If the United  Way is a Volunteer Organization,  why does it have  a  paid staff?

Throughout the year, local United Way staff members provide support for volunteers, promote continuity in working towards  long-term  community  solutions, and handle  administrative functions as well as referrals for service and volunteer opportunities. There are one full-time, and three part-time paid employees. The annual campaign has become a year-round process.

Although the emphasis of the campaign is concentrated in the months of August through December, United Way actively seeks funding from foundations, company affiliations and through local fund raising activities like “Ring in Spring”, “Fun, Fabulous Fridays”, Holiday Happenings and other special fundraising events.  United Way is blessed with over 250 volunteers that give of their time as board members, campaign team, special events and office support.

My spouse  gives.  Why should  I give, too?

Giving is an individual matter. If you work, you have the opportunity to give and help others in need. You’re asked to give based on only your salary, so we hope that both individuals will contribute at their own place of employment. A husband and wife can complete separate pledge forms and can combine their gifts for reporting purposes to be recognized at the appropriate leader giver levels. The combined gifts must be at least $250 for their names to appear in the Annual Report.

Why   didn’t someone  I know  get  help  from  a United  Way Agency?

Our agencies never deliberately turn someone down who needs help if they qualify for services. Get the facts, names, phone numbers and dates and we will follow-up and get you or that person an answer. However, sometimes we find the person did not qualify for services from the guidelines for assistance from that agency.

Why  do  I  get   donation  requests  from  the  American  Cancer Society?   I thought  they were  a  part of United Way?

There are two  cancer organizations fundraising in Ashland County.  Our United Way funds the Ashland County Cancer Association, a local agency . This organization helps people of Ashland County with transportation, supplies, and medication costs. Generally speaking, the American Cancer Society uses donations, and the Relay for  Life event for Cancer research and donations do not stay directly in Ashland County.

Is it true that United Way of  Ashland  County funds abortions?

The answer is absolutely NOT! The United Way partner agency offering services to prevent teen pregnancy and to teach parenting skills, Parenting Plus, does not have any abortion-related programs.

How does someone get help from the United Way?

United Way does not provide direct services to those in need.  The annual campaign dollars are allocated to the 13 funded partner agencies to help individuals and families in need of financial assistance. The contact information for the Partner Agencies appears in this booklet  on pages 13 – 15 and on the United Way.

How can  I volunteer my time to help United Way?

United Way counts on the contributions of time by many volunteers in Ashland County to improve lives. Numerous volunteer opportunities are available throughout the year. Please contact the  United Way office to learn how to make an impact in Ashland County or go to the website at www .uwashla ndoh.org

What is United Way  of  Ashland  County’s relationship  with United Way Worldwide?

United Way of Ashland County is a locally governed, autonomous organization. United Way Worldwide serves member United Ways by providing professional training, resources, research and consulting services. One percent of campaign dollars are paid to United Way Worldwide for membership. These membership dues are for professional training, marketing and advertising materials, research, government relations, media relations counsel, and a national corporate development program.

Why is Salvation  Army receiving  United Way  funding  when  they raised  over 2 million  dollars for the Ray and Joan Kroc Community Center?

The Salvation Army in Ashland was provided a grant through the estate of Joan Kroc to build a facility that would provide additional services to the Ashland community in the area of recreation, education and the arts. In order to receive this construction and endowment grant, the  local community  committed to  raise funds to  furnish the facility, as well as set up a local endowment  fund at the Ashland County Community  Foundation for  the continued  operation of the new center.

When the local and Kroc endowments are fully established, they will provide approximately 50% of the operating cost for the new facility, primarily supporting recreation, education and arts components of the programming. The remainder of the Salvation Army’s budget, including the assistance to individuals and family in the area of basic needs, are supported through United Way, private donations and fees for activities. The two specific local programs receiving funding from the Salvation Army are Hunger Assistance and Comprehensive Emergency Assistance for 2018.