United Way investment requests at a record-high

Courtesy of the United Way.

Photo courtesy of the United Way.

A popular umbrella non-profit is seeing record-breaking requests for support from local agencies in Northwest Michigan.

The request for support coming into the Charlevoix-Emmet United Way is nearing $300,000 – some $60,000 more than last year.

United Way officials said there are more requests for help than they have ever seen.

Recently, Executive Director with the Charlevoix-Emmet United Way, Lorraine Manary, replaced the former director.

She said it takes some time to get up to speed with the director position especially with such a heavy load.

“We are close to 70% of our goal, and our goal is to raise $425,000 this year, so we’ve got a little ways to go,” Manary said. “If we don’t reach that, obviously we aren’t going to be able to fund all of the requests that come in at the level they have.”

While Manary is confident that the organization will reach its goal, she says there is a process to prioritize which organizations are funded and which are not.

“We actually invite donors each year to to come and sit in on review panels to look at the grants,” she said. “They look at the organization, their stability, the effectiveness of the program, if it was funded in the past or if it was new and does it fit into our community identified priority areas for funding.”

Manary said United Way donors make recommendations on who to fund after hearing from each organization.

From there, the United Way makes its decisions.

Information about fundraising and United Way in Michigan can be found on its website.

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