The United Way of Greater St. Louis is seeking $71 million to fund programs throughout the area in 2012.
The United Way's 2011 fundraising drive kicked off in September and runs through early November.
“Not since the Great Depression have so many people felt the degree of need, desperation and fear as they do now,” said Danny Ludeman, CEO of Wells Fargo Advisors and 2011 United Way campaign chair. “The weak economy and persistent unemployment are increasing the need for more and human services for more people. Unfortunately, this is occurring just as the agencies that provide those vital services are being pinched by cuts in government funding – an estimated $30 million this year alone.”
Ludeman made his comments at a United Way kickoff event, according to a press release.
The United Way of Greater St. Louis invests more than $1 million each week to help one in three people through more than 170 local agencies it funds.
A History of Helping
The United Way of Greater St. Louis began in 1922 as the Community Fund, organized by volunteers to raise money to help operate 40 charities.
Today, the United Way of Greater St. Louis provides a wider social safety net, both in geographic scope and the number of agencies it supports.
In the late 1970s, the St. Louis office merged with the United Way in Swansea, IL to create an Illinois Division. An auxiliary board for St. Charles, Lincoln and Warren Counties was established in 1980, which is now the Tri-County Division.
In 1995, the United Way of Greater St. Louis entered into a partnership with the Washington United Fund, now the Franklin County Area United Way.
The Tri-Cities Area Division in the southern part of Madison County, IL, was added in September 1999, and the Southwest Illinois Division, covering Jersey, Calhoun, Greene, Macoupin and northern Madison counties, was added in December 2001.
The United Way of Greater St. Louis operates independently, meaning the money that is raised here stays here. More than 90 cents of every dollar raised is allocated to local agencies.
In St. Charles County, the United Way funds the following agencies:
- United Services, Inc.
- Community Council of St. Charles County