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United Way Presents Strategy Update
Prince Frederick, MD - 5/16/2012
By Marty Madden
United Way of Calvert continues its new direction of service for county residents in four focus areas. During the Calvert County Commissioners’ May 15 meeting, Jennifer Moreland, the local United Way’s director of Community Impact, updated the board on how the strategy is working.
While Moreland’s report was well-received, local United Way officials were taken to task by one county commissioner regarding an organization that fell through the cracks when the strategy was implemented.
The four focus areas of the five-year strategic plan are school readiness, youth engagement, financial stability and healthy lifestyles. The focus strategy represented a departure from the way the organization had previously done business.
“We are not simply funding programs anymore,” said Moreland.
From its modest beginnings in 1980, United Way of Calvert County has grown as an organization serving 31 partner agencies. In its history the local United Way has raised $13 million and the money has been kept in the county.
The biggest chunk of funding (65 percent) comes from contributions from employees participating in the organization’s payroll deduction plan. Only 15 percent of the funds are used for administration. “We are proud of our low overhead,” said Moreland.
“In the fall of 2011, the United Way of Calvert County [UWCC] Board of Directors awarded funding to 17 local organizations for programs and projects that address UWCC’s four chosen focus areas,” stated Department of Community Resources Director Maureen Hoffman.
One of the organizations not receiving funds was Calvert County Special Olympics. That drew the concern of Commissioner Evan K. Slaughenhoupt Jr. [R], who expressed disappointment about the board of directors’ decision.
“That really hurt them,” said Slaughenhoupt.
“People can still support Special Olympics through United Way,” said Moreland, who indicated designation of a check for a specific partner agency would ensure that money would go to a preferred cause.
Special Olympics’ mission is to provide sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-style sports for citizens with intellectual disabilities. Later, Slaughenhoupt was asked if Special Olympics’ mission would qualify it as an organization addressing healthy lifestyles.
“I would think,” said the commissioner. Slaughenhoupt added that the local organization does not receive much funding from Special Olympics Maryland. He added that individuals sending contributions to the local organization should indicate on checks that the money is for “Special Olympics Maryland Calvert County.”
“This is a fine organization,” said UWCC Board of Directors Chairman Tom Hejl of the local United Way. He conceded the decision not to include Special Olympics in the funding picture was regrettable
A written summary of the local United Way’s strategic program did point out that “Calvert Can: Eat Right! Move More!—a joint initiative between United Way and Calvert Memorial Hospital (CMH)—offers a wellness program for clients and staff of The ARC of Southern Maryland.
This Saturday, May 19, the Calvert Can Community Health Carnival will be held on the CMH campus FROM 1 - 5 p.m. Anyone with questions should call 410-535-8233.
Special Olympics Maryland Calvert County is holding its ninth annual Inspiration 5K Run/Walk the same day at Calvert Marine Museum in Solomons. Registration begins at 9 a.m. and the race begins at 10 a.m. Anyone with questions about that event should call 410-535-2857.
Contact Marty Madden at firstname.lastname@example.org
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