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United Way completes funding process

With the finalization of the annual funds distribution process, Lycoming County United Way (LCUW), through its various funding programs, has provided $1,356,932 to support the work of human service programs benefiting Lycoming County residents.

 “While most visible during the course of our annual fall campaign, Lycoming County United Way continually collaborates with a variety of sources to maximize funding streams that can help support the work of our county’s human service network,” said Scott N. Lowery, LCUW executive director. “We are extremely proud of our donors, volunteers and associated programs that have combined to provide more than 1.3 million dollars to assist in this effort.”

 Beginning in late April, more than 70 volunteers, divided among five community needs panels, met with representatives of service providers to complete the funds distribution process, allocating $930,305, to human service programs serving Lycoming County. Each program was evaluated for its efficiency of operation, financial accountability, and impact within the community. Recommendations for funding to those programs were presented to the LCUW Board of Directors at its May meeting. The Board approved the recommendations, putting to work the generosity of LCUW’s donors.

 “Each year, contributors to the LCUW campaign entrust us with their dollars to distribute them in a manner that will do the most good within our Lycoming County community,” said Tom O’Connell, volunteer chair of the LCUW funds distribution committee. “Once again, the volunteers charged with this difficult task of allocating limited resources did a tremendous job.”

 “Although we had $47,727 more than last year to allocate, the requests for funding we received totaled $176,723 more than we had to give. The various programs we fund are all providing valuable services to the residents of Lycoming County, but it is impossible to meet 100% of each request,” explained O’Connell. “I continue to be impressed with the volunteer’s thoroughness and thoughtfulness when evaluating the programs. They understand they represent the thousands of individuals who generously donate to United Way and they take the responsibility seriously to effectively put those dollars into positive action.”

 This was a unique year for the allocations process, according to O’Connell.

 “This was a year of challenge, innovation, and fulfillment. It was a challenge to not have enough money to fulfill every request. It was a year of innovation because we utilized an online application and review process rather than hefty 3-ring binders with all of the information printed out. And a year of fulfillment once again, the process always leaves me with a feeling of accomplishment.”

 LCUW funds were distributed to the following programs, comprising five community needs Impact Areas.

 Caring for people in crisis – $246,500

American Rescue Workers

            Comprehensive Emergency Assistance Program – $100,000

Diakon Family Life Services

            Family & Individual Counseling – $80,000

Journey House – $18,000

North Central PA Chapter of the American Red Cross

            Disaster – $40,000

YWCA of North Central Pennsylvania

            Court Appointed Special Advocate – $21,000

            Liberty House – $34,000

            Wise Options – $53,500

Nurturing our children – $157,664

Campbell Street Center

            After School Program – $25,500

            Sunsational – $22,500

Diakon Family Life Services

Girls on the Run – $10,000

River Valley Regional YMCA

            Childcare – $55,000

            Youth Program – $12,500

Susquehanna Council Boy Scouts of America

            Youth development – $12,164

Valley Prevention Services

            Youth education on substance abuse – $20,000


Serving those with special needs – $319,375

Children’s Development Center

            Autism – $15,500

            Health – $32,000

            Pre-school – $42,000

            Speech Therapy – $40,000

Hope Enterprises

            Transportation – $63,875

North Central Sight Services

            Prevention of Blindness – $10,000

            Social Services – $16,000

Strengthening our families – $149,000

James V. Brown Library

            The Learning Center tutoring program – $35,000

Jersey Shore Branch YMCA

            Brick House Program – $39,000

STEP, Inc.

            Linkage Lycoming – $40,000

Susquehanna Health

            Nurse Family Partnership – $35,000

Supporting our seniors – $32,298

North Central PA Chapter of the American Red Cross

            Health & Safety – $7,298

Office of Aging

            Congregate Meals – $6,000

            Meals-on-Wheels – $7,000

River Valley Regional YMCA

            Seniors Program – $12,000

In addition, LCUW funded $25, 468 to the following outreach programs:

American Red Cross (Service to Armed Forces) – $5,000

Central Pennsylvania Food Bank – $7,165

East Lycoming Library – $974

East Lycoming School Health (Dental) – $1,000

Jersey Shore Library – $1,108

Montgomery Library – $960

Montgomery School Health (Dental) – $960

Montoursville Library – $950

Muncy Library – $1,351

Muncy School Health (Dental) – $1,000

Shepherd of the Street (Dental) – $5,000

“We understand the complex needs of our community and under the careful scrutiny of local volunteers, we provide funding to a network of effective program partners to address those needs – or we launch new impact initiatives that will,” said John Brunette, president of LCUW’s board of directors. “We strive to get to the heart of problems and create lasting change. We very carefully consider how to best invest our donors’ money in progressive programs to address the county’s issues.”

 While the focus of LCUW funding has an outcomes-based emphasis, its’ mission to “mobilize resources to improve lives” and utilization of community volunteers has not changed.

 “The volunteer panel review of our Program Partners still remains vital to the United Way concept,” added Brunette. “It ensures accountability among the programs we help fund, transparency in the funding process, and the careful stewardship of donors’ investments in United Way. It is an important responsibility that is taken very seriously by all involved.”

 LCUW allocates an additional funding of $38,172 through “Impact Initiatives”- grants for programs that provide a new service or enhance an existing program. Based on the 2009 Community Needs Assessment and the Pennsylvania Youth Survey, this year’s Impact Initiatives will focus on programs serving the needs of middle school age children (grades five thru eight) by providing programs that encompass the needs of the entire family, especially stability issues and other risk factors, as well as incorporate parental involvement in the program.

Those announced allocations will be distributed to the various programs monthly beginning in August, according to O’Connell.

 Additional United Way administered LCUW funding includes $184,234 to sub-recipients of federal grants, $100,000 in Act 137 funds to assist in the establishment of Saving Grace, a family shelter addressing homelessness, $50,000 for early childhood education programs, $45,791 in donor-designated contributions that are distributed to non-LCUW affiliated non-profit programs and $8,430 for early dental hygiene programs .


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