Lycoming County United Way recently finalized its 2013 Funds Distribution process and, through its various funding programs, has provided $1,404,340 to support the work of human service programs benefiting Lycoming County residents.
“As is becoming increasingly evident the challenge of trying to meet growing human service community needs with a shrinking pool of available resources makes it nearly impossible for ‘go it alone solutions,’” said Scott N. Lowery, LCUW Executive Director. “Meaningful solutions require collaboration from a variety of sources to make things work. That is what Lycoming County United Way is all about, mobilizing resources to improve lives. We are most grateful to the donors who have placed their trust in us, our volunteers who give unselfishly of their time to support our mission and to our Program Partners who provide the direct services our fundraising efforts make possible. We will continue with our attempt to expand our collaborative efforts that in turn will improve the quality of life for those who call Lycoming County home.”
More than 60 volunteers trained to review programs within five community needs panels met with representatives of service providers to complete the funding process, allocating $1,041,886 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, allowing Lycoming County United Way to successfully put to work the generosity of its donors.
“Our volunteers take on a very challenging task when they sign up to be a panel member with Lycoming County United Way,” said Tom O’Connell, volunteer chair of the LCUW funds distribution committee. “Not only are our volunteers taking personal time from their own jobs to review the information provided by our funded Program Partners, but they are also faced with the task of determining if a program outside of their own familiarity is functioning at its best.”
The challenge, O’Connell added, is that Lycoming County United Way does not fund agencies, but rather programs within human service agencies.
“This means volunteers must really decide whether a funding request from a local human service organization is falling within our guidelines of administering a program that is meeting the needs of the community,” O’Connell said. “We cannot simply fund an agency for its operational costs. But if that agency brings to us a valid program that can demonstrate measurable outcomes, that’s when we are able to really see our dollars put to good use.”
“The Allocations process is unique because it gives our volunteers an opportunity to interact with our Program Partners and have a very thoughtful discussion regarding the needs of the community and how to address them,” said Allen W. Kiessling, LCUW Vice President. “This dialogue benefits our Program Partners by offering them ideas and solutions to issues they may not have thought of and benefits our volunteers, including me, by giving them a much greater appreciation for the needs in the community and the urgency to address them. Together, that is a huge benefit to our community and the beneficiaries of these services.”
The 2013-2014 beneficiaries, comprising the five community needs Impact areas include:
Caring for people in crisis – $277,000
Counseling Services – $88,000
Diakon Family Life Services
Liberty House – $40,000
Wise Options – $56,000
YWCA Northcentral PA
Susquehanna Valley CASA – $40,000
Disaster Services - $25,000
North Central Pennsylvania Chapter American Red Cross
Transitional Housing – $28,000
Nurturing our children – $151,600
Summer of Fun – $36,000
Campbell Street Center
Girls on the Run – $10,000
Diakon Family Life Services
Youth Mentoring – $15,000
Childcare Program – $58,000
Williamsport Branch RVR YMCA
Youth Substance Abuse Education – $32,600
Valley Prevention Services, Inc.
Serving those with special needs – $353,623.00
Autism/Therapeutic Preschool Program – $125,000
Children’s Development Center
Transportation/Special Needs – $66,623
Hope Enterprises, Inc.
Prevention of Blindness – $12,000
Social Services/Vision Impaired – $20,000
North Central Sight Services
Emergency Program/Shelter – $130,000
American Rescue Workers
Strengthening our families – $135,000
The Learning Center – $70,000
Lycoming County Library System
Nurse Family Partnership – $40,000
Susquehanna Home Care and Hospice
Brick House Youth Program – $25,000
Jersey Shore Branch RVR YMCA
Supporting our seniors – $25,295
Senior Wellness Program – $10,000
Williamsport Branch RVR YMCA
Senior Transportation – $15,295
In addition, LCUW funded $41,368.16 to the following Outreach programs:
- Service to the Armed Forces (American Red Cross) – $5,000
- Food Distribution Center (Central Pennsylvania Food Bank) – $13,821.43
- Emergency Dental (Shepherd of the Streets) – $9,191.70
- Summer Reading Program
East Lycoming – $1,386.33
Jersey Shore – $1,506.28
Montgomery – $1,265.45
Montoursville – $2,105.50
- School Health
East Lycoming – $1,500
Montgomery – $1,089.45
Muncy – $2,351.01
These announced allocations will be distributed to the various programs on a monthly basis beginning in July.
While the focus of LCUW funding has an outcomes-based emphasis, its mission to “mobilize resources to improve lives” and the utilization of community volunteers has not changed.
“What opened my eyes is the idea that our resources are more than just dollars and cents,” Kiessling said. “Of course that aspect is essential, but we are mobilizing other resources through the Allocations process including the resources of time, talent and ideas to make our community better each and every day.”
LCUW also allocates an additional $32,244 in specialized grants for programs that provide a new service or enhance an existing program.
In collaboration with a variety of additional funding sources LCUW-administered funding includes $198,988 to sub-recipients of federal grants, $131,222 in donor-designated contributions that are distributed to non-LCUW-affiliated nonprofit programs.
For more information about Lycoming County United Way, call 570-323-9448 or visit www.development.lcuw.org.