Thursday, February 14, 2013

United Way of Brevard Raises Over $6.5 million

Adrian Laffitte, United Way of Brevard's 2012 Campaign Chair, and his daughter Allie, who works for Publix, starred in the United Way campaign video.  They emphasized the message that no matter our age, income or job, we can all make a difference.

COCOA, Florida - The single largest community fundraiser for Brevard County raised $6,567,488, four percent over the organization's goal of $6.3 million. 


"It's was inspiring to see the outpouring of gifts from so many in our community," said Susan McGrath, Vice President of Resource Development of United Way of Brevard.  "What's even more exciting than surpassing our goal is the extra level of compassion our donors show to our community. They volunteer, they gave holiday gifts to lonely seniors, they supported extra fundraisers, all in addition to their annual pledges. Their commitment to those in need in our community is truly uplifting." 


The campaign kicked off with the help of the Canaveral Port Authority at their brand-new cruise terminal in Port Canaveral, topped off with a generous $10,000 gift from Carnival Cruise Lines.  The excitement carried through the fall with workplaces hosting creative activities to inspire their teams and motivate giving. Events such as Brevard County's carnival and chili cook-off, Florida Tech's departmental Penny Wars and Parrish Medical Center's Cupcake Challenge and origami Crane Drop contest all helped bring attention to the critical work United Way supports. 


In addition to employees in 328 workplace campaigns, community leaders, retirees and others across the community pitched in to raise funds. The largest campaign continues to be Harris Corporation, with $1,394,392 in support this year.  Publix Supermarkets associates increased their giving by more than any other group, raising more than $840,000, a 13 percent increase over 2011.  


United Way added that a number of other organizations had significant increases from last year, including the Brevard County Sheriff's Office, Florida Tech, Brevard Public Schools, and the Engineering Services Contract Team (QNA, SGT, ai solutions, EASI, Craig Technologies, Sierra Lobo and Nelson). 


United Way of Brevard says its purpose is to mobilize the caring power of the community by funding over 60 programs at 43 agencies, focusing on Basic Needs/Financial Stability, Childhood Success, Life Services for Persons with Disabilities, and Health, Wellness, and Safety initiatives. 


United Way of Brevard also facilitates VITA Tax Preparation Assistance, Financial Education, Healthy Families, Partners in Parenting, Gifts in Kind and the Benefits Connection programs.  United Way of Brevard has the lowest overhead cost of any United Way in Florida, at 8.5%.