Central Region Challenge Match Raises Over $137,000 in Local Support
The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged our communities in ways we could have never imagined. Individuals and families are struggling to meet their basic needs, while planning for the future.
Concerns about the long-term economic impact of COVID-19 on their community inspired one generous family living in Granite United Way’s Central Region to sponsor a $50,000 challenge match to incentivize individuals and companies to get involved in their community through the Granite United Way campaign.
“While the spread of COVID-19 is well documented in the news, the devastating effects of this pandemic on family, friends, and neighbors are far less known,” said the family. “The Granite United Way has taken a strong leadership role in combating the far-reaching health and economic hardships resulting from this crisis.”
By providing a 2:1 match of any new or increased individual or corporate gifts, supporters were able to triple their donation and create an even bigger impact in the Central Region. Nearly 250 donors and 6 corporate partners raised over $137,000 for local nonprofits. These Matched dollars helped to leverage their services in mental health, food insecurity, housing assistance, substance misuse, crisis supports and other repercussions from COVID-19.
Lakes Region Community Services served as the Central Region HUB and helped to distribute COVID-19 Relief Fund donations, including gifts made through the challenge match, to other local social service agencies.
“This gift has had a tremendous impact on children and families in our area,” said Erin Pettengill, Vice President of the Family Resource Center at Lakes Region Community Services. “Working with other organizations in the Central Region allowed us to reach a much larger group of individuals in need.”
Youth-serving agencies like the Kingswood Youth Center witnessed first-hand many stories of resiliency among their families who were adapting to remote learning, job loss, and the ever-changing realities of COVID-19.
“To be able to watch families emerge from hardship, thanks to the help of these funds, was so meaningful,” said Zachary Porter, Executive Director of the Kingswood Youth Center.
Because of the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on mental health, agencies like Lakes Region Mental Health quickly began to recognize new barriers facing individuals who relied upon their services.
“During the stay-at-home mandate, many individuals stopped accessing their regular mental health services,” said Maggie Pritchard, CEO of Lakes Region Mental Health. “Our ability to reach out to our patients was impaired by the fact that many people were frightened to leave their homes.”
Donations made through the Central Region Challenge Match helped Lakes Region Mental Health offer important services remotely. Technology such as cell phones and internet access was provided to their clients as well as to their staff, removing the barrier of in-person meetings.
COVID-19 has also had a tremendous impact on the housing landscape in the Central Region. With vacancy rates at their lowest in thirty years, COVID-19 has exacerbated the housing affordability challenge in the region.
Agencies like Lakes Region Community Developers and New Beginnings Without Violence or Abuse leveraged the Central Region Challenge Match funds to support individuals in need of emergency housing assistance due to loss of job or inability to work.
“This gift has been really transformational for our organization,” said Carmen Lorentz, Executive Director of Lakes Region Community Developers.
The generous support of this family and their challenge match helped dozens of agencies in the Central Region maximize the impact of their services to help hundreds of families and individuals in need.
“We encourage each individual and business to be as generous as possible during the Granite United Way Annual Campaign in order to help those in our community who desperately need our support during these unprecedented times,” said the family.
If you are looking for a way to maximize the impact of your gift through a Challenge Match, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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