United Way of Greater Cincinnati is proud to announce, because of the generous support of the greater Cincinnati community, $60,050,000 was raised during its 2017 community campaign. The campaign total, among the top 10 largest United Way campaigns in the country, was revealed at United Way’s finale October 27 at Duke Energy Convention Center. The amount raised represents 97% of the ambitious $62.2 million community goal announced August 24.
This accomplishment supports United Way’s mission to help create a community where everyone has an opportunity to thrive and the organization’s heightened focus on the one-in-three people in our region who are in poverty or cannot meet basic needs.
“I am incredibly proud of how our community came together for this meaningful work,” said Gary T. “Doc” Huffman, 2017 campaign chair and chairman, president, and chief executive officer of Ohio National Financial Services. “Thanks to hundreds of companies and thousands of supporters, many people in our community will be touched by this achievement. Despite a difficult year for a lot of our companies, and calls for help following incidents like natural disasters around the world, our community still stepped up to show its support here at home. Thank you to everyone who did their part.”
The community campaign is supported by almost 1,000 companies and nearly 90,000 individual donors. This year’s top fundraising companies include: P&G, GE Aviation, Fifth Third Bank, Western & Southern Financial Group, Cincinnati Bell, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Ohio National Financial Services, Macy's, Inc., The Kroger Co., and American Financial Group, Inc.
“Our community has gone through an incredible renaissance, but unfortunately too many people aren’t sharing in that renaissance,” said Rob Reifsnyder, United Way of Greater Cincinnati president. “We set this ambitious campaign goal because poverty is holding our community back. Nearly 600,000 people — including 200,000 children — are struggling and need us now more than ever. Our job doesn’t end today. We will continue working to meet our goal of $62.2 million. There is still an opportunity for individuals and companies to pitch in now and throughout the holiday season to ensure we meet the needs of all who struggle in our region.”
In spring of 2016, United Way convened nearly 100 community volunteers to meet, listen, and work together on a new process for investments. Local nonprofits responded overwhelmingly in support of this new direction. Beginning in 2018, the majority of United Way’s investments will support programs and solutions focused directly on serving those in poverty or unable to meet basic needs.
“In addition to new investment decisions, United Way will boldly change the way services and programs are delivered,” said Ross Meyer, senior vice president and chief impact officer, United Way of Greater Cincinnati. “We can no longer help a person or family with one single service. Instead, we must bring agencies and solutions together to address all the complex issues and barriers that hold people back.”
Final community investment decisions for 2018 will be approved by United Way’s board of directors in mid-December.
“Our collective work is only made possible by our caring community. Thank you for stepping up this year and showing everyone what we can accomplish when we choose to Live United,” Reifsnyder said. “I can’t wait to see the great things we accomplish together.”
The total reported October 27 includes some projected figures for workplace campaigns still underway. More than 80 percent of campaign pledges have been officially processed, while remaining donations will be processed in the coming months.
To support United Way of Greater Cincinnati, visit www.uwgc.org/give.