Communities can be very powerful places when everyone gets involved. As the saying goes, “Many hands make light the work.” Volunteering is an easy way to lend a hand, but the work of volunteers isn’t always obvious – or easy. While some are out in public supporting the work of a nonprofit organization, there are countless other volunteers behind the scenes making things happen.
Volunteers at Granite United Way take on a unique mission; each fall they come together to raise over a million dollars to support the annual campaign. While some donors designate how or where their contribution is to be used, other donors contribute to a larger fund called the “allocable pool.” Each spring, they work together to decide how this pool of funds will be distributed to meet the needs in our community. Altogether, this not a small undertaking.
As fundraising came to a close, the local Community Impact Committee received and reviewed nearly 60 grant applications from area nonprofits. Together with volunteer grant reviewers, the committee considered the needs of the community and awarded funding to local nonprofits. Volunteers read and evaluated pages of applications, met with each applying organization and finally made the tough decision of how to best utilize available funds.
From the first dollar raised to the last dollar granted, this volunteer effort supports dozens of agencies and thousands of people. “The United Way has been an important partner for us in terms of helping fulfill our mission,” said Allison Colburn, Executive Director at The Child Care Center in Norwich. “Funding helps us offset our sliding scale fee and scholarship fund – making childcare affordable and accessible to all families.”