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United Way meets 95% of its 2013 campaign goal

United Way of the Adirondack Region, Inc. Executive Director John Bernardi, left, and the 2013 Campaign Chair Gayle Alexander helped raise $736,250 to support local agencies during the United Way’s 2012 campaign.

United Way of the Adirondack Region, Inc. Executive Director John Bernardi, left, and the 2013 Campaign Chair Gayle Alexander helped raise $736,250 to support local agencies during the United Way’s 2012 campaign. Photo by Shaun Kittle.

— The United Way of the Adirondack Region, Inc. raised most of its campaign goal for 2012.

Even though they fell short—the campaign brought in $736,250, that’s $38,750 less than the goal of $775,000—United Way volunteers said that isn't anything to be ashamed of.

“For us, it isn’t just about measuring the dollars and cents, it’s about measuring the level of impact we’re able to make throughout the region,” said John Bernardi, Executive Director of United Way of the Adirondack Region. “We do anticipate that we will be able to substantially meet the health and human service needs at a similar level to past years, and for that we’re very proud,”

Those service needs include 41 health and human-service organizations in Clinton, Essex and Franklin counties, whose agencies provide help to about 80,000 people throughout the region each year.

“I always prayed that we would be able to meet the needs of the North Country and at 95 percent, that’s what we got,” said Gayle Alexander, the 2013 Campaign Chair.

Dan Alexander, the 2009 Campaign Chair, said several factors, such as a sluggish economy and 2012’s looming fiscal cliff, might have contributed to the United Way falling short of its goal, but that those things were just evidence of a greater good amongst North Country citizens.

“This perhaps may compare to an overwhelmingly greater amount of generosity from people this year than in past years,” Mr. Alexander said. “The amount that was raised in this economy is an overwhelming success.”

The United Way has been collecting donations and distributing 100 percent of them to various local agencies and charities since 1949.

Since so many organizations need help, there is an extensive process to allocating the funds.

Some donations are designated by donors to go directly toward specific agencies but other funds, like the community impact fund, are available to partner agencies on a competitive basis.

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