Still time to give to United Way campaign

Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 17, 2004

As the United Way of the Greater Miss-Lou &045;&045; following some internal changes &045;&045; wraps up a somewhat low-key fund-raising campaign this year, board members were pleasantly surprised this week by a final donation from International Paper.

While employees of the now-closed Natchez mill gave $52,000, International Paper gave an additional $23,000 to United Way, which acts as an umbrella fund-raising organization for some 21 local agencies.

That final donation is important because of the huge role IP has had in United Way donations over the years. The mill has donated up to $75,000 per year to the Miss-Lou chapter for at least the last seven years. Last year, that represented a full 25 percent of money raised by the chapter.

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But as our economic conditions grow even more unstable &045;&045; admittedly, in part because of IP’s closure &045;&045; United Way has more people to help than ever.

And yet donations are dwindling.

In the final weeks of the year, many businesses are making their last push toward their own individual campaigns for United Way. We encourage everyone to take part in those campaigns and give what you can to help your community. Organizations from the Boys & Girls Club to the Guardian Shelter benefit from the money that United Way collects.

When these organizations receive help, our whole community benefits. The gift you pledge to United Way this year will come back to you several times over.

If that isn’t enough to convince you, think about how fairly amazing it is that so many IP workers gave before leaving the mill, and many are probably still doing what they can to help out.

All of us have the ability to share our good fortune.