United Way looks for more support

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Over $42,000 in local projects funded

By The Staff

    SHEPHERDSVILLE - Companies and employees have been generous in their support over the past eight years for the Metro United Way’s campaigns in Bullitt County.

    But there is so much more potential.

    The task for Roberta Steutermann, donor relationship manager for Bullitt, Oldham and Shelby counties, and the Bullitt County chapter board is to increase the contributions to meet the ever-growing needs.

    During the 2009 funding cycle, over $80,000 in requests came from Bullitt County agencies, most of those dealing with children and education. With the funds raised in Bullitt County and by local residents who work in Jefferson County but earmark their contributions to go back home, grants of over $42,000 were awarded.

    Marc Prasch, chairman of the local campaign, said the goal is to get more businesses and residents involved in what is really an easy and painless process.

    He said that 100 percent of the funds raised in Bullitt County, stay in Bullitt County.

    “They don’t go off to other counties,” said Prasch.

    Steutermann said there is that unmet need that is so difficult on board members.

    “There are needs which we just can’t meet without the community’s support,” said Steutermann.

    While fund-raising and promotion of the Metro United Way continues year-round, there is a big push the final three months.

    Susan Bradbury, instrumental in getting a local chapter started with the support of her employer, First Federal Savings Bank, said there was some hesitation in the beginning.

    The fear was that the money would go to Jefferson County and the original campaign only involved those who worked elsewhere and wanted to designate their contributions to Bullitt County.

    The only original member remaining on the board, Bradbury said the companies and the individuals have all jumped on board over the years but there is so much potential.

    “It’s so easy to do,” said Prasch, also a First Federal employee.

    Steutermann said she is available to come out to businesses that would like more information. She is available to talk with employees.

    She said some employers even match employee contributions. At Johnson and Johnson’s facility in Shepherdsville, the company matches each dollar. First Federal contributes 50 cents on every $1.

    She praised both companies for their support of the program over the years.

    “The support from those participating has been very strong,” said Steutermann. “We’re just hoping for more to get involved.”

    A major push this year was the participation by Publishers Printing and Zappos. The school system is also pledging to have more participation in the coming year.

    The mission of the entire Metro United Way has been to focus on funding agencies that have education, especially for children, at the heart of their programs.

    Two years ago, the Bullitt County board took on education as its main criteria for awarding grants.

    Anyone wishing to get involved with the Metro United Way’s program in Bullitt County, should contact Steutermann at 502-292-5476. To see more information about the Metro United Way organization, go to www.metrounitedway.org