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Letter: United Way chair urges groups to apply for funding


Program applications for funding from United Way of Goodhue, Wabasha and Pierce Counties are now available.

We are encouraging organizations to apply for funding in 2009. Over the past four years, our board has been working to increase accountability to our donors. To do so, we have chosen to focus on human service issues in our service area, where a combined community effort can have a measurable impact on improving the lives of our citizens. This change in philosophy has resulted in significant changes in the content of applications for United Way funding and the process for doing so.

The areas on which we are focused are: assuring all children are ready to learn when they enter kindergarten; assuring students graduate from high school; reducing chronic disease by concentrating on increased physical activity and healthy nutrition; increasing access to dental and mental health care; and improving the economic stability of vulnerable families and individuals through increased income, increased savings and attaining and maintaining assets.

These, along with basic needs of food, clothing and shelter, were selected by reviewing the results of two extensive needs assessments, examining data collected by the government and other sources, and through discussions with expert panels. While the topics are broad, we think they are narrow enough to measure change over time.

The deadline to apply for funds is Jan. 16. If an organization is interested in applying for funding, they are encouraged to contact the United Way office at 651-388-6309 for further information. The United Way website,, also has information on the application process.

Karen Main

Chair, United Way Board of Directors

Director of Goodhue County (Minn.) Public Health Department

Red Wing