President's Report, March: Ann Bax

What's United Way Been Up To

Article by Ann Bax,
United Way of Central Missouri President/CPO

United Way of Central Missouri is in our third month of our 92nd year, and we have lots of exciting things to share! In January Evers and Company completed United Way of Central Missouri’s annual audit confirming the United Way is fiscally sound and responsive to our generous community. In February the new Mobile Pantry Food Truck made its debut and served food to 151 hungry families from our community. We also held our Annual Meeting, which was a wonderful celebration of the successes of 2016, as well as an opportunity to honor outstanding individuals and business supporters who made that success possible. We hosted leaders from United Ways in Missouri for two days of best practice sharing including a morning at the Capitol to raise awareness of the health and human service needs in our community. In late February, Finance and Audit and Strategic Funding committee volunteers began their work to analyze audit results and develop recommendations for the Board of Directors regarding future United Way funding decisions.

Now here we are in March… it’s hard to believe the first quarter of 2017 is almost behind us! Thanks to the incredible support from our volunteers and supporters, we have accomplished so much, but there is much work still to be done! In the world of the United Way of Central Missouri, the month of March is consumed by the Fund Allocation process--which is actually the precursor to the next campaign. It is a volunteer-driven process that ensures transparency and accountability to United Way donors. Through this process, United Way of Central Missouri partner agencies must reapply for partnership and funding for the upcoming year. Six panels comprised of over 70 community volunteers with diverse skill sets meet each week for five weeks to review agency financials and applications, tour agency facilities, and have candid face-to-face discussions with the agency leaders and board members. Panel members analyze agency applications to confirm goals and program objectives have been accomplished, and make recommendations to the United Way Board of Directors whether fiscal responsibility and efficient operations dictate level funding, decreased funding, or increased funding for each partner agency for the upcoming year.

The other exciting thing going on in March and April will be vetting requests for the $80,000 in United Way of Central Missouri’s Community Support Grants, available to address critical unmet needs to 501(c)(3) health and human service agencies in the counties of Cole, Osage, Miller, Moniteau, Southern Callaway, Camden & Morgan.

While far from having arrived, we feel confident that we are on the right path to do more and better for our community. Once we are through the Fund Allocation and grant process, we will jump into campaign work with both feet. Needless to say our crackerjack Marketing Team is already working on strategies to help make this another great campaign. But equally important to the success of the United Way of Central Missouri are the efforts behind the scene that happen during the first half of the year. The audit, Fund Allocation and Grants processes make it possible to stand in front of our donors with confidence during the campaign and confirm that United Way and our agency partners are utilizing the gifts from our community to best address the priority needs of our community.