Our Opinion: Help the United Way, help the community

Published 5:23 pm Tuesday, September 21, 2021

The United Way of Mower County recently kicked off its 2021 Community Campaign, an effort that has put its crosshairs on a goal of $1,275,000, up over the nearly $1,100,000 the campaign raised last year.

However, to reach its goal, it will need the community’s help, as it has done for years.

The challenges we all face from the COVID-19 pandemic have been steep and have put pressure on all of us. It’s changed our way of life and pinched our pocket books, but helping the United Way of Mower County helps Austin.

UWMC supports over 20 local nonprofits that work to help citizens of Mower County directly. Oftentimes this help comes in the form of life-changing services when people need help the most.

Raising over $1 million is never easy, but Austin and Mower County has proven to be populated by giving people and giving organizations who recognize what the United Way does each and every day.

And this year, much like last year, people are going to need help more than ever. In a press release last week, the UWMC included some troubling figures.

According to the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development’s latest report on the socio economic impacts of COVID-19 in Minnesota, 24% of households are struggling to pay for basic expenses, 9% of  families are experiencing childcare disruptions, 16% of individuals expect a loss of employment income, 6% of households are experiencing food scarcity and hunger, and 28% of households are likely to receive eviction notices in the next two months.

It’s because of these numbers that the United Way is so important. If you haven’t before, we urge you to help out this year to ensure that those dollars, through the good work the United Way is doing, get to those people and organizations who need it.