Archive for Thursday, September 20, 2007

Using automobiles as billboards generates interest in United Way

September 20, 2007


Stacey Lamb has turned her orange Volkswagen bug into a moving billboard.

Lamb and about 10 other supporters of the United Way of Douglas County fundraising campaign have stuck large magnets on the sides of their vehicles to promote the benefits of giving to the organization.

Their target audience: Lawrence commuters.

"I thought it would be neat to stand by the turnpike and hold up a sign, but you can't really do that," Lamb said.

Instead, Lamb - who commutes to Hallmark Cards in Kansas City every day - decided to make large magnets with the slogan "It takes all of us to make a difference."

Organizers said the magnets - which feature the word ALL in big black letters - have served their purpose. They're causing people to ask questions in parking lots, gas stations and downtown.

"It makes people curious, and then that gives us an opportunity to talk about United Way," said Chuck Warner, president of US Bank's Lawrence operations and co-chairman of the United Way campaign.

The main message United Way leaders are trying to get to commuters is that it is easy for them to give to the Douglas County United Way even if they work in Topeka or Kansas City. The United Way has a system in place where if an individual gives through their place of employment, the donation can be earmarked to go to the Douglas County division of United Way.

"We don't think a lot of people are aware of that, and it has gotten to be more of an issue because we're more of a bedroom community," Warner said.

Douglas County United Way leaders are hoping to raise $1.7 million as part of the campaign. The proceeds are used to support qualifying nonprofit organizations throughout the county.


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