Archive for Thursday, December 15, 2011

United Way campaign still about $600,000 short of $1.7 million goal

December 15, 2011


Erika Dvorske, executive director of the Douglas County United Way, said she’s “cautiously optimistic” that the agency will meet its 2011 campaign goal of $1.7 million.

But with 2011 coming to a close, the agency is still about $600,000 short.

“We’ve got a ways to go,” Dvorske said.

Though the agency’s official fundraising campaign runs from September to the end of November, Dvorske said United Way will keep collecting until the end of the year, and make an official announcement about the campaign results in February.

Last year, the United Way raised $1.675 million.

Despite being behind this year, Dvorske said the community has stepped up “even in a challenging time.”

Dvorske praised the growth seen in several areas, particularly in several of the local employers they partner with. For instance, Kansas University staff and faculty exceeded their goal of a $312,000 combined contribution.

The United Way contributes to 29 community organization, focusing on education, health and self-sufficiency. To donate, visit


labmonkey 6 years, 6 months ago

Keep this middleman short of its goal... donate to your charity of choice directly!!!

Erika Dvorske 6 years, 6 months ago

Thanks to everyone who gives to all kinds of organizations across the community, whether it is through United Way or not! We invite everyone to be a philanthropist! United Way is just one way for people to invest locally in three goal areas: education, health and self sufficiency. United Way contributions stay local and support programming delivered by certified charities. While we invite people to give, we strongly discourage any kind of coercion. To learn more, please visit our website at

labmonkey 6 years, 6 months ago

And people should support their favorite local charities directly. These charities will receive a bigger cut since it doesn't have to go through the overhead of the United Way middleman. And as Mike Gerhart said above, some of the groups the United Way supports are questionable as charities.

50YearResident 6 years, 6 months ago

That $600,000 you need went to the shelter for out of town vagrants drawn to Lawrence for the luxuary living conditions..

Erin Graham 6 years, 6 months ago

Wow.. so much negativity! UW (at least the one here) does facilitate a lot of really good things for a lot of people and organizations.

Tom McCune 6 years, 6 months ago

Coercing subordinates in the workplace the way this organization does should be illegal. If your company has an HR policy against employees soliciting in the workplace -- and most companies do -- you should file a complaint with HR under that policy if your are solicited by UW at work.

deec 6 years, 6 months ago

The companies tend to do the coercing. I worked for one in which every employee group was required to have an in-house fundraiser (bake sale, etc), and multiple emails and letters were sent out inviting participation.

Alceste 6 years, 6 months ago

Let Erika Dvorske post her salary and benefit package to demonstrate just how little she is paid and to prove that the "overhead" of the Lawrence "United Way" is not like the rest of the United Way nation wide or at good ole United Way HQ.

I rather suspect she won't do it.

Alceste 6 years, 6 months ago


After reading what you wrote, the word "stupid" came to mind about the individual who would make such a leap "thought wise" and then post it....

That's a $35,000.00 per annum JOB (in Kansas wages).......

Getaroom 6 years, 6 months ago

So this means that not enough people have been squeezed at work(without choice) and other equally deserving organizations have been forced out of the loop and not allowed to "compete" during "United Ways Time". Who says bigger is better? Give directly to organizations who are in need. Doesn't matter if UW is giving to local community services, give to those you care about directly and stop supporting a large organization and it's operating cost needs. This is a self perpetuating - self aggrandizing operation that requires too much energy to sustain.
Having said that - get off your duffs and give, why do you need to be reminded by The Big Thermometer to do so? Their goal is only that, a goal and many more organizations who are not aligned with UW deserve support year round. They have for far too long squeezed out smaller organizations who benefit from seasonal fundraising. If not now - when? Give!

Alceste 6 years, 6 months ago

none2 (anonymous) replies… So you are saying that the job of an executive director of a non-profit organization should only be filled by a nun from the the Mission of Perpetual Poverty order?

December 17, 2011 at 12:01 p.m. ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ "none2" noted above on Dec. 17.

No reply from the "United Way"......only from "none2".

hmmmmmmm......wonder what the delay is?

Commenting has been disabled for this item.