Trudi Alexander and Theresa Jacoby teach people how to raise funds for a charitable cause.
As loaned executives, they instruct businesses about how to collect donations for the United Way of the Laurel Highlands during the nonprofit organization’s annual campaign drives, which run from September through the end of the year.
The companies then implement the suggestions they feel will best help them get donations. Some provide workers the chance to have contributions directly withheld from their paychecks. Others hold events or simply put a donation jar on the counter.
By whatever means, money is raised to help the local United Way chapter that works with partner agencies in Cambria and Somerset counties.
“I work with them to form a plan that will work best with their companies,” said Alexander, a retired Somerset resident with a health care background.
The women each help about
10 businesses per year.
Along with offering advice, Alexander, Jacoby and other loaned executives provide information about the United Way.
“We try to get the word out about the positive things the United Way is doing in the community,” said Jacoby, an Ebensburg resident and AmeriServ Financial executive.
Jacoby and Alexander have personal connections to the United Way.
Alexander’s granddaughter was born with cerebral palsy and received help from a United Way partner agency as a child.
“Today, she is a productive member of society,” Alexander said.
Jacoby’s mother, Sue Stevens, is the agency’s community relationship manager. “There is a deep-rooted reason why I help the United Way,” said Jacoby. “First of all, I’m really passionate about their goals. Second, I want to give back to my community.”
So far, the United Way of the Laurel Highlands has raised $212,000 during this year’s campaign. Its goal is $1.1 million.
Dave Sutor is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/Dave_Sutor.