BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
KEOKUK – More than 26 county agencies were given funds as part of the annual United Way of the Great River Region on Wednesday.
Funds totaling more than $125,000 were handed out as part of the annual luncheon held at the First Christian Church.
Jason Dixon, the new president of the group, said the group is still working its way through the merger process that began in March of 2016 when the United Way agencies throughout Lee County, Iowa, Hancock County, Illinois, and Clark County, Mo. joined together under the new flag and consolidated services and fundraising activities.
Dixon said the group is looking at the future of the fundraising campaign and is open to new ideas.
“We would eventually like to have some events in each county, with the potential of increasing the amount of assistance we can provide. But we’re still working through a lot of this merger,” Dixon said.
New director Karen Thie, who was hired in December after Jaclyn Lansing left the post this summer, said the agency was able to help 26 groups this year.
“We obviously had a lot of applications this year. We gave different amounts based on need and the grant process. We would like to be able to give all these agencies more money but we work with what we have,” she said.
Several fundraisers are being planned this year including the annual golf outings and corporate campaigns. Officers from local industries were also recognized at the event for spearheading United Way employee campaigns throughout the year. Thie said this year’s corporate campaign will begin in September.