October 12, 2015
This morning, as I have done for years, I spoke at a United Way campaign rally at a local company. Although the rallies are an opportunity to talk a little bit about Good Shepherd’s mission, the primary purpose is to highlight the impact of the United Way and to encourage folks to invest in the United Way’s annual campaign. I am happy to do that. Today it got me thinking about Good Shepherd’s partnership with the United Way—a relationship that long preceded my leadership. As you may know, the United Way funded each of the four agencies that merged to form Good Shepherd and had done so for decades. They supported Good Shepherd throughout the merger and throughout the difficult years that preceding my hiring, and they support us now—making up about 18% of our budget. They supported us in the reorganization that resulted in our expanded Maternity Program, and we’ve applied recently for some additional support to help us expand our Expectant Parent Program to include a footprint in St. Charles County and beyond. I can say without question that they have helped us be a stronger and more effective agency.
The United Way touches the lives of one out of every three people in the greater St. Louis area (including Illinois), which is pretty amazing. Despite the recent changes in the St. Louis philanthropic landscape and related changes in our own United Way funding, they remain far and away our biggest investor and a trusted partner. I give to the United Way now, just as I did before coming to Good Shepherd. I hope you consider doing so too.
Besides, I can’t ask anyone for money until after Halloween anyway! ;-)