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Day of Caring

United Way sets goal of $100K

POSTED: September 19, 2012 4:00 a.m.
Michele Hester Dawson Community News/

Gary Vaughters with BB&T cleans brush Friday outside the Adult Learning Center during United Way’s annual Day of Caring.

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United Way for Dawson County announced its fundraising goal at a breakfast Friday morning before volunteers set out into the community for a day of service.

The organization plans to raise $100,013 over the next few months to benefit partner agencies such as Rape Response, 4-H, Reading Education Association of Dawson County and the American Red Cross, among others.

Campaign chairman Bryan Hendrix said he knows the community is facing tough economic times and understands the goal may be difficult to reach.

"It's going to take a lot of help to get there. Anything that you could give would be greatly appreciated," he said at the breakfast.

The campaign kickoff event, which included a slideshow profiling United Way's work in the community through its 13 partner agencies, was also a stage to recognize people, businesses and civic groups for their commitment to volunteering during the annual Day of Caring.

"We'd like to thank everybody that contributes to United Way every year. Your gifts are much appreciated," Hendrix said.

R.E.A.D. Director Sandy Lipkowitz thanked employees at BB&T and members of the Kiwanis Club for the hours they spent doing yardwork and cleaning carpets at Lanier Technical College's Dawson County Adult Learning Center.

"It means the world to us because our carpets have never been cleaned, because it hasn't been in the budgets. We are so excited," she said.

"United Way helping us like this not only saves us money, but it shows us our friends of R.E.A.D. and that's of the utmost importance in what we're trying to do. It's just an overwhelming feeling to know the support that we're getting from this community."

Volunteers also fanned out to No One Alone, a domestic violence shelter for women, and the Dawson County Senior Center, where they peeled apples.

Hendrix and Shane Findley said the apple effort has become a tradition for the two friends.

"We've been doing this for five years. It's our way of giving back to the community," Hendrix said.

Findley works in Jasper, but felt the need to continue his Day of Caring duties locally.

"We've been doing this for so long that it wouldn't feel right if we didn't come over here," he said.

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