United Way of Inner Wisconsin
About United Way of Inner Wisconsin
- Mission Statement
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Board of Directors and Committees
- Annual Report
- 501(c)3 Letter
- Our 990 Form
- View our financial data on GuideStar
An Overview of United Way of Inner Wisconsin
- United Way advances the common good by creating opportunities for a better life for all. At United Way of Inner Wisconsin, the building blocks for a better life include Education, Income and Health.
We all win...
- ... when a child succeeds in school, when a neighborhood turns around, when families have good health and are financially stable. United Way of Inner Wisconsin helps to make steady advances in society by identifying and addressing our communities’ most vital human needs, with benefits that will ripple out to the community as a whole. It takes a whole community working together to reach our goals. We will continue to make progress so our children have a better future!
- We invite you to join us, to bring your passion, expertise and resources together to get things done all across the community! Don’t just wear the shirt, LIVE IT!
Our Mission Statement:
- To identify and address our communities' most vital human needs.
- In 1942 the South Wood County Community War Chest was incorporated. It was later ammended to the South Wood County Community Chest.
- In 1958 our organization experienced another name change, the South Wood County United Fund, Inc. and raised $72,000 in its first-ever annual campaign.
- In 1972, there was another name change, to United Way of South Wood County, and the Helping Hand Logo was introduced nationally and adopted locally.
- In 1974, our first office was located in downtown Wisconsin Rapids; our first executive director was hired in 1975.
- The Planned Giving and Endowment Program was established in 1984.
- The Volunteer Center was added in 1990.
- In 1992, we celebrated our 50th Anniversary.
- In 2000, we moved into our current location at 351 Oak Street, Wisconsin Rapids.
- A final name change was implemented in 2007 when we incorporated the Adams County campaign and became United Way of Inner Wisconsin.
Frequently Asked Questions:
- What does United Way do?
We advance the common good! We understand that when we are united and working together for the benefit of all, we can create lasting change! We accomplish this through the work of our partner programs, our internal programs and projects, community collaborative efforts and community initiatives. We need your help, so we invite you to join us.
- Why should I give through United Way?
According to our constituents (during a recent online survey), here are the top 10 reasons to give to United Way of Inner Wisconsin!
10.) Your gift helps 45 programs at 28 local agencies.
9.) United Way ensures accountability.
8.) People trust United Way.
7.) Combining donations with others makes a stronger impact.
6.) It’s easy [through payroll deduction or pledging online].
5.) It’s safe. You can be sure your donation will make a difference.
4.) Your gift ensures south Wood and Adams Counties continue to be great places to live.
3.) Working together we can make a difference in our communities.
2.) It feels good to give!
1.) My gift stays in my community.
- Can I trust United Way with my money?
Absolutely! And here’s why: United Way funding decisions are directed by community volunteers and we are able to maintain a low overhead due to our reliance on a large number of volunteers. Our Review Panels and Community Impact Committee volunteers review each program funded through United Way to be sure that they are effective and fiscally responsible. United Way of Inner Wisconsin also meets the standards of membership with United Way Worldwide and is reviewed annually by an independent auditing firm.
- Who decides where the money goes?
People like you, right here in south Wood & Adams Counties. Volunteers from all walks of life review program applications, visit agencies, make all funding recommendations to our Board of Directors and prioritize the needs in the community to ensure that your dollars are being spent wisely and efficiently.
- Will the money go outside the community?
No. The money raised in south Wood County stays in south Wood County and money raised in Adams County stays in Adams County, unless you - the donor - request that it be sent to another United Way or area.
- Who sets the policy for our local United Way?
People who live and work in our community are making all policy decisions for your United Way. United Way of Inner Wisconsin is governed by a local Board of Directors, comprised of business and community leaders, and assisted by scores of volunteers from the community.
- How much are your administrative costs?
United Way of Inner Wisconsin maximizes resources so that more of your contribution goes toward helping people. In fact, only 18 cents of every dollar raised goes towards administration and fundraising costs. This is LESS than the national average for some of the most well-known and respected charities in the United States.
- Why should I give? I'll never need the services of a United Way partner program.
None of us know when or if we’ll need the services of a United Way program. However, a tragedy can strike at any time. United Way supports programs that could help you, your family, your friends or co-workers. Our entire community benefits when a child succeeds in school, when families have good health and are financially stable.
- Why do I see "United Way partner programs" doing their own fundraising?
Technically, United Way of Inner Wisconsin does not fund “agencies,” we fund their programs. Your United Way can ensure that donors’ gifts are going directly to important services that help people in specific service areas. Most agencies depend on United Way funded dollars as a critical part of their overall budget. United Way can increase the credibility of agencies, making it easier for them to win foundation, state and federal grants.
- What is payroll deduction?
Payroll deduction is an easy way to maximize your contribution through United Way. You decide how much you want to donate each pay period from your paycheck. Your company then deducts that amount and sends it to United Way.
- Why should my company run an employee workplace campaign?
When a company supports United Way through an employee workplace campaign it enhances your company’s image and, most importantly, it links your employees with services in their community. Successful workplace campaigns are fun events that boost employee morale and support team-building. They leave donors feeling good about themselves and happy that their company provided them with the opportunity to give something back to the community.
- Does your United Way use heavy-handed tactics to raise money?
United Way strongly believes that whether to give, how much to give, and who to give to, are personal decisions for each and every individual. United Way volunteers and staff only want to explain the benefit of the services that we provide, and let people decide for themselves. When we come to your company, we consider it a privilege and honor to be a guest in your place of business. United Way provides many options for how and where to direct the money of those who choose to give.
- I have been told NOT to give to United Way
Again, whether or not you donate to United Way (or ANY organization) is a personal choice that only you can make. You need to follow your heart and do what you believe is right. United Way provides funding and support to vital programs here in our community. Supporting only one program or agency does not solve local issues. It’s when we work together that our communities improve.
- Are United Way funds distributed evenly among agencies?
No. Annually, the Review Panels and Community Impact Committee review funding requests, visit agencies and evaluate the finances of each agency. They then make recommendations based on the needs of the community being addressed by each program.
- Are United Way contributions tax-deductible?
Yes, if you itemize your deductions on your federal income tax return. Keep a copy of your pledge form and thank you letter from United Way of Inner Wisconsin to validate your donation.
- I know someone who asked for help from United Way and didn't get it. Why? Most problems that people encounter can be addressed by our local agencies. People who call us for help are connected to our Information & Referral Service “United Way's 2-1-1." We are the best source of information on where and how to get help. We maintain information on all human services in our communities. However, sometimes people ask for services that do not exist. Often that is because of inadequate funding. When there is a limited amount of money to go around, we need to make sure that core services are funded first. Sometimes that means some needs go unmet. In most situations, help is available.
- Does the United Way of Inner Wisconsin fund Planned Parenthood? No, the United Way of Inner Wisconsin has never allocated funds to any Planned Parenthood clinic.