Can a handful of coins make a difference to your community? According to our United Way of Anderson County 2017-2018 Campaign Co-Chair, Hans Vogel, they sure can.

“As I was checking out at Kroger recently, I noticed a couple of folks with their bags of coins waiting to have their change counted. As I walked by, I noticed the fee that was charged for this simple service: over 11% for the convenience of having a machine count your change. That means that for every dollar of change you put in the machine, you’ll get less than $0.89 (eighty nine cents) back!

I immediately thought about United Way and how often I’ve heard people criticize the administrative or overhead costs. What I now know is that United Way of Anderson County (UWAC) has a lower overhead fee than the coin machine, but it does so much more than just count change. Throughout the year, UWAC provides technical assistance and training to all non-profit organizations in Anderson County, and further provides collaboration opportunities for these agencies with local businesses, community leaders, volunteers, and residents throughout the county that focus on issues we read and hear about everyday.

UWAC also has a rigorous, formalized process to vet agency requests for financial support using experienced volunteer panels. This networking and funding review, along with the physical office lease cost and payroll for the small staff makes up the overhead of UWAC, and totals just 9.75% of the yearly budget, or less than $0.10 (ten cents) of your dollar you donate.

I haven’t always been a full supporter of United Way, as I have had similar concerns about the overhead costs of the organization. But I have learned so much more about our community, the needs of the non-profits that work to make it better, and how UWAC is providing support to these critical needs. I can assure you of the impact of your donation, and the ‘dime’ you give to UWAC does so much more than the fee you pay simply to have your change counted by a machine.”