United Way kicks off 2017 campaign

9/11 kickoff reveals new fundraising goal

Last year – thanks to you – we surpassed our community campaign goal of $3 million. This year, we have upped it by 2.5 percent. The new goal of $3,075,000 was announced at our 2017 Community Campaign Kickoff on Sept. 11. We’re pretty excited about this goal! The funds we raise during this campaign will help us in turn provide funding for the programs and services of more than 30 partner agencies in the year to come!
The Sept. 11 kickoff, held at the Columns Club of Faurot Field at Memorial Stadium, was festive and exciting while also commemorating the significance of the day. We were pleased to welcome around 300 community members, many donning red Live United t-shirts.
To start the event, the Columbia Fire Dept. presented the colors before United Way Executive Director Andrew led the room in the Pledge of Allegiance. A moment of silence immediately followed, and then Andrew thanked the firefighters on behalf of all who have and continue to serve.
We were also excited to welcome several speakers, including University of Missouri President Mun Choi and Chancellor Alexander Cartwright; 2017 Community Campaign Chairs Bev & Allen Curtis; and Marcus Reynolds, executive director of United Way partner agency Turning Point. This year’s campaign theme of United We Fight, United We Win resounded in each speaker’s remarks, with a call to fight for those in need and make our community stronger through giving, advocating and volunteering.
The event wrapped up with a Columbia Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting and a rousing rock, paper, scissors match between Coach Robin Pingeton and Dr. Choi to promote our upcoming Rock, Paper, Scissors Tournament on Friday, Oct. 13. With high-drama color commentary, Gary Link officiated the game, ultimately announcing Dr. Choi as the winner. The intense but goofy match revved up the audience, which included volunteers heading out to participate in our annual Day of Caring, which you can read about here.  
Be sure to watch our 2017 Community Campaign video above, which was produced by University of Missouri student Kaylyn Sneathen as part of her capstone project. We are grateful for her time and talent!
See more about the 2017 Community Campaign Kickoff:
Click here to see KOMU's coverage of the day's events
Click here to see the Missourian's photo gallery


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