ST. CLOUD - United Way is celebrating 50 years of helping make Central Minnesota a better place to live.

The beginning's of United Way in our area started as a resource for local non-profits to raise money. Over time the needs of the community have changed. Finding volunteers for the non-profits and becoming a resource for area youth are other major needs United Way is helping fill.

Jessica Johnson is the Director of Marketing and Communications for United Way in Central Minnesota says United Way was started 50 years ago to help a growing need in Central Minnesota.

"When we started in 1967 we had a group of people that came together and said how can we fund raise for all these local non-profits. How can we help them with their fund raising efforts so that donors don't get asked by all these different non-profits."

 

The Boys and Girls Club in Central Minnesota is one of the recipients of United Ways continuous efforts.

Tom Wicks is the Director of Programs for the Boys and Girls Club of Central Minnesota. He says they owe a lot of their sustained success to United Way.

"United Way way is the greatest supporter we have in our community. They are providing in a lot of different ways to support the programs that the Boys and Girls Club offers. In addition to financially they are supporting a lot of other community needs like feeding the hungry and quality out of school time,"

 

The five greatest areas of need United Way is currently focused in Central Minnesota are early learning, quality out of school time, access to food, homelessness, and financial stability.

The 50 year celebration took place at Lake George and featured games, food and live entertainment.

If you are interested in learning more about United Way of Central Minnesota or want to know how you can help follow the link below.