‘Live United, Give United’

BY Bill Reagan

That was the message from outstanding members of the community, from San Benito Mayor Celeste Sanchez, to Jim and Wende Coffman of the Neighborhood Food Pantry, to two wonderful youngsters from the Harlingen Boys and Girls Club at the kickoff luncheon for the United Way of Northern Cameron County this past Tuesday.

A number of great community volunteers were recognized for their contributions to the United Way in the past twelve months.

The strength of our community is reflected in the work of our United Way. Local business leaders and representatives of some of the largest companies in the nation lend their support to this important organization.

Many people give to favorite projects, causes and charities. Gifts to the United Way ensure an equitable distribution to all our areas’ worthy charities.

Charities receiving United Way funds go through a rigorous vetting process. Financial reports must demonstrate fiscal responsibility and funding stability. Funded charities must show detailed plans of how the funds will be used, with measurable and achievable outcomes.

The United Way of Northern Cameron County’s Community Partners address a wide range of social needs, from hunger to health to education.

They include: The American Red Cross, The Boys and Girls Clubs of Harlingen and San Benito, Cameron County Children’s Advocacy Center, Family Crisis Center, Girl Scouts of Greater South Texas, Harlingen Area Educational Foundation, The Neighborhood Food Pantry, Loaves & Fishes, Rio Grande Valley Council Boy Scouts of America, The Salvation Army, The Westbrook Clinic – Valley Aids Council and The Harlingen Literacy Center.

The only truly unifying factor in any community is the commitment to service. That’s the value of the United Way. There’s a place for personal commitment to causes dear to one’s heart. There’s also a place for giving up personal agenda for common good, for Living United and Giving United.

Bill Reagan is executive director of Loaves & Fishes of the Rio Grande Valley.