Jan. 14, 2003 The board of directors of the United Way of St. Thomas-St. John is urging residents and businesses in the St. Thomas-St. John district to support the ongoing fundraising campaign, which must raise nearly $297,000 over the next few weeks in order to make the 2003 goal of $650,000.
The United Way of St. Thomas-St. John provides financial support to member human services agencies serving the two islands. If the United Way is unable to meet its goal, the agencies will suffer cutbacks in their allocations during 2003. A reduction in operating revenue could cause many agencies to reduce or eliminate needed charitable programs serving community residents.
Campaign chair Steve Jones appealed to the community to not let that happen. "I urge everyone to find the means to contribute to the United Way. Were not asking for a lot from each person. But please consider that just one or two dollars a week can make the difference in keeping these agencies operating for the benefit of every one of us. As a community, it is our responsibility to help those less fortunate, and the United Way is the best way to do just that."
Jones praised those individuals and businesses that have contributed to the campaign so far. He stated, "There are those among us who do understand the importance of giving to the United Way. For example, the 25 employees of The Sea Chest contributed a total of $4,872 to the 2003 campaign, nearly $200 per person on the average. This is an amazing effort and I urge others to consider giving something, anything they can afford, to the United Way."
He added that this can easily be done by delivering or mailing in a pledge to the United Way, Nisky Center, Suite 220, St. Thomas, V.I. 00802.
In support of the 2003 campaign, the agency has scheduled two fund-raising special events:
The annual Walk-Fun-Run will take place at 4:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 26, on the Waterfront. The race will cover a two-mile course, starting at the Coast Guard Dock, continuing through Frenchtown and then returning to the Dock. Awards will be given to the top finishers in four categories: adults, youth aged 15 and under, the youngest participant and the oldest participant. Special corporate and government awards will be given to organizations with the most employee entrants.
Advance registration fees are $7 for adults and $5 for youths. On-site registration will be $10 for both categories. Registration forms are available from the United Way office in Nisky Center, Players at Havensight Mall, Going Seanile in Royal Dane Mall, and , only on Jan. 25 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Emancipation Garden Post Office.
The annual Flea Market will be held at a new location this year: the American Legion Hall in Sub Base. It's set for 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 22. A local favorite, this special event features the sale of previously-owned household goods, toys, books, furniture, appliances, clothing and accessories at fabulously low prices.
The United Ways member agencies will also be on hand to sell local food and drinks, plants, books and pre-owned merchandise, as well as explain their service programs.
The value of items donated to the United Way for the Flea Market is tax deductible. To donate goods to the Flea Market or to volunteer to assist with the event, contact executive director Thyra Hammond at 774-3185.
The United Way's member agencies currently include: American Red Cross, V.I. Council of the Boy Scouts of America, Carabana Ensemble Theatre Company, Catholic Charities of the Virgin Islands, Civil Air Patrol, Dial-A-Ride St. Thomas, Dial-A-Ride St. John, Downstreet People's Youth in Action, Ebenezer Gardens, Friends of Volunteers in Public Schools, Girl Scout Council of the Virgin Islands, Legal Services of the Virgin Islands, Shaky Acres, V.I. Institute for Teaching and Learning, Fair Havens Summer Camp, Lutheran Reformation Summer Program, and St. Thomas Reformed Church Summer Program.
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