Over the hills and through the woods...to Erie we go!

During our travels to Erie, Pennsylvania last week, we met with United Way of Erie County. While we were there, we stopped in the local grocery store and were impressed by the store. We had never been in a Wegmans before, and we really liked it! It turns out customers aren’t the only ones who are satisfied – Wegmans ranks #4 on the list of Fortune Magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work For.

We were also impressed by this sign and other similar signs posted throughout the grocery store:

As soon as we walked in, we were greeted by this sign, which not only presents an ISSUE (hunger), but also presents STATISTICS ($3 donation feeds a family of 4 for 1 day) and TRUST AND ACCOUNTABILITY (100% of your donation supports our local food bank). It also tells you when and where to donate. As you are standing in line getting ready to check out, there are signs posted up, reminding you of the issue and how you can make an impact in the local community. We were very impressed and had to take a picture of the sign to share with all of you.

Does your United Way post similar signs throughout your community, telling community members about the ISSUE you are taking the lead on addressing in your community, STATISTICS about how their contribution will make an impact, and TRUST AND ACCOUNTABILITY about where their donation is going? If not, we would encourage you to do so!

Community members are more likely to contribute to your United Way if they are aware of the issue you are addressing and they are presented with facts about how their contribution will make an impact in the community. Don’t just communicate what areas you cover or tell them how much money is being raised, but make an effort to communicate the issues you are addressing and the impact it is having in your community.

Perhaps your local store could do something similar for your United Way. Good luck! We hope to see your United Way’s example out in the community during our future travels…