Frequently Asked Questions

These are some of the most commonly-asked questions about the United Way of Williams County.  To see an answer, just click on a question.  If your question is not answered here, check the Agency Partner FAQCampaign FAQ or email us.

What does United Way of Williams County do?

United Way of Williams County is a locally-based, volunteer-driven nonprofit organization dedicated to funding quality human care services and programs that meet county residents’ basic needs and improve community conditions.

United Way focuses on improving our community’s quality of life. Its strength comes from working together with local businesses, government, and nonprofits, making a greater difference than any one organization or person can when working alone.

How is United Way of Williams County different from other United Ways?

The United Way system includes more than 1,300 community-based United Way organizations in the United States and around the world. Each is independent, separately incorporated and governed by a local, volunteer Board of Directors.

Because of the unique conditions in diverse communities, the issues United Ways address are determined locally. United Way of Williams County is unique in that it is dedicated to addressing the most pressing community needs and issues facing all areas of Williams County (Alvordton, Blakeslee, Bryan, Edgerton, Edon, Holiday City, Kunkle, Montpelier, Pioneer, Stryker, and West Unity).

Is United Way of Williams County audited?

Yes, each year an independent CPA firm audits the books and provides an audit and management letter to United Way’s Board of Directors. Independent auditors also audit funded agencies.

Our audit is available online under the “About Us” tab –> “Accountability” section.

How big is the United Way staff and what do they do?

There are two part-time persons at United Way of Williams County. The staff is responsible for the coordination of volunteers who work to fulfill United Way’s mission.

Supporting the work of volunteers, United Way staff:

  1. Secure the necessary resources, including more than $300,000 annually, to support needed community programs and services that meet residents basic needs and address pressing community issues.
  2. Coordinate United Way’s efforts tackling chronic community problems, like Financial Stability.
  3. Participate in various community collaborations aimed at addressing critical community needs and improving the provision of health and human services.
What makes United Way of Williams County unique among charities?

Your United Way is an important funding source and community builder. United Way is a local community-managed, non-profit organization. Volunteer committees oversee all major functions of the organization and a small professional staff administers the day-to-day operations.

United Way is dedicated to effectively investing the community’s financial and human resources to make a better community for us all.

United Way raises funds and invests them in health and human service programs in 27 local agencies. United Way works with local volunteers, community agencies, and others to find solutions to our community’s most pressing problems.

Who benefits from United Way?

People in need–your family, friends, neighbors and you. Your local United Way is supported by and helps provide health and human services to everyone who works or lives in Williams County. People who live and/or work in Williams County may access services through the programs and agencies United Way supports. Last year United Way of Williams County, through its member agencies, provided 63,766 units of service within our county.

What is United Way of Williams County’s relationship with United Way Worldwide?

United Way Worldwide is the organization dedicated to leading the United Way movement in making a measurable impact in each community. United Way of Williams County pays dues of less than one penny of every dollar contributed, or less than 1% of money raised.

Some of the services provided by United Way Worldwide to your local United Way include: training credits, affiliations with the National Football League, advertising, materials discounts, market reports, fund raising reports and data, access to national organizations with coordinated fund raising, staff and volunteer training programs, group purchasing discounts, networking opportunities and national lobbying efforts.

The value of benefits received from United Way Worldwide is always far more than is paid in dues and helps keep our local costs down.

You all have the same logo! Aren’t all United Ways the same?

NO. Though United Ways share a logo and have similar missions, each United Way is independently incorporated and is led by local staff and volunteers. The work of each United Way is determined by its community needs.

Is my United Way a local or national organization?

Each United Way organization is completely autonomous; locally governed, organized and operated.

Who governs the United Way of Williams County?

A volunteer board of trustees governs United Way of Williams County. It is made up people who live and/or work within our county. This board is independent and makes policy and funding decisions for our United Way. You can view a listing of board members on our web site.

Who decides where my money goes?

Each year local volunteers evaluate each agency that applies for United Way funding. Each agency must be recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) health and human service nonprofit organization, be governed by a volunteer board of directors, be audited annually by a CPA firm, annually present and defend their entire budget to the volunteers, and operate at a reasonable cost

Everyone needs help in an emergency. Do United Way partners provide any service of this kind?

Yes. United Way financially supports programs providing numerous emergency services. These services include help with food, shelter, clothing, utilities, medical needs, victim support, crisis counseling and financial assistance. Individuals can also access a database of more than 5,000 programs through referrals given by 2-1-1. Additionally, United Way convenes the local board of the Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) and determines the distribution of these federal funds to local nonprofit organizations to supplement emergency food and shelter programs.

How has the national United Way resolved its financial problems from several years ago?

In February, 1992, a Washington Post article outlined lax management and lavish spending by United Way of America President William Aramony. Intense pressure from local United Ways prompted Aramony’s retirement announcement less than two weeks later. Mr. Aramony and several other former United Way of America senior managers have since been convicted of mismanagement and misuse of United Way of America’s funds, and served time in jail. A new president, new financial control systems, six new oversight committees and an expansion of the number of representatives of local United Ways at the board and committee level have corrected the problems.

It is important to note that no local dollars were lost or at risk during this time.

Does United Way spend my money on fancy dinners?

No. At United Way special events and meetings, corporations and/or individuals are asked to pay for the cost of attending.