United Way decides to forgo specific dollar goal for 2009 campaign

The 2009 Kansas City area United Way campaign was launched this morning with a number, but not a dollar amount.

For the first time in its history, the United Way of Greater Kansas City is not setting out to raise a specific amount of money. Instead, the goal is to get 25,000 people to give who did not donate to United Way last year.

"This year, instead of setting an arbitrary campaign dollar goal in such an uncertain environment, United Way is challenging itself and the community to stretch in new directions — to be innovative and creative — to meet the needs of the community," campaign co-chair David Fowler said at the campaign kick-off breakfast this morning. "We will focus on getting more people and companies involved in supporting United Way."

Fowler said that only one in four working people give to United Way, even though United Way "touches nearly all of us in one way or another.

"We must do something to change that equation."

The United Way campaign will conclude on Nov. 17.