MIAMI COUNTY — On Thursday, the one-year-old United Way of Miami County celebrated their inaugural year at their new home office in Troy.
The new central location is at 116 W. Franklin St., Troy, the former location of Partners in Hope. The United Way of Miami County serves 42 agencies across the entire county. The Troy, Tipp City and Piqua United Ways merged to form one county-wide agency in July 2018.
CEO Sean Ford said the new office space combines the three cities’ United Way branches and had been a goal of the year-old county organization.
“We wanted to have a county-wide ribbon cutting to show that we are here to serve the entire county and we’re not seeing city boundaries, we are seeing the county in general and trying to serve as many people as possible,” Ford said.
Chairman Lisa McGraw said, “It had been kicked around for years and it never took root. There were some circumstances that afforded an exploration. People from each community came together and figured out a way to get it done. It makes sense. We are opening ourselves up to the entire county in need. After one year, we noticed how these programs are going to grow. It’s a win-win for sure.”
McGraw said the merger eliminated administrative costs and duplication of those costs to allow more money to go back out to the agencies.
“And by being county-wide, we open ourselves to all the residents in our county as opposed to just the Piqua area, the Tipp area or the Troy area,” she said.
The merger also helped agencies who serviced the county by allowing them to apply once for grants and funds instead of three times.
A new county service to connect those in need will be rolled out in 2020. The United Way of Miami County plans to launch the 2-1-1 service, which can help connect residents to services such as child care or help with aging adults and other community services. Miami County Commissioner Greg Simmons said it was an honor for the county to show its support of the 2-1-1 service. The county donated $50,000 to the organization to launch the service this spring.
Both Troy Mayor Michael Beamish and Piqua Mayor Kazy Hinds gave their support on behalf of their cities.
Beamish, who has been part of many agency boards, said the combination of city agencies demonstrates “teamwork and pride” when everyone works together.
“There are so many needs that our citizens have and it’s wonderful that we have all these organizations that the United Way is able to help fund and support so we get our citizens the help they need,” Hinds said.
Tipp City Mayor Joe Gibson was unable to attend due to a scheduling conflict.
McGraw encouraged those who haven’t donated yet this year, to do so to help reach this year’s goal of $1.65 million. CEO Sean Ford said they have reached more than 60 percent of that goal with a final push to close the year.
To donate or to learn more about the United Way of Miami County, visit www.unitedwaymco.org or call (937) 335-8410.
Reach Melanie Yingst at firstname.lastname@example.org
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