United Way

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COLUMBIA - Heart of Missouri United Way is holding its campaign kickoff and day of caring Monday. Organizers will announce their fundraising goal for this year, which will be more than $3 million after surpassing that goal last year. 

This year, United Way aligned its day of caring with 9/11. While the event is normally held in the Spring, Executive Director Andrew Garbau said this will engage our community in doing something honorable to remember that day.

"The day of caring is a community wide movement," Garbau said. "We've been doing it for a number of years. It's focused on making sure our community can take time off of work, take time out of their busy days, and to really see how they can help those in our community that either deliver services or that need help in our community."

United Way will start the kickoff with a moment of silence for all those fallen on 9-11 and a procession of flags by the Columbia Fire Department. 

"Then we're really going to turn to what the kickoff is all about," Garbau said, " and that is getting our community ready to commit, once again, to financially supporting United Way so that we can provide essential services and programs under our agency to our community."

The day of caring has more than 200 volunteers that coordinate with 22 businesses to help do projects around Columbia.

"The day of caring and our kickoff is really a community wide call to action," Garbau said, "It's a call to give, a call to volunteer, and it's a call to advocate. Because we know that as a community, if we do those three things, then we can help everyone in our community so that Columbia is the community we really want it to be."

United Way's next event is a rock, papers, scissors tournament on October 13th.