There are many people who need your help
While indicators suggest the economy is perking up, indigent care providers aren't ready to celebrate. Their client rolls haven't dwindled. If anything, they're seeing more needy people.
And so, as the season of sharing gets under way, consider giving to Aloha United Way, the state's largest health and human services organization. AUW's network of 64 agencies provides $200 million in services through more than 300 community-based programs. Their goal in the 2003 fund-raising campaign is $13 million. The theme, "You're stronger than you think," symbolizes the profound impact that each contribution makes.
As a policy, AUW does more than just dole out money, but seeks ways for the needy to help themselves. One such example is the 211 hotline, a referral line that receives requests for everything from food and shelter to substance and domestic abuse treatment.
AUW officials lament that the bulk of 211 calls are from people who need food. There are some 300 food pantries in Hawai'i, though supplies are getting low.
Launched in July 2002, the 211 hotline received more than 47,000 calls in its first year. Right now, AUW is eager to see the passage of federal legislation that would expand 211 nationwide.
So make a donation, and if you're a service provider, get on the 211 list. For more information, go to www.auw.org.