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United Way passes halfway point
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GAINESVILLE — United Way of Hall County is more than halfway to its annual campaign goal of $2.07 million.

On Wednesday, members of the community assembled at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Hall County for
refreshments and an update on the campaign, which kicked off in September.

As of Tuesday, United Way had raised $1,120,518.

"We are at 54 percent of our goal, and that is wonderful," said campaign chairwoman Roz Hudson.

Proceeds from the campaign help fund health and human resources organizations that serve Hall County residents.

Joe Ethier, chief professional officer of the Boys & Girls Clubs, is new to the area, but said he has already received a warm welcome.

"It’s so exciting coming to a community that’s so invested in their youth and so invested in making sure that their future is secure," he said.

Also Wednesday, Hudson announced the 10 companies who, to date, have contributed the most to the campaign: Georgia Power; BB&T; Conditioned Air Systems; United Community Bank; UPS; Hall County School System; Cargill; Regions; Northeast Georgia Health System and Publix.

In addition to those companies, Hudson recognized three companies who have started an employee campaign for United Way: PFG Milton; Jordan, James and Goulding; and Carroll Daniel Construction.

More than 80 companies in Hall County now have campaigns, Hudson said.

Hudson expects to have the final campaign totals announced by early 2008.

"There’s still a whole lot of work to be done," she said. "We’re about 13 miles from our 26-mile marathon, so it’s not time to stop yet. Grab a drink of water and keep going."

The community can help contribute further to the United Way campaign on Nov. 29, during a "Dine Out" event.

Hudson said to plan on having breakfast, lunch and dinner at one of 20 participating restaurants around town. The restaurants will donate a percentage of the day’s food sales to United Way.