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Area residents stand United

Area residents stand United

Another successful fundraising campaign for the Porcupine United Way means hundreds of people will continue to receive valuable services through member agencies of the not-for-profit organization.

United Way wrapped up its most recent fundraising campaign at the Shania Twain Centre with an astounding announcement: It surpassed its initial goal of $400,500 by almost $45,000.

Every year, volunteers put out the call in search of much-needed dollars and the community answers in a big way.

Many businesses have gone to great lengths through payroll deductions to ensure the United Way is successful.

Hundreds of thousands of dollars are collected by our very supportive businesses, big and small alike, and that makes up a significant part of the campaign. But, it's the individuals in this community who help top up the coffers and they deserve every bit as much recognition as the businesses.

"To surpass our goal is a big achievement," said campaign co-chairman Mack Pettigrew. "We thought it was a long stretch to get to our goal. Everyone has been working hard since our kickoff in November.

"We've been approaching companies, individuals, organizations and everyone just kicks in together."

Every campaign is a struggle -- just ask any nonprofit organization and they are likely to tell you the same thing.

So many organizations vying for the same money, yet they all seem to come through in the end.

That's because it's the people of Timmins, no matter which organization your hard-earned money goes to, who truly make these campaigns the success they are.

The Porcupine United Way is an organization whose roots run deep within this community. There have been countless people who have taken on roles with its volunteer-based cabinet and they have all in their own way contributed to its success.

Even our own mayor, Tom Laughren, finds time in his busy schedule to get involved with the United Way.

"The goodness that it does in this community can't be overstated," Laughren said. "The agencies that it supports, the volunteers that support the United Way and the different events you run, our city would not be able to function without people like you."

Anyone who is familiar with the United Way has more than likely heard the name Fern Tremblay. Tremblay has been with the organization since Day 1 and continues to be a driving force behind its operation.

He was recognized for his dedication and hard work with the Volunteer of the Year award -- one he can add to all the other accolades he has received over the years.

"I'm grateful to whoever nominated me but I don't do it for the recognition," Tremblay said. "Even though I am recognized, it doesn't really give me the fulfillment I get when I serve the people. The award is good recognition and I accept it with a lot of gratitude."

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