Since 2012, United Way of Southern West Virginia has been proud to organize Dancing with the Stars each September. Dozens of community members have given their blood, sweat, and tears to months of dance practice and fundraising events. Dancers become ambassadors for the United Way, taking our message forth and widening the spread of information about our impact. The United Way directors, staff, and volunteers have created an exciting, elegant event and our dancers have provided world class entertainment, raising record-setting funds.

Unfortunately, like many nonprofit organizations, United Way has had to cancel some of its fundraisers, including Dancing with the Stars. Dancers who had committed to this year’s event have kindly agreed to extend their commitment to 2021. We are hopeful that by this time next year we can come together to enjoy another outstanding United Way event and raise the funds so desperately needed in our community.

Though large-scale fundraisers have been postponed, the needs have not abated. In many cases, the pandemic has exacerbated those needs. Residents of southern West Virginia receive incredible support and assistance from the services provided by United Way and our partner agencies. Food pantries, senior services, child advocacy centers, domestic violence aid and awareness, and many other local programs are vital resources at all times and have seen a significant increase in the demand for their services recently.

United Way is known as our community’s “resource of resources” because we are a clearinghouse for information and opportunities to achieve quality of life through health, education, and financial stability. Our 211 Information and Referral Hotline is a wonderful example of the connections made through United Way. Over the past six months, our referral specialist, through our confidential hotline. has made referrals for thousands of callers to programs which assist with basic needs, health resources, children’s and seniors’ services, recovery programs, and employment information.

Reaching our yearly fundraising goal helps us provide direct services like WV211 as well as essential support to our partner agencies. Though we may not be hosting large-scale events like Dancing with the Stars this year, we continue to reach out through workplace campaigns and opportunities like our golf scramble at Woodhaven Golf Course, the Safe and Swingin’ Social at 1 p.m. on Sept. 25. Registration is open at unitedwayswv.org/golf, though slots are limited. Registration is $125 for a round of golf in the beautiful fall mountains of West Virginia. Food, drinks, music, and auction items will be available during our social in the cart barn at 5:30. Join us for a safe and swingin’ afternoon in support of United Way.

As we always have, United Way of Southern West Virginia will move forward together with our community, making connections and creating opportunities for impact. Please consider making a pledge securely online at unitedwayswv.org or by calling 304-253-2111 or mailing a contribution to United Way of Southern West Virginia, PO Box 5456, Beckley, WV 25801. Join us by living, giving, and leading UNITED!

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