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United Way makes push to goal





United Way of Ellis County is close to the finish line.

With a goal of raising $490,000 for this campaign, 98 percent of it has been reached, with $479,500 as of Thursday.

Now, it's getting those final contributions.

"We just sent around another round of letters," said campaign chairman Josh Dreher. "We're hoping that last round will make up that difference.

"I think last year we didn't reach our goal until February, but I think some of the larger donors were a little bit late turning in. In a perfect world, we'd like to have it wrapped up by the end of the year. We're still working every day to collect the remaining that's out there."

The campaign's slogan is "Rising Up to the Challenge." After a goal of raising $475,000 the last couple years, it was increased in 2013. In addition, two more agencies now receive funding, up to 16 in all. In 2012, thousands of people were served in Ellis County.

The letters that went out Tuesday were specifically targeted.

"Basically, this round of letters went to people that had donated last year, but either switched jobs or something happened to where they haven't sent us (contributions) this year yet," Dreher said. "People who have a history of donating are the ones you reach out to in a situation like this, because they have donated in the past."

As chairman, Dreher said he can't rest easy until the campaign goal is met.

"As soon as we hit the goal, it's going to be a relief," he said.