Donations to charities drop

By Lesley Rogers

Times are hard for everyone this year, including the DeKalb United Way and other community agencies.

JoAnn Bergren, coordinator of State Employee and Universities Combine Appeal (SECA), said overall donations to various charities in the SECA campaign are falling.

“SECA is the state’s umbrella name for all of the charities it allows to solicit money from state employees,” Bergren said.

Through SECA, NIU faculty and staff can contribute money to help support United Way and other organizations, such as Illinois Women’s Funding, the United Negro College Fund and Special Olympics.

“Two new charities were available this year and although they did fairly well, they do not account for the losses in other areas,” Bergren said.

Donations to the DeKalb United Way fell from $34,761.70 in 1991 to $26,738.58 in 1992. This may be due to the problems caused last year when the director of the national United Way was caught using public funding for personal use, Bergren said.

However, the general public can be assured that the money contributed to DeKalb United Way will be used to benefit the community.

Eileen Bosic, director of the DeKalb United Way, said most of the money raised stays locally in DeKalb. “The money will fund 22 agencies in DeKalb. It is important to raise money to fund our member agencies.”

The DeKalb United Way helps fund organizations such as the Children’s Learning Center, DeKalb Youth Service, Hope Haven, Salvation Army and the Volunteer Action Center.

In March, the DeKalb United Way will vote to determine if they need to cut funding on any of their member agencies, Bosic said.

Any NIU faculty member, staff or student can donate to the DeKalb or Sycamore United Way campaigns by check. Send contributions to Begren or SECA Co-chairman Bob Snow, who will see that the appropriate agency gets the contribution.

“It’s important to note that neither of these organizations have met their goal and NIU’s contributions are down significantly,” Bergren said.

Staff and students who are short on cash but wish to help can contact the United Way or one of its member organizations, Bosic said.

“Most agencies are always looking for volunteers to help,” she said. “Time is just as important as money.”