United Way of Greater Portland sets $7.6M goal

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PORTLAND — United Way of Greater Portland’s annual fundraising campaign is underway, with a goal of $7.6 million.

Matt Hoidal, the ogranization’s vice president of resource development, said this year’s goal is a $300,000 increase over last year’s campaign. The money supports local agencies, programs, and initiatives in Cumberland County.

To help reach the goal, the John T. Gorman Foundation has established a matching grant of up to $250,000 for every new donor. It will also match the net increase by repeat donors who increase their giving.

“Establishing a matching grant for United Way of Greater Portland creates momentum for the 2015 campaign by prompting more people to give, and we are confident that it will also help to build better futures for thousands of people in our community,” Shawn Gorman, chairman of the John T. Gorman Foundation, said in a press release from United Way of Greater Portland.

Hoidal said while the organization believes this year’s goal is “very much attainable.” He said there were 14,000 donors in last year’s campaign.

“It’s a great example of how one person’s support alone, and combined with entire community, can make real and impactful difference,” Hoidal said.

United Way will help bring attention to the annual campaign with a rally in Monument Square on Tuesday, Sept. 8, at noon. Hoidal said the goal is to attract 1,000 people, who are also being urged to bring nonperishable canned or boxed goods for a food drive.

Hoidal said the goal of the food drive to create more than 13,800 meals.

Last year, he said, the United Way was able to serve more than 500,000 meals in the community because of the investments made in the annual campaign.

The 2015 Campaign Cabinet has 26 members, and is co-chaired by Larry Wold, state president of TD Bank, and Bill Caron, president of MaineHealth.

Colin Ellis can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 123 or cellis@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @colinoellis.

The United Way of Greater Portland has kicked off its annual fundraising campaign, with a goal of raising $7.6 million.

Reporter covering the Portland Public School District as well as the town of Falmouth for The Forecaster. Can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 123 or cellis@theforecaster.net.