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Community Chest supports Madison County neighbors

The United Community Chest of Cazenovia, Fenner and Nelson awarded over $33,000 to 12 non-profit organizations in 2011, including Project Cafe, Cazenovia Children’s House, and the Retired Senior Volunteer Program.

Founded in 1957 by area civic leaders, the Community Chest raises funds through a fall community-wide annual appeal to support local charities providing services to residents of the region.

Last year, approximately 250 local donors participated.

In Madison County alone, there are over 130 charitable organizations supporting people, places and animals in one city, 15 towns and 10 villages.

With a continued weak economy, non-profit agencies are coping with deeper cuts in local and state funding, while demand for services is expected to increase at organizations such as Caz Cares, who already sees an average of 150 clients per month for food and clothing.

The full list of Community Chest grant recipients for the past year includes: American Red Cross, CazCares, Cazenovia Children’s House, Cazenovia Community Preschool, Community Action Partnership for Madison County, Heritage Farms, Madison County Children’s Camp, Madison County Office for the Aging, Project Café, RSVP, Wanderers’ Rest and Arise at the Farm.

For those interested in making a charitable donation to support local concerns, participating in the annual fund drive of the United Community Chest makes good business sense.

“Our seven-member board has a longstanding relationship with local charitable organizations which have a strong track record for doing good work,” said United Community Chest President Phil Willard. “They keep us abreast of the region’s most pressing needs, and by pooling donor dollars, we can all make a greater impact on our neighbors and the community as a whole.”

The only expenses for the United Community Chest are printing and postage for the annual appeal — due out in early November 2011, and insurance.

To receive funds, local organizations complete a grant application which the board uses to evaluate competing funding requests and to determine overall annual expenditures.

Over the past five years, the Community Chest has distributed an average of $42,000 annually.

To direct contributions to the United Community Chest of Cazenovia, Fenner and Nelson, mail your tax deductible donation to P.O. Box 73, Cazenovia, NY 13035.

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