United Way earns evaluator award
by Special to the Banner
Sep 18, 2013 | 899 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
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Charity Navigator, an independent charity evaluator that evaluates the financial health, accountability and transparency of approximately 6,000 of America's largest charities, has bestowed one of the top ratings possible for United Way of Bradley County Inc.

The respected local organization received four stars out of a possible four, one of only three in the state to receive that designation and one of the top point ratings in the country. According to Charity Navigator records, United Way of Bradley County received an overall point rating of 64.70, the highest in Tennessee.

“We know what a great job our United Way does, but when an organization like Charity Navigator gives us such high marks, it just reinforces that we are doing things right,” said Matt Ryerson, United Way of Bradley County president and CEO. “Of course, this is an honor that is given to United Way, but is only possible through the great community support we receive, as well as the outstanding partnerships we have developed locally.”

That includes, Ryerson said, the many campaign partners that receive funding from United Way each year, as well as those that receive grants from the Bradley County Health Endowment Fund.

One of the highlights of the Charity Navigator report is that United Way of Bradley County’s fundraising expenses are only 5.3 percent of budget. With the exception of a small percentage going toward United Way Worldwide for use of the United Way logo, other materials and educational training, these fundraising expenses stay in the United Way of Bradley County service area.

“Thus, the only money that is not either distributed to our partner agencies or spent on campaign materials locally, relates to about 1 percent of budget, or 1 cent out of every dollar contributed,” Ryerson said. “Ninety-nine (99) cents out of every $1 pledged to United Way stays here, and helps here.”

The Charity Navigator profile for United Way of Bradley County also states that for every 5 cents spent on fundraising, $1 in contributions is raised.

“We are pleased to be ranked so high by Charity Navigator, and I believe it shows that we are doing what our community expects and deserves — as much of the contributed funds go to worthy causes in our area,” Ryerson said.

He added, “It is truly a reflection on our volunteers, particularly of the board of directors, who are committed to ensuring that the infrastructure of our organization meets best practices and that everything we do is done with excellence.”

For more information on United Way of Bradley County, visit the organization’s website at www.unitedwaybc.com.