Westby Creamery News

Employees Donate Over $6,500 to United Way

Employees Donate Over $6,500 to United Way
Jan 08, 2024 (Westby, WI)

This year Westby Cooperative Creamery employees pledged to donate $6,592 to the Great Rivers United Way as part of its ongoing mission to support the community’s economic, social and environmental life. This is the Creamery’s highest pledge yet since the partnership began in 2015. The previous record of dollars donated in a single year was $6,362 back in 2017.

Over the last nine years, Westby Cooperative Creamery has donated over $45,000. These dollars represent the cumulative donation of dozens of employees and the Creamery itself.

Each year employees are given the opportunity to donate a portion of their paycheck via a payroll deduction. They can gift a one-time deduction or can elect to have dollars taken from each paycheck. This simple election makes it very easy for employees to share resources with the United Way, which serves a seven-county region of Wisconsin and Minnesota that includes La Crosse, Vernon, Crawford, Monroe, Buffalo, Trempealeau and Houston Counties.

The partnership began when Ellen Olson, Westby Creamery’s human resources manager, joined the team. Olson was familiar with Great Rivers United Way from a previous employer and believed its mission and geographic coverage area aligned well with the Creamery. She presented the idea to the Creamery’s board of directors, who met with representatives from the United Way. “We felt it was important, not just from the employee side, but from our farmer-owner side as well,” Olson said. “Our farmer-owners live in all those counties.”

Great Rivers United Way supports more than 26 certified agencies and 52 programs by providing grants for projects that focus on education, income, health and community basics, such as food, shelter and safety. Each year over 100 United Way volunteers review the grant requests and select recipients. This ensures that every dollar donated addresses community needs and delivers measurable, lasting results.

Donating has an added element of fun for the staff who, if they donated $52 or more, receive a United Way/Westby Creamery t-shirt and are entered into two gift card drawings. Plus, Westby Creamery also contributes $1,000 to the campaign.

This partnership assures dollars are going to vetted programs that serve multiple community needs and continues Westby Creamery’s mission of supporting the community. To learn more about Great Rivers United Way visit www.gruw.org.

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