Competition for a good cause

‘Minute To Win It’ game is used to raise money for the United Way campaign


Photo by Dana Summers

A pamphlet given to Millard West by United Way describes what the money that we raised has gone towards.

Dana Summers, Staff Reporter

On the 4th, 21st and 24th of October, students could be seen racing down the halls of Millard West as a fundraising event was hosted to accumulate money for the annual United Way campaign.

United Way of the Midlands is a non-profit organization that collects money from all over the community and distributes it to places and people in need. Each year, all of the Millard Public schools join together to raise money for this cause.

“We like how the program supports those that are in most desperate need in our community,” Principal Greg Tiemann said. “In Millard, we have many students that are less fortunate for basic survival needs. We’ve learned as professionals how trauma can impact student learning, so these organizations are such a valuable partner.”

The Key Club has been in charge of organizing this fundraiser for the past five years. They have previously put on Quality Time competitions, dodgeball tournaments and tried out a new ‘Minute To Win It’ competition last year.

“We actually got this idea from Millard North,” Key Club sponsor Heather Baker said. “The year that we hosted the dodgeball tournament, Millard North came up with the ‘Minute To Win It’ idea. We decided to try out this competition the following year because they had a lot of success and it seemed easy in terms of upfront planning.”

The ‘Minute To Win It’ competition consisted of three randomly selected dates where an announcement was made over the intercom with instructions. A song was played over the loudspeakers and students began collecting as much money as possible. Each class sent a student to run their donated money down to the administration office before the song ended. The top three classes who collected the most money were then rewarded with free food.

This year’s first place winner was teacher Alyssa Watson’s fourth block raising $143.50, followed in second place by her first block class who raised $48.71.

“I think I get students to donate by explaining what a good organization the United Way of the Midlands is,” Watson said. “I personally respect how they donate almost 90 cents of every dollar of their funds to local necessities. Some organizations only donate half or less of their donations because the rest is used to cover overhead and administrative costs. I also get super enthused and prep the kids to start bringing in money over the course of several days to increase the amount of our donation.”

As for third place, the official winner was teacher Chris Ingram’s fourth block that raised $48. However, there was a previous mix up declaring Alex Jameson’s fourth block as winners, so both classes will be receiving prizes.

Photo by Dana Summers

The total money raised by the student population this year was $902.84. This was the second highest amount that the school has raised, following last year’s approximate total of $1200.

Due to the flooding in parts of Neb. earlier this spring, United Way donated all of the money raised this year to the Nebraska and Iowa Flood Relief Fund. Millard West’s donations contributed to the $1.1 million given in support of immediate crisis response and flood recovery efforts.

Thus far, partnering with United Way has given many students the opportunity to help out the community, and the Key Club plans to continue this collaboration moving forward.