Dec. 29, 2016

A successful fund-raising campaign by generous team members of Duncan Regional Hospital has pushed the United Way of Stephens County campaign past the $200,000 plateau.

Individuals at the hospital donated $51,739.03 to its internal campaign. That’s 3.5 percent over its ambitious $50,000 goal.

“We’re really proud of our team members,” Caleb Payne, Director of Imaging at DRH and campaign chairman, grinned.

“Their commitment to a program so important to our community is impressive. And believe me, it was a total team effort

“It’s an example of service outside their professional work, of good people stepping up to meet an aggressive challenge and of people seeing and meeting a need while our community is hurting.”

Shelia Crissman, Coordinator of Team Member Services and a United Way veteran, echoed his thoughts.

“Exceeding our goal has become a tradition here,” she said, a touch of pride obvious in her words. ”We’ve been given some aggressive goals in recent years, but our team always comes together. They believe in the United Way and its mission is very much like that of Duncan Regional Hospital. We want to help people. And this is simply another avenue for that to happen.

“Our team members see the good United Way agencies share. They ask about each agency, each’s plans and challenges and they have a lot of respect for the quality of services that are provided. It’s the sort of message that makes giving easy

“We also recognize our role as a leader in the community and it is important to all of us to set a good example.”

An annual chili cook-off launched the hospital campaign Oct. 31 Campaign officials, team leaders and members encouraged participation and prize drawings throughout the campaign kept enthusiasm high.

“I can’t say enough at Duncan Regional Hospital,” Marty Askins, chairman of the United Way of Stephens County campaign, gushed. “Team members there have shown once again their concern for and interest in the communities we represent.

“They set a high standard for the rest of us. Their research in our agencies, their involvement as volunteers and their financial investment only serves to add to the credibility of the United Way. It is a partnership that has only grown stronger and we’re grateful for all they do as individuals and givers in our community.”

A slow economy, prompted by a prolonged downturn in the oil and energy industry, has created a United Way challenge as campaign leaders seek to raise $300,000 to support 14 partner agencies.

Those agencies are Christians Concerned, Delta Community Action Foundation, Douglass East Side Senior Citizens Center, Duncan Community Residence, Duncan Area Literacy Council, Duncan Senior Citizens Center, Gabriel’s House Academy, Heartline 2-1-1, Girl Scouts of Western Oklahoma, Legal Aid of Oklahoma, Marlow Samaritans, Women’s Haven and Youth Services for Stephens County.

Contributions can be mailed to the United Way of Stephens County, P.O. Box 1632, Duncan, OK 73534 or dropped off at the United Way office, 12 South 8th Street, Suite 9, Duncan. For additional information, contact executive director Ed Darling at (580) 255-3648