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Paynesville Press - Oct. 2, 2002

Paynesville Area Charity Fund begins its 2002 drive

By Bonnie Jo Hanson

Three new local organizations were added as charities for the Paynesville Area Charity Fund Drive this year.

The charity fund kicked off its tenth annual drive on Tuesday, Oct. 1, with a mass mailing of letters.

Residents can indicate on the drive's form which of the 18 local and 13 state and national charities they want their donations to go to, mail it back with a check or money order by Tuesday, Dec. 31, and the volunteer staff will send the appropriate amounts to each charity.

Money can be designated for one charity or divided up among two or more charities. Donations can be put into a general fund, and the committee will decide where it goes - based on percentages from other donations. There is even a space to designate a charity that isn't on the list.

Donations are tax-deductible. Canceled checks or money order receipts should be kept, as they act as receipts for tax purposes. Receipts will be sent to donors for donations over $250.

New on the list this year is the Student Memorial Scholarship Fund, a scholarship that will be set up to honor all the students at Paynesville Area Schools who died before their graduations.

Also new are the Lake Koronis Recreational Trail, a pedestrian trail that could eventually link the city of Paynesville with Lake Koronis, and the Keep the Quality Education Foundation, a new foundation dedicated to helping the local school district.

The committee has set a goal of $40,000 again this year. Last year's drive raised $40,500 and exceeded the goal by $500.

According to Phyllis Gardner, secretary for the board of directors of the Paynesville Area Fund Drive, the drive makes it easy for residents to give to their favorite organizations. The volunteers do all of the legwork, they divvy up the donations, and they send it to the appropriate charities.

One big advantage to giving in this manner, she said, is all the follow-up mail and solicitations from the charities are directed to the charity fund, not to individual donors.

Employees of the Paynesville Area Health Care System and Paynesville Area Schools have the option of having donations automatically withheld from their paychecks and sent to the charity fund by their employers.

The board of directors for the Paynesville Area Charity Fund are: Robert Bowden, Gardner, Clint Hoiseth, Armon Kaehler, Bev Mueller, Faye and Jim Paster, Dan Severance, Joe Spaulding, Jay Thompson, Don Torbenson, Steve Whitcomb, and Jan Zumwalde.

For more information, call Gardner at 320-243-7793.

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