Whether you’re a non-profit, community organization or even a social club – fundraising and donations are the backbone of your existence. They also allow achieve your long and short term mission and goals. But how do you keep growing? The United Way of Bemidji Area (Minnesota) has found a way to double their income over the last five years, so we sat down with Denae Alamano, Executive Director, to learn about their latest campaign and secret to their organization's success.

Our mission is to transform lives in our community by uniting people and organizations to maximize donor impact.Denae Alamano, Executive Director (United Way)

#LiveUnited Campaign

Each year the United Way of Bemidji Area devises a new annual Community Campaign to encourage local businesses, organizations and community members to come together and LIVE UNITED. This year's kickoff event took place on Wednesday, September 15th with a proclamation made by Bemidji Mayor, Jorge Prince, to begin their 2021 campaign and future campaigns. Now every 3rd Wednesday in September, Live United Day will take place in the Bemidji area!

While the Live United campaign does last through October 31, 2021, there are so many ways the community and businesses can participate. One easy way is donating through payroll deductions (which can be as little as $1 per paycheck). There are also several fundraising programs and events under the Community Campaign including: Senior Community Cleanup, Backpack Buddies, Coats for the Community, Restaurant Week, and Movie Days to name a few.

99% of what the U.W. raises stays in the Bemidji area. 1% goes to United Way Worldwide.

U.W. Bemidji Area supports 24 local non-profits and runs 8 programs.

27,621 community members receive the basic-needs (food, shelter, advocacy) care they need to survive. 

60,000+ local residents were impacted just in the last year alone through United Way Partner Agencies and programs. 

4,483 people received support through United Way community programs.

Creative Package Service

Sarah Hokuf—Founder and Managing Director here at Evolve—has been a board member for the United Way of Bemidji Area since January 2018. She serves on the marketing committee to give strategic advice and direction on brand awareness and creative ideas for campaigns. With Sarah's help, the United Way setup a Creative Package Service they can offer other Non-profits to help with their own branding and marketing. Not only does this help those organizations, but it can be another revenue stream for the United Way! Sarah has been happy to provide creative direction for all the wonderful ideas the marketing team at United Way has for each of their campaigns over the years.


Sarah Hokuf

UW'S Secret to Success

Strategic Planning

The United Way of Bemidji Area Board of Directors utilizes strategic planning to help evaluate past efforts and create new measurable goals and objectives for all programs and events that are housed within the annual Community Campaign.

Community Education

One of the way's United Way of Bemidji Area has doubled their income over the last 5 years is by displaying their services, programs and events as "sellable products." Constant community education of these products has been a huge asset to their success.

Creative Branding

The United Way of Bemidji Area's workplace toolkit was devised to help educate partnering businesses and support them in running a successful workplace campaign. This online kit includes email templates, social media tools, printable materials and more.

Local Partners

By becoming a United Way Partner Agency, local non-profits not only receive needed funds, but are also supported beyond the funding with capacity building, marketing, fundraising, and volunteer connections. This has also been an additional revenue stream for the United Way of Bemidji!


Creative Partner for Non-Profits

Our team has worked with a variety of non-profit organizations nation-wide and helped with their web development, branding and video needs. We can help devise the strategic framework and creative assets necessary to build your next successful campaign. Click here to set up a creative consultation!

Don't miss out on our tips!

Submit your email to receive the latest tips & tricks to help your business succeed!

Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.