The United Way of Van Wert County began in 1922 when a group of distinguished business leaders in Van Wert realized the need the community had and wanted to help those less fortunate than themselves. And so, the Community Clearing House was born.
The Community Clearing House was the name given to this group at the time that funded eight agencies in Van Wert. On October 17, 1922, 100 community leaders spent one well-organized day going from business to business asking them and their employees to make a contribution to help fund this new organization. As a result of that day, approximately $20,000 was raised.
Also in 1922, only the people living in Van Wert city were served by these eight agencies. Several years later it was decided to serve all of Van Wert County — people living in the city as well as the rural areas in the county.
Since 1922, there have been three names changes: from the Community Clearing House to the Community Chest, then to the United Fund, and, today, the organization known as the United Way of Van Wert County.
Today’s services and needs have expanded, as well as the amount needed to now fund the 25 local agencies.
– The Van Wert Independent