The United Way of Union County is set to distribute almost three-quarters of a million dollars to local programs and social service agencies as a result of its 2013 fundraising campaign.

The United Way of Union County is set to distribute almost three-quarters of a million dollars to local programs and social service agencies as a result of its 2013 fundraising campaign.

The agency said overall donations are expected to be up 3.2 percent from 2012 -- setting a record -- but fall short of the $1 million goal.

Shari Marsh, United Way of Union County's executive director, said the 2013 campaign is projected to finish with more than $954,000.

"This is the money used toward the 2014 funded programs. When the Community Investment Committee finalized their funding recommendations for the board, the projected campaign was $945,791, which is $8,209 less than the current projection," she said.

The Community Investment Committee, or CIC, is made up of board members as well as community representatives who are United Way donors. The committee recommends to the board which programs should be funded.

This past year, 20 CIC volunteers used certain indicators to determine where donor dollars would best be spent: lives changed, the ability to deliver services that meet pressing community needs, financial accountability and use of best practices.

During the evaluation process, nine CIC teams filled out reports from site visits to last year's funded programs. The reports were discussed at six committee meetings before final recommendations were prepared for the United Way Board of Trustees on Jan. 15.

Overall, United Way will provide $713,924.25 in community support this year. Of that, $594,594.05 will fund 42 programs at 27 partner agencies. Programs to be funded include pantries; senior centers; emergency and homeless shelters; disaster relief; services to homebound residents; and youth and wellness programs.

The remainder of the campaign funds will cover administrative expenses. The nonprofit also builds in a cushion for some pledges that are made but not kept.

"The United Way has fundraising expenses of $132,264, administration expenses of $54,512, $3,476 moved to the reserve fund and anticipated pledge loss expenses of $41,976. Combining these figures with the difference in our campaign projection illustrates where the other funds are directed," Marsh said.

The Salvation Army will be United Way's top-funded partner agency for the fifth straight year, receiving $132,000 for three programs -- two to prevent and address homelessness and one to coordinate a food pantry network among its own pantry, Richwood, Plain City and Milford Center.

Other top funded programs are:

* Maryhaven at the Mill Center, the county's new mental health-services provider, will receive $47,500 for operating North Star Center, an after-school youth site in Richwood, and for other youth programs that encourage leadership and drug-free choices.

* The Union County Chapter of the American Red Cross will get $44,500, $32,000 of which will fund disaster response. The remainder will go toward service to local military families and bloodmobiles.

* Memorial Hospital of Union County was approved for $43,700, most of which -- $38,500 -- will fund meals at three community sites and for homebound residents. The remaining $5,200 will fund speech and hearing therapy.

* Loving Care Hospice will use its $29,241.39 to serve terminally ill patients.

Not all of the recipients are based in Union County, but all serve local residents.

"Those whose physical locations are outside of the county include Boy Scouts, Discovery Riders, Girl Scouts, Heart of Ohio Homeless Shelter, Legal Aid Society and Turning Point. These organizations, for the most part, serve multiple counties' residents and seek support from those counties," Marsh said.

A complete line-by-line breakdown of United Way's 2014 allocations, is available at unitedwayofunioncounty. org.

Marsh said the board still is working on setting a goal for the 2014 fundraising year.