Carthage area residents and businesses raised almost $275,000 to benefit area agencies that help families during the 2017 Carthage United Way Fund Drive.

Carthage area residents and businesses raised almost $275,000 to benefit area agencies that help families during the 2017 Carthage United Way Fund Drive.
The Carthage United Way held its annual meeting and final report luncheon on Thursday, Feb. 9, where 2017 Drive Chairwoman Kelly Hartley reported that the 2017 drive had raised 92 percent of its $300,000 goal, or $274,880, over the past four months.
The money was raised by businesses, schools, government agencies and individuals in Carthage and the surrounding area, and will be distributed to 13 agencies who work in and around Carthage with families in need.
The 13 agencies that benefit from the fund drive are: Art Feeds Carthage; Ozark Trails Council of the Boy Scouts of America; Carthage Crisis Center; Carthage Crosslines Ministries; Cerebral Palsy Center of Tri County; Children's Haven; Children's Mercy Hospital; Community Clinic of Southwest Missouri; Girl Scouts of the Missouri Heartland; Jasper County 4H; Lafayette House, Carthage Salvation Army and the Special Olympics.
“The theme was pledge to make a difference,” Hartley said. “I appreciate everything that everyone here does to make a difference in our community.”
Hartley and the Fund Drive Committee recognized a number of businesses and individuals for their help and contribution to the drive.
Hartley also recognized the 2017 Spirit of Giving Award Winner.
Jacob Nevills, Carthage, set off in September of 2017 to ride from Wyandotte, Okla., to Alton, Ill., a round trip of more than 850 miles, to raise money for the Carthage United Way Drive.
Technical problems, weather issues and other problems forced him to cut the ride to a one-way trip, but in that 430 miles and 50 hours of riding, Nevills raised $4,300 for the drive.
“He should write a book about it because it was filled with adventure,” Hartley said. “And he did it all in the Spirit of Giving trying to make a difference in our community, which he does, every day.”