ELU Celebrates Record-Breaking Hygiene Drive in United Way MV’s 100th Year

UTICA, N.Y. – For the fourth year, United Way of the Mohawk Valley’s Emerging Leaders United (United Way MV ELU) has partnered with area businesses to host a drive for hygiene items. And 2021, made for a record-breaking year for hygiene donations! This year, 48 local businesses participated with their employees, and customers collecting a whopping 11,120 donated items valued at $34,970.68!

Being United Way MV ELU’s annual hygiene item collection, each year, ELU partners with local businesses to collect hygiene products for non-profit agencies in the Mohawk Valley. These hygiene items have distributed to six local non-profits including domestic violence shelters, agencies assisting homeless individuals, food pantries, and kitchens.

“I am humbled by the outpouring of support this year,” said Leanne Allen, the Emerging Leaders United Volunteer Membership Committee Chair. “We have more than doubled our number of companies that took part in the Hygiene Drive, and breaking records during a global pandemic shows the heart of the Mohawk Valley and that desire to give back when it’s needed most.”

Post-pandemic, with still rising numbers, it is astounding to see local companies come together to help those most in need and allow our community to continue to thrive. United Way partnered with many local organizations to collect items through their workplace and at United Way's office. Among the items collected were deodorant, toothbrushes, toothpaste, hand sanitizing solutions, cleaning products, diapers, baby wipes, laundry detergent, soap, shampoo, and feminine hygiene products.

“A record-breaking year! The Hygiene Drive is such an important part of what we do here at United Way to connect people with opportunities to impact and connect non-profits to resources. This really exemplifies what ELU is all about,” said United Way MV’s Executive Director & CEO Erin Gutierrez Matt. “This effort is just one of several examples of how ELU is making an impact right here in our local community.”

This year, a few companies truly stood out with their efforts to help ELU with the success of the Hygiene Drive. Lowes was among the top performing companies, who donated 4,778 items valued at $16,188. Braden Supply was also a top performer, who donated 1,200 canisters of disinfectant wipes valued at $5,000. Other top performers include NBT Bank, Modern Dentist, Utica First Insurance, and First Source FCU.

United Way ELU is a membership affinity group within United Way for individuals between 21-40 years of age donating $100 or more to United Way MV. ELU Members receive exclusive benefits and opportunities, such as meet-ups and discounts on United Way ELU events. More details about being a member or taking a leadership volunteer role and joining a United Way ELU committee can be found at www.unitedwaymv.org/elu.

Participating businesses included: Adirondack Chiropractic, Ancient Shakes, Angela's Salon & Co., Baird, Braden Supply, Broadway Utica, Delta Hotel, First Source FCU, Girl Scouts, Herkimer BOCES Student Council, Hospice & Palliative Care, Human Technologies, Hummels, ICAN, James Roback DDS, Jay-K Lumber, Kekis Citgo, Kelberman Center, Life Plan, Lowes, Lucianna's Boutique, M&T Bank, Mecca Dental, Modern Dentist, Mohawk Valley Wellness, NBT Bank, Nelson Associates AE, Northwestern Mutual, NY Sash, Packy's Pub, Paradigm Consulting, Inc. , PJ Green, Retro Fitness in Yorkville, Rising Phoenix Holdings Corporation, Rozanski, Salon Elements of Style, Site Seeker, SoHo Nails, Special Metals, Sunset Wood, The Grizzly Giraffe, The House of the Good Shepherd, Turnball Insurance, Universal Bookkeeper, Utica Chamber of Commerce, Utica First Insurance, Utica Gas & Electric FCU, and Whitcraft.

For more information on United Way of the Mohawk Valley’s Emerging Leaders United, visit www.unitedwaymv.org/elu.


About United Way of the Mohawk Valley

Since 1921, United Way of the Mohawk Valley (United Way MV) has been a human service leader. Its mission is to create a thriving community by connecting people, resources, and solutions throughout the Mohawk Valley. United Way MV helps thousands of individuals and families throughout Oneida and Herkimer Counties by bringing people and organizations together to solve our community’s challenges. As one of the area’s top funders, dozens of programs rely on United Way MV funding each year. Their funded partners and United Way led initiatives address crucial community issues in the impact areas of health, education, and financial stability. United Way is a leader in innovation through projects and initiatives such as Academics First, the region’s first extended-day childcare center; Ready for Kindergarten, a unique holistic approach to early childhood education; creating financial stability, and 211, connecting community members with the help when they need it. For information about United Way of the Mohawk Valley, to donate or to get involved visit www.unitedwaymv.org, or call 315.733.4691.