By LESLIE MORIARTY
MONROE — Debbie Rubatino knows the old saying, the more the merrier.
That’s why she and others, who have been organizing City Hall’s annual United Way campaign the past few years, decided to bring the entire city on board.
For the first time, Monroe city employees in 1999 joined forces with more than 40 other businesses and employers to host a citywide Monroe Community Caring Campaign for the United Way of Snohomish County.
It was so successful that they’re doing it again.
The kickoff for the citywide campaign will be at noon toMday at the Boys & Girls Club, 816 Village Way. A thermometer that will tell the campaign’s goal will be unveiled and pizza and pop will be served.
The Monroe campaign earned the United Way’s 1999 Innovation Award for combining the city, school district, businesses, service agencies, police and corporations into one large "community" campaign.
In all, the campaign brought in $103,000, which surpassed the goal of $100,000.
Karen Crowley, a spokeswoman for United Way of Snohomish County, said Monroe is the sole community in the county to take the lead and do a communitywide caring campaign.
Rubatino said the idea for everyone to work together came after city employees were asked to share their campaign skills with businesses.
"We just thought instead of us teaching others how to do this, we should all do it together," she said.
Rubatino said city employees who work on the campaign do so on their own time as volunteers. No city time or taxpayer dollars are used on the campaign.
"It is our way of showing that people here at City Hall do care about this community," she said.
Special events will take place throughout the month, including an Autumn Feast from 6 to 9 p.m. Oct. 15 at the East County Senior Center, 824 Village Way. There will be spaghetti and music.
For more information, call United Way of Snohomish County at 425-258-4521.
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