Fists forming a circle | united

United We Fight. united We Win.

Each year United Way runs a campaign to financially support local nonprofit partners who are serving the community in incredible ways. The United Way of the Kearney Area fights for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in Kearney and area communities. You can get involved by donating, advocating and volunteering. United Way serves communities in Buffalo, Custer, Kearney, Franklin, Harlan and Phelps counties. 


Your donation stays local and helps build a better tomorrow for lives in the communities we serve. Did you know that as a community member you get to have a voice in how dollars are invested in the community? These decisions are made in April every year. Visit the volunteer page to learn more. 

Become a Campaign Sponsor

Your business can support United Way by becoming a sponsor. Past campaign sponsors have included:

  • Allo Fiber (2022)
  • Parker Hannifin (2021)
  • Brandon Built (2020)
  • Royal Engineered Composites (2019)
  • Kearney Regional Medical Center (2018)
  • Eaton (2017)
  • Team Concepts (2016)

Are you interested in becoming a sponsor? Email to learn more. 

Host an Employee Campaign

You can ignite generosity in the community by hosting an employee campaign. August through November the United Way staff and board members visit local businesses. Your employees have the opportunity to donate directly out of each paycheck, making it simple for them to invest in the community, just like they might make small investments into their future through a retirement program your company offers. Many businesses choose to match their employees' donations, making the impact even more significant!

Do you want to host an employee campaign at your own company? Contact

Become a Campaign chair

Campaign chairs Josh Jelden and Kyle Means

Campaign chairs help bring awareness to United Way through advocating. Campaign chairs are people who have strong connections and influence. They are also people who are passionate about radical generosity and making Kearney a great place to live. Following their year of service, chairs become honorary "Blackshirts." Blackshirts continue to advocate for the community through United Way. 

Blackshirts include:

  • Josh and Nikki Erickson
  • Brad Kernick
  • Gary Straatman
  • Judi Sickler
  • Ron Eckloff
  • Bruce Blankenship
  • Tim Shada
  • Troy Brockmeier
  • Bob Lammers
  • Dave Chally
  • Lanny Gerdes
  • Ed Berglund
  • Michael Schnieders
  • Kent Barney
  • Kyle Means
  • Josh Jelden
  • Matt and Kim Meister
  • Gary Anderson
  • Andrea McClintic
  • Dave and Diane Keiter
  • Kim Smith
  • and many more!

If you are interested in becoming a campaign chair, please email