EAST PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — The Heart of Illinois United Way celebrated over 100 years of giving back to the community at the Par-A-Dice Hotel Wednesday, Feb. 28.

United Way staff, volunteers, and donors came together to celebrate a century of community impact.

President of the Heart of Illinois United Way Jennifer Zammuto said while many things have changed, some things have remained the same.

“What’s been the same is a really strong sense of volunteerism and community coming from the central Illinois community,” Zammuto said.

During the celebration, the United Way announced that they managed to raise $9,115,359 during their 2021 campaign.

They also awarded the Peoria Housing Authority with the Campaign Achievement Award for the largest percentage increase in employee participation. Burklund Distributors, Inc. received the Best-in-Class Award for continued campaign excellence from year to year.

“A huge thank you to everyone in this community that supports this work so that we can have people have their basic needs met, They are educated, they are financially stable, and they’re healthy, and that’s good for our entire community and economy,” Zammuto said.

The United Way was founded on Oct. 18, 1921, and they launched their first campaign in January 1922. The United Way brings together people from business, labor, government, health, and human services to address community needs in Peoria, Tazewell, Woodford, Marshall, Putnam, and Stark Counties.

More information is available at the Heart of Illinois United Way’s website.