HICKORY – Meghan Stripling from Conover School is this year’s Catawba County United Way Fair Share Donor Car Giveaway winner, claiming the prize of a new car donated by Paramount Automotive Group in Hickory.
And like last year, it only took one try.
Stripling was the first finalist on Thursday (Dec. 16) to attempt to start the car at Paramount Automotive, and it fired right up.
“I really didn’t think it was going to start but it just kept going,” Stripling said.
Winning the car was a surprising and joyful moment but knowing her contributions to the United Way every year helps improve the lives of those in need is what’s most important to her.
Stripling is a special education teacher at Conover Schools.
“The money that goes to Adult Life (a United Way funded partner) really helps my students be as independent as possible after they graduate from school,” she said.
Employees of companies participating in this year’s Catawba County United Way campaign who were Fair Share Donors (1 hour pay per month) went into 10 drawings starting in September for a chance at being a finalist to win a new car from Paramount Automotive.
The CCUW Fair Share Car Giveaway tradition was started when Benny Yount, owner of Paramount Automotive, decided he wanted a way to help support the annual Catawba County United Way campaign.
Nick Kincaid, Chief Operating Officer at Paramount Automotive said they are ready to give a car away again next year.
“We just want to give back to Catawba County, our local community and we feel like the United Way touches so many different charities and organizations that help so many people and that’s our main goal, to help others,” Kincaid said.
The Catawba County United Way’s work is focused on the building blocks for a good life: education, income and health. In 2020, local agencies who received funding from the CCUW helped improve the lives of 28,949 people.
Donor gifts helped fund tutoring programs for at-risk youth, provided shelter for the homeless, provided crisis assistance counseling for families, provided sexual assault services, supported emergency and disaster services, supported services for seniors and provided education on sexually transmitted diseases and Hep C.
This year’s 10 Car Giveaway finalists included: Peter Shonka from Catawba Co. Utilities and Engineering, Pamela Menter from Publix in The Village Shoppes, Amy Luckadoo from Vanguard HR, James Withers from City of Hickory, Kela Holsclaw from Shuford Yarns, Astrid Bautista from Shuford Yarns, Meghan Stripling from Conover School, Eric Stocker from Century Furniture, Winalda Thomas from Catawba Co. Government Social Services and Anna McGhee from Vanguard.
The drawings were done each week by RLI-CPA, Certified Public Accountants.
The nine finalists who didn’t win a car received special gifts donated by local companies and individual families to help show their support of the United Way.
They included RLI-CPA Certified Public Accountants, Peoples Bank, Martin Starnes & Associates CPAs, Duke Energy, BB&T/Truist, Henry Morphis, Pepsi, Lenoir Rhyne University.
To make a donation or to learn more about the Catawba County United Way’s mission call 828-327-6851 or visit ccunitedway.com. Also visit the Catawba County United Way’s Facebook page.