A local social services agency is hoping to raise a record amount of money to fund the nonprofit organizations that connect children with counseling, mentoring or after-school programs, provide public transportation to nearly 9,000 people annually and aid families displaced by fires or storm damage.

The United Way of Johnson County hopes to raise $1.56 million this year.

The agency announced its annual campaign goal to hundreds of people at the carnival-themed kick-off breakfast on Tuesday. During the coming months, campaign volunteers will ask area employers to encourage their employees to give to the United Way, through one-time donations or deductions from their paychecks.

Hundreds of residents and Center Grove students then travel to helping organizations and homes across the county to spend the day volunteering for the annual Day of Caring.

The United Way of Johnson County funds 18 local nonprofit agencies, such as Johnson County Senior Services and Youth Connections. The agency also operates eight programs, including Christmas Angels and a program that is meant to combat homelessness, No Place to Call Home. The agencies and programs helped 37,000 people in Johnson County last year.

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Magen Kritsch is an editorial assistant at the Daily Journal. She can be reached at mkritsch@dailyjournal.net or 317-736-2770.