icon about usAbout Us | FAQs

What is Sherburne County Area United Way (SCAUW)?

SCAUW is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3), that unites people and resources to impact the Sherburne County area. We partner with local nonprofits, businesses, governments and others to address our community’s needs and decide how to create long-lasting changes.

What does SCAUW do?

SCAUW works to create long-lasting changes within our three focus areas of Education, Health and Financial Stability. We do this by providing educational programming, granting funds to nonprofit agencies, offering training and resources to groups, and providing various giving and investing alternatives to individuals and businesses. 

Who does SCAUW help?

SCAUW helps people living in our local community – Big Lake, Elk River, Nowthen, Otsego, Princeton, Santiago and Zimmerman.

How was SCAUW started?

SCAUW was founded in 1969 when a group of local volunteers established the Elk River United Fund. Their first campaign raised $10,000. The Elk River United Fund later became the Elk River United Way. In 1995, the name was changed to Caring Rivers United Way to better encompass all the communities in the service area. Our name was once again changed in 2010 to Sherburne County Area United Way to better define our geographic service location.

Are United Ways related?

SCAUW is completely autonomous from United Way Worldwide. SCAUW does not receive funds from nor raise funds for United Way Worldwide. SCAUW does pay a minimal fee for branding resources (name and logo), training and consulting services.

There are more than 1,200 United Ways across the country and each is independently incorporated and governed by local volunteers.

Why should I give?

When you support SCAUW, you are creating a better life for everyone in our community. Your gift helps fund local agencies that provide services and resources to people in the Sherburne County area, as well as, our direct programming for youth (iEmpower Youth Program) and the community.

Remember: all funds are raised local and stay local!

Who decides which agencies SCAUW funds?

Volunteers from our local community screen and select local, reliable and accountable agencies to fund with your contributions. Their recommendations are reviewed and approved by our board of directors.  

Our funded agencies are monitored to ensure they have measurable goals and results in the local community.

Agencies can apply for grants in February. For more information, visit For Nonprofits - Funding.

How do I give?

Thank you for supporting Sherburne County Area United Way.

You can give securely online.

You can make a check out to SCAUW and mail to:
Sherburne County Area United Way
231 Main St NW
Elk River, MN 55330

Additional ways to give can be found here

Is my donation tax-deductible?