The Estevan community once again came together this year for the United Way Telethon, which raised more than $350,000.

A last-minute donation of $1,800 came in just before the telethon wrapped up late Saturday afternoon, which put the total amount raised at $350,053, surpassing the $350,000 goal.

The money will go towards 12 member agencies and four community impact partners.

"I think in general the weekend was an amazing community effort," said United Way Estevan Executive Director Heidi Hesselink. "We had so many volunteers come out and support the telethon. We had businesses doing promotions, we had businesses sending volunteers, businesses that donated. We had obviously numerous individual donors from the community. And our board members of course who worked tirelessly."

"I think it all went off well and we met our goal, so we're very happy."

Ruff Justice playing during TelethonRuff Justice, made up of Daniel Espelien and Mavrik Espelien, playing Telethon on Friday night (photo by Andrew McCormack)

Hesselink added that the money raising efforts had a photo finish.

"We were just bringing it right down to the wire there, it was a little bit of a nail bitter. And then someone came through with the last little bit that we needed to push us over to our goal, so that was very exciting," she said.

Several high school students from Estevan Comprehensive School were also involved in the 46th annual telethon.

"Every year the ECS SRC (Student Representative Council) does an amazing job of doing the overnight takeover for us," Hesselink said. "And they go right from midnight to 6 a.m., lots of fun and games entertaining everyone. And we had a huge crowd this year...lots of kids came out and it was really exciting to see."

Hesselink said the event is always a team effort, and an important initiative that impacts a lot of different sectors.

"It is such a fun community event...we really want to thank the community for helping us reach our goal so we can continue to support our member agencies and our community impact partners," Hesselink said. "It really takes the community to come together so that we can help everyone in our community have the opportunity to reach their full potential."

"It's just so much fun to bring the community together for such an awesome, important part of our society. It really is an amazing community event and it supports so many people in our community. And we really appreciate everything that the community does to come together."