June 10, 2010; Source: Ledger Dispatch | We’ve heard of food and coat drives before—but a call for the community to donate toilet paper? No, this isn’t some poor attempt at bathroom humor. Rather, a United Way in Sacramento, Calif., is making plans for its second toilet paper drive, a one-day event that last year brought in 35,000 donated rolls. Flush with last year’s success, the United Way California Capital Region is aiming for about a 50 percent increase, or a total of 50,000 in donated rolls.

An announcement on the group’s website asks, “How many squares will you spare?” According to local United Way officials, expenditure on toilet paper is no laughing matter, especially for groups that serve people on site. Depending on their size, local nonprofits spend between $5,000 and $15,000 annually, and by asking the community to help, United Way wants to help area nonprofits prevent their precious cash from literally going down the drain.

“It’s amazing the number of expenses nonprofits face that people don’t think about,” said Steve Heath, president and CEO of United Way California Capital Region. United Way will deliver the donated rolls to many of the 142 agencies it supports in surrounding counties shortly after the end of Friday’s drive.—Bruce Trachtenberg