IDAHO FALLS, Idaho -

The United Way of Southeastern Idaho is starting off the new year on a positive note: It has surpassed its $630,000 fundraising goal for 2012 by more than $10,000.

The donations go to help those in need in a seven-county area in southeastern Idaho. Donations come from individuals as well as area organizations, such as the Idaho National Laboratory.

United Way's office manager, Robin Nelson is extending a hearty thanks to all who have helped.

"A really big thank you to the community,” she said. “We know times are pretty tough right now, but thank you for the enthusiasm and encouragement we've had, the great volunteers we have working in the workplaces that really campaign for us and share the news about what we do."

The United Way takes donations year round, and encourages people to donate before the new year, so you can benefit in the current tax season.