What is your mission?
Our mission is to unite people and resources to improve the quality of life in the Midlands. We do this through direct programs and partnerships that create generational change by promoting resiliency, equity, and opportunity for everyone in the Midlands. This past year, United Way served more than 26,250 people in the Midlands.
What differentiates your organization from other specialists in the field?
United Way of the Midlands serves a vital role in our community by filling in the gaps between government services and smaller nonprofits and leveraging resources and funding for our community and partners. Only United Way has the expertise and local partnerships to be the convener who provides large-scale solutions to pervasive community problems, like affordable housing or lack of basic health services.
What is the latest trend in your business?
Our first step in creating generational change is employing new, innovative principles in our family stability and resiliency work that takes a two-generation approach to breaking the cycle of poverty as well as transforming how our community approaches emergency crisis assistance. This approach provides long-term case management to help parents improve their workforce skills to obtain better-paying jobs, reduce barriers such as lingering legal issues, and achieve and sustain housing stability in safe neighborhoods. This model also works with the family’s school to ensure that children are enrolled in tutoring as well as after-school and summer programs to provide for their social and emotional development. Finally, this model is structured over a 12 to 18 month period to not only give the family the opportunity to achieve stability, but more importantly, maintain stability.
What is something people would be surprised to learn about you or your business?
United Way of the Midlands is volunteer driven. Local volunteers raise funds, help direct these funds to the most pressing local needs and evaluate programs for effectiveness. We have more than 150 volunteers directly supporting United Way, and we mobilize more than 3,500 volunteers annually to serve non-profit partners as well.