Tell us how you LIVE UNITED

At United Way of Central Massachusetts we know all the great things you do to LIVE UNITED. Now it's time to share! Let everyone know how you make a difference in our community whether you GIVE, ADVOCATE, or VOLUNTEER. You make a difference and we share! We hope your stories will inspire others to unleash their caring spirit and help make central MA a great place to live and raise a family.

Friday, September 23, 2011

September 15, 2011 -- 1,400 individuals volunteered throughout our community on our annual Day of Caring. Featuring business leaders, community members, government officials, and college students who spent the day inside and outside dozens of non-profits through out central Massachusetts. Donned with their LIVE UNITED t-shirts, teams worked on more than 90 projects at dozens of agencies in our community during United Way of Central Massachusetts Day of Caring, as part of the largest single day volunteer activity.

Teams worked in two shifts: from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. or from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Some hearty volunteers actually worked the whole day on a specific project. All volunteers were invited to a free lunch at the Atrium of St. Vincent Hospital, where the Anna Maria College Marching Band greeted them.

Thank you to all of the volunteers, agencies, companies and sponsors who make this day possible!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Thank you volunteers!

April 10 - 16 2011 is National Volunteer Week and United Way of Central Massachusetts would like to take the opportunity to extend its sincerest appreciation to all volunteers. Thank you!

National Volunteer Week celebrates ordinary people doing extraordinary things to improve communities across the nation and right here in central Massachusetts.

Congratulations to this year's "Inspire by Example" Outstanding Volunteer Award recipients:

* Jennifer MacDonald: Nominated by University of Massachusetts Medical School
* Vaughn Hathaway: Nominated by African Community Education and Dynamy
* Arthur Joseph: Nominated by American Red Cross of Central Massachusetts
* Unum/South High Community School partnership

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

"Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does."
- William James

Thank you to all of our special loved ones who give so generously of their time treasure and talent throughout the year, you truly make a difference in the community.

Monday, December 6, 2010

2010 Holiday Wish List

Celebrate the holidays by giving back to your community!

As the holidays approach and we reflect on the blessings we have received during the year, our minds and hearts turn to those in need in our community. As has been the tradition for many years, the Community Services Program at United Way of Central Massachusetts is proud to bring you our Holiday Wish List as a way for you to help, right here in central Massachusetts.

The Holiday Wish List offers a wide range of opportunities for businesses and individuals to support non-profit organizations that help local children and families. Find ways to help through donating gifts, volunteering at a holiday party, or creating food baskets for families. Search through the list and find a way to give back that suits you.
To download the print version of the Wish List click here

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Thank You Day of Caring Volunteers!

On September 15, nearly 15,000 men and women across the state set aside their standard to-do lists and went into the community to participate in United Way’s Day of Caring, an effort to advance the common good through one-day projects while fostering long-term volunteer engagement. This is the first time Massachusetts' 20 United Ways have joined together for a single coordinated volunteer day, thanks to the leadership of Tim Garvin, CEO of United Way of Central Massachusetts and the chair of the Council of Massachusetts United Ways. Even Governor Deval Patrick has proclaimed September 15, 2010 as a statewide DAY OF CARING.

We'd love to hear about your Day of Caring experiences, so leave us a comment.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Working to prevent summer learning loss

Word Game, Telegram & Gazette

Wednesday, August 18, we had the opportunity to visit one of the unique programs that has taken place at summer camps in our area for the last two months to prevent the typical summer learning loss that comes with being out of the classroom for more than 8 weeks each year.

United Way and seven other partners have worked to pilot a Summer Learning and Literacy program at four area camp locations. The program isn’t about getting kids to read books, but rather incorporating the art of reading and literacy into typical camp activities. The program was funded through a grant by the Department of Early Education and Care and is being tested throughout the state in urban areas.

Those in attendance for the tour and speaking program at the YWCA Camp Wind in the Pines in Leicester were in full agreement that this is an essential program that needs to be widely implemented and accessible to all children.
Flickr photos

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Volunteering data

The Corporation for National & Community Service (CNCS) released its annual "Volunteering in America" (VIA) report. Learn what the data shows about our community, link to the VIA report>>

The work United Way is doing is helping our community recover from the worst recession since World War II. Civic service is not only recession proof, it's a key solution to the recession. Americans responded to the worst economic downturn since WWII by reaching out their hands to help their neighbors and their communities. Although many analysts expected to see the country's crime rate rise dramatically, and the spirit of unity fade, Americans instead posted the highest volunteer involvement recorded since 2003.
  • 2009 saw the first significant increase in volunteer numbers since 2003.
  • 63.4 million Americans volunteered in 2009, an increase of almost 1.6 million - the single largest increase since 2003.
  • 2009's volunteer service was valued at more than $168 billion.
It's not where we fall on the list; it's how we rank in the heart of our communiy. The VIA research shows there are conditions which may hinder volunteering that are beyond our control.
  • Some of our most densely populated cities historically find themselves lower on the list of large sized cities.VIA data suggests several factors that lower volunteer rates in large metropolitan cities.
  • High foreclosure rates drive down the rate of volunteering.
  • Long commutes limit opportunities to volunteer
  • In areas and cities with higher poverty rates volunteering is also less common.
  • Cities with many renters, as opposed to homeowners, have less volunteer engagement due to less long-term community attachment.
Finding new life for our mission/goals by ramping up the reach to your community's youth. Millennials and teens are redefining "community" to extend far beyond the neighborhood in which they live. Because of technologies such as social media, their communities have no geographical boundaries. Youth are using that technology and communal connectivity to drive change and are not waiting for instruction to make change happen. They represent a powerful influx of energy and enthusiasm into the volunteer sector.
  • The volunteer rates for both Millennial & teen-aged volunteers increased in 2009.
  • In 2009, 10.8 million Millennials dedicated 1.1 billion hours of service to communities across the country.
  • 21.6 percent of Millennials volunteered in 2009.
  • In 2009, 4.4 million teenagers (ages 16 to 19) dedicated 389.5 million hours of service to communities across the country. 26 percent of teenagers volunteered in 2009.
We are bringing the experts to the table by utilizing older citizens who are looking for engagement after retirement, for skills-based volunteering. Older Americans, many who've had successful professional careers, are ready and willing to lend their expertise to our community. Older Americans have high rates of volunteering and strong commitment to community.
  • In 2009, 9.1 million older adults (age 65 and older) dedicated 1.6 billion hours of service to communities across the country.
  • 20.4 % of that time was volunteered in professional and management activities.
Thank you volunteers! Your commitment to United Way and the community makes a difference locally and nationally.