Advocates for United Way - Michael Gillespie
"Giving back to our community is part of our culture at Hersha. The Capital Region is where we work and it is where we live and raise our families. United Way plays a critical role in the quality of life for our friends and neighbors. I volunteer with United Way because I want to play a part in making our community a great place to be."
Volunteers Needed to Help Distribute Funds
United Way of the Capital Region is looking for dedicated volunteers from Dauphin, Cumberland and Perry counties to help decide what community programs and services should receive funding in 2015/2016.
Many people wonder how United Way decides where contributions will go and how much funding programs will receive. Its people just like you that make the fund distribution process work.
Each year approximately 200 volunteers receive training, visit program sites, review funding requests, meet with agency staff and board members, and evaluate programs. They make sure programs are needed, evaluate their success, and make sure agencies applying for funding meet our accountability standards. Volunteers review audits and other financial reports and consider an agency’s financial health in the decision-making process. When needed, these volunteers will also meet with agencies that are facing challenges throughout year to provide oversight and technical assistance.
The process takes about 2-1/2 days (1/2 day for training, and one day each for agency tours and presentations) and is conducted between the months of January and March.
Help Kick Off Our Holiday Book Drive
Help give the gift of literacy this season through United Way of the Capital Region’s Holiday Book Drive at Barnes & Noble in Camp Hill! Visit the store anytime November 1 - December 31 and purchase a book or books for kids in need in Cumberland, Dauphin and Perry counties.
We’ll be kicking off the book drive during a special event on November 1 from 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. at the Barnes & Noble in Camp Hill. Bring your kids for a special story time that includes pictures and activities with Mouse from the book, If You Give A Mouse A Cookie! View the Book Drive Kick Off Flyer.
United Way Announces Progress in 2014 Campaign
With a goal to improve lives in the community, United Way of the Capital Region announced it has raised 22 percent or $2,659,284 of its $11,950,000 goal as of October 20, 2014. More than six weeks remain in the 2014 campaign.
“We’re gratified our community is again stepping up to support the important work of our United Way,” said 2014 Campaign Chair Sharon Ryan, president of Dasher Services, Inc. “While we’re pleased to be tracking on pace with last year, there is still much work to be done over the next six weeks.”
In September, United Way publicized its fundraising goal, which represents a $250,000 increase over last year’s goal. United Way will announce the amount raised during the 2014 campaign at its Celebration Reception on January 15, 2015 at the Hilton in Harrisburg.
Holiday Volunteer Opportunities
The Volunteer Center can help you and your family, work group or service group find a holiday volunteer project. Holiday Connections, an agency holiday project and wish list, is available to help individuals and companies select holiday projects by providing a multitude of options, complete with contact information.
Whether your company (or even your department) is interested in adopting a family and purchasing gifts, collecting food, gathering winter essentials for homeless families, volunteering at a gift-wrapping booth to help an agency raise money, or simply donating money, we can help you find just the right match.
Volunteers Needed to Help Low-Income Families with Tax Preparation
Volunteers are needed to offer free tax preparation to help families in need claim thousands of dollars in federal and state tax refunds. No previous experience is required and training is provided.
Last tax year, 225 volunteers provided free income tax preparation for low- to moderate-income families as part of the Money In Your Pocket Campaign, a community collaboration of organizations committed to the economic stability of local families. Nationally the effort is known as the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, or VITA. In tax year 2013, 4,707 tax returns were filed, resulting in more than $5.3 million returned to local families.
Volunteers will offer tax preparation services at designated sites in the Capital Region from January 29 through April 15 during day and evening hours. All volunteers will be trained to prepare computerized, electronic returns.
The Volunteer Center – Get Involved!
The Volunteer Center is a program of United Way of the Capital Region. Our mission is to advocate for volunteerism and serve as a clearinghouse for volunteer opportunities and needs in Dauphin, Cumberland and Perry counties. Every day, we work with a growing network of non-profit health and human service agencies, environmental groups, schools and nursing homes to recruit and place volunteers. Last year, more than 4,000 individuals were referred to non-profits throughout the Capital Region.
To learn more about volunteer opportunities through our Volunteer Center, visit the Volunteer Center page.
Moving our Mission Forward Through Collective Impact
In 2013, United Way of the Capital Region completed an intensive and thorough strategic planning process. We looked at changes in the community, talked to program partners, business leaders, donors, volunteers, government leaders and people working in the areas of health, education and basic needs.
More than 1,900 people responded to our surveys and many attended focus groups. Through this process we learned that for far too many people, life in the Capital Region is not getting better.
- One in seven children lives in poverty.
- One in seven young people don’t graduate from high school.
- The income gap continues to increase resulting in a shrinking middle class.
- Needs continue to increase while government resources decrease.