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.
United Way Program Helps People Achieve Their Goals
United Way of the Capital Region is now accepting applications for its Individual Development Account (IDA) Program. This program provides a 4 to 1 match that helps qualifying individuals and families in Dauphin, Cumberland and Perry counties to achieve one of three long-term financial goals: buying a first home, starting a business, or obtaining a degree or job training.
Participants open a savings account with PNC Bank and agree to save $10 a week for 100 weeks. Upon completion of the program, their $1,000 will be matched by United Way at a rate of 4 to 1, giving them a total of $5,000 toward their financial goal.
Program participants are required to attend basic financial training to better understand budgeting, saving, debt and credit. United Way will also provide training focused on the participant’s specific savings goals.
When Our Heroes Need Help: Veterans’ Mental Health
Every week hundreds of U.S. soldiers are welcomed home from the war in the Middle East. These heroes are celebrated by friends, family and their fellow Americans. However, what should be a happy reunion can often be a struggle as these soldiers try to acclimate to civilian life after difficult and traumatic experiences from their military service.
Most Americans do not see or hear about the mental health issues facing our soldiers until it makes the headlines; when a soldier reaches his or hers’ breaking point, which can turn fatal such as the recent shooting at Fort Hood. These may seem like isolated incidents but studies show that in 2011 more than 1.3 million veterans received specialized mental health treatment from the Veterans Administration for mental health related issues.
Realizing that mental health and our veterans is a pressing issue facing our community and our country, United Way of the Capital Region has completed a report on the subject. The report shows that combat experiences, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injury and drug and alcohol abuse are significant factors in veteran suicide risk.