Dear United Way Friends,
I hope this note continues to find you and yours safe and healthy.
This month I wanted to take us back to where we started with these updates by bringing the COVID-19 Response Fund full circle. The COVID-19 Response Fund was set up to address the immediate crisis needs we were seeing at the onset of the pandemic. I am happy to report that, before closing on September 30th, the COVID-19 Response Fund raised and distributed $4.5 million to nonprofit organizations working to address the emerging needs in our community. Thanks to over 900 donors, we were able to ensure rapid funding to meet basic needs for community members impacted by the pandemic, including food, shelter, housing, and emergency financial assistance. To view a complete list of funded programs, please click here.
It has truly been heartwarming and encouraging to see the generous response our community had to the COVID-19 Response Fund. In many ways we, at United Way of Forsyth County, were not surprised. We know firsthand that our community will rise to the challenge and has been investing in critical needs through our United Way Campaign for 97 years. As many of you know, the United Way Annual Campaign officially kicks off with our Moonlight Madness 5K event each year at the end of September. This year we held the event virtually and many of you did not let that deter you from joining in and supporting our organization. Now that we are a few weeks into our official campaign season, we continue to see the generosity of our community play out.
The COVID-19 Response Fund provided immediate crisis relief to many organizations in our community due to the unexpected and urgent nature of the pandemic. The United Way Campaign raises money to support the ongoing needs of our community all year long. We cannot forget about the needs that existed prior to COVID-19. They didn’t go away; in many cases they have been magnified. You can read the latest report and findings from a statewide COVID-19 Impact Survey here. Our community will require the consistent and ongoing services made possible through your support of United Way to recover. These dollars are invested in evidence-based programs that produce results in areas like education, housing, health, and financial stability.
We cannot be sure of the lasting impact COVID-19 will have on our community. While that is stressful for all of us, United Way will be here to continue to assess these needs through real-time data received daily. And we will continue to be nimble in our approach so we can rebuild a strong community. We know our campaign investments may look different in the future and we will need to be innovative in our approach to solve problems that may have been exposed by COVID-19. Fortunately, that’s what we have always done, whether we are in a pandemic or not, and you can count on us to continue to do so.
I’m exceedingly proud of the work that has been done. Our ability to simultaneously pull community partners together to start the COVID-19 Response Fund, shift our internal resources to support funded partners as their programs changed, and invest in approaches to new problems, such as our support of eight Remote Learning Centers, are all examples of how we fulfill our mission to solve problems no one organization can address alone. It is also a testament to how your previous contributions to the United Way Campaign have been used over the last year. These contributions made it all possible.
We invite you to join us in rebuilding a stronger, healthier community through a gift to our annual campaign. You can give through your workplace campaign or by clicking here. We live here, and if we invest here, we can all thrive here.
As always, thank you for LIVING UNITED.
President and CEO of United Way of Forsyth County