A growing community need inspired donors of local pacesetting companies to generously give as the 2021 United Way Community Campaign gets off to a strong start.
David Bohne, 2021 United Way Campaign Chair and CEO of Broadway Bank, recently announced that 86 companies, organizations, and United Way Impact and Community Partners have pledged $33,769,911 so far this year toward helping our community’s children, individuals and families gain strength and stability – including those hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.
A number of workplace campaigns kick off early, setting the pace for the community-wide campaign by building momentum and generating enthusiasm, support and leadership.
“There has been overwhelming support for the 2021 United Way Campaign despite, and to counter, the far-reaching effects of the Coronavirus,” said Bohne. “While our community faces this added challenge, donors came forward to help the growing population on the edge — those who never thought they would need food, or help with rent, a utility bill or childcare.”
Bohne was joined by United Way Board Chair Lisa Friel, retired managing partner for Ernst & Young, as they addressed nearly 300 people participating in a Zoom virtual event.
“Thanks to contributions from donors, volunteers and corporate partners, United Way has been able to improve lives while also addressing the needs of our community during a continuing pandemic,” said Friel. “United Way donors believe in helping everyone, especially the most vulnerable, as we navigate difficult times together.”
Donations to United Way combine to help disconnected teens (not in school and not working), families who can’t afford that trip to the ER, parents without quality childcare, seniors with empty pantries, and babies who don’t receive prenatal care or who are abandoned, neglected and abused.
“Fortunately, our campaign is off to a strong start, and we’ll be able to help thousands of people across Bexar County,” Bohne said.
“Most times you can’t plan for when you will need United Way services,” said Bohne. “United Way helps those with a sudden crisis or loss—such as losing a job, a struggling child without the internet for home-school learning, or an unexpected health diagnosis.
Working with corporate and nonprofit partners, United Way brings together schools, churches, local government, active duty and retired military members, and others to address emergency and ongoing social challenges. The organization also assists families where several generations have been born into poverty and are not equipped with the tools to move out of their situations. United Way’s Dual Generation Initiative serves children and families to help them find safe housing, education, childcare and employment.
“San Antonio is a leader in United Way giving because there is a strong sense of community and generosity here,” Bohne said. “We are able to combine donor resources to lift up the community and enhance the collective capacity of people to care for one another and overcome their circumstances,” he added.
United Way invests in strategies and programs that work to prepare children for school and life, help students graduate and succeed, strengthen the well-being and self-sufficiency of individuals and families, and provide safety net services for those in immediate need of food, clothing, shelter and disaster assistance.
Last year 363,683 people called or visited the website of United Way’s 2-1-1 Helpline—specifically seeking safety net services such as utility and rent assistance, food, clothing, shelter, childcare, job placement and many other vital services.
“United Way is committed to ensuring everyone has the opportunity to reach their full potential,” said Bohne. “Despite the ongoing and unpredictable pandemic, there has been strong support for the campaign this year. We face challenges as a community, but we keep proving that together we can make the best of our circumstances, showing the real spirit of caring and giving that keeps moving San Antonio forward.”