From Emergency Response to
Long Term Recovery:
A Letter from our Executive Director
The impact of COVID-19 is reaching into every corner of our community. More people than ever before are struggling, and some are being pushed over the brink. But United Way is here to help, just as we have been for the past 67 years.

The pandemic is not going away any time soon, and families are experiencing challenges that they never expected. Some have new unexpected expenses as they work to figure out childcare and purchase groceries. Workers that were furloughed or laid off are trying to make up for lost pay and struggling to make ends meet. Seniors are facing isolation and wondering how they can safely get the food and medicine they need.

COVID-19 has turned the world upside down for all of us. But together, we are making a difference. United Way of Henderson County stepped up to respond to emergency needs during the initial crisis, and we will also be here for the long recovery process that lies ahead. Our ongoing work of improving education, financial stability, and health while supporting basic needs and crisis services has never been more important.

But, it will take all of us working together to rebuild and move forward. I have confidence that we will continue to bring light into dark places. By fighting against the forces that leave people desperate or hopeless, we are creating positive change and new opportunities. Robert Ingersoll said it well: “We rise by lifting others.” May we reach out to those around us and rise together in the challenging days ahead toward a brighter future.
Denise Cumbee Long
Executive Director
With United Way's Help, Council on Aging Expands Routes During COVID to Continue to Serve Community
United Way partner agency Council on Aging manages the Meals on Wheels program for Henderson County, which last year delivered over 65,000 nutritious meals to county residents who are homebound. We recently received this story from them about one of their volunteers, affectionately nicknamed "Goody."

Goody has been a stalwart Meals on Wheels volunteer for the last three years. As a substitute driver, he would often be available 3-5 days a week to fill in on whatever route was needed. Some of the routes cover 40-50 miles in winding, back-country roads. Goody would do them all, happily serving those in need in our community.

Unfortunately, in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, Goody was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He lives in an area that historically has had a large wait list for Meals on Wheels, sometimes requiring a wait of up to a year. Thankfully with funding from United Way, the Council on Aging has recently been able to expand the Meals on Wheels program by adding four new routes, including the area that serves Goody.

"When our friend and volunteer Goody asked for personal help from Meals on Wheels, we were glad to be able to provide immediate support to Goody in his battle against cancer," said Keith Logan, Executive Director of the Council on Aging. "This is a great story of one who so faithfully served who now is grateful to be served."

Visit our Funded Partners page on our website to learn more about our partners who are directly impacted by your gifts.
Volunteer Needs Increase Across Community
Find Your Perfect Opportunity Today!
Volunteer Hendo continues to be your one-stop shop for finding meaningful volunteer opportunities, whether you want to work from home or in person. Here are a few of our newest listings:

The Blue Ridge Humane Society is looking for committed individuals to join their board of directors. This is an extraordinary opportunity for an individual who is passionate about animal welfare and who has a track record of board leadership. Click here to learn more.

Volunteers are needed to assemble non-partisan voter packets at home for the League of Women Voters, now through November 3. Volunteers will pick up materials, assemble packets at their convenience, in their own homes, and then return the completed packets. Click here to learn more and sign up.

Be ready to help after a disaster! Due to predictions for an active hurricane and wildfire season and the complexities of COVID-19, the Red Cross will need thousands of volunteers to care for people when disasters strike. Train now to be a Red Cross Disaster Health Associate Volunteer so you can answer the call when your community needs it most! Click here to learn more and sign up.

Visit to find a volunteer position that meets your skills, interests, and abilities. If you have any questions about becoming a volunteer, or listing your agency's volunteer needs, please contact volunteer coordinator Malisia Wilkins at
Take the N.C. Broadband Survey to Help Ensure our Community has Adequate Access to Internet
The N.C. Department of Information Technology has created the N.C. Broadband Survey to gather information on locations without adequate internet access and speeds in our community. Taking the 5-minute survey helps to identify high-speed broadband gaps in our community. With schools in remote learning environments, and many still working from home - access to Internet is more important than ever!

For Homes & Businesses WITH Internet Service Visit to take the survey now.

For Homes & Businesses WITHOUT Internet Service, Text “internet” to 919-750-0553. Standard text messaging rates will apply.
United We Count: Now is the Time to Complete Your Census
Your census count matters, as funding allocations for community programs are dependent on an accurate count for Henderson County.

Completing your 2020 Census is easy! Visit and complete your form online, or call 844-330-2020.

Do your part today!