Community helps Johns Island School
Trident United Way's commitment to education is unwavering and we are proud to announce the launch of Literacy United: Johns Island effort at Mt. Zion Elementary School.

After seeing the ongoing successes of Trident United Way’s Tri-County Reading by Third Project, local philanthropists began advocating to bring these literacy interventions to children on Johns Island. Today, Literacy United: Johns Island has launched.

With kindergarten readiness being a key indicator of academic success, the partnership strives to build on the University of Florida Lastinger Center’s program that improves overall reading levels, phonemic awareness and learning skills to position students for academic success. Literacy United fuses the small group intervention model with a community support framework that has proven successful outcomes for children and families.

Over the summer teachers received innovative and specialized training for the small group instruction program that is already underway.

Mt. Zion Elementary School also received support from Trident United Way and our partners as one of the beneficiaries of our annual school supply drive. Backpacks and school supply kits including more than 80 items each, were provided for students. Parents, principals and students were thrilled to be supported by their community.
Virtual School Supply Drive a success

Mt. Zion was among several Tri-County schools to receive much-needed items in our virtual school supply drive.

Trident United Way's Young Leaders United and our community came through leading an incredible effort. funding nearly $42,000 worth of school supplies!

More than 300 individual donors and 16 companies opened up their hearts to collect nearly 8,000 items for children in need at elementary schools in Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester counties.

Pictured L to R, Midland Park Primary Principal Elizabeth McCraw, Asst. Principal S. Gayle Morris, Trident United Way President & CEO Chloe Knight Tonney, Select Health of SC Market Director Courtnay Thompson and North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey

AmeriCorps to the rescue!
AmeriCorps members play a vital role in furthering the life-changing work by Trident United Way and our partner agencies.

When COVID-19 forced widespread closures in March, three AmeriCorps members were sent from the Trident United Way Resource Connection Centers to assist Helping Hands of Goose Creek with daily food distributions.

“We lost nearly half of our volunteers in March, so without the help of our awesome AmeriCorps members, we would have had to reduce the service days," said Helping Hands executive director Jennifer Jones. "With the increase in new families that sought our assistance and the change of operations from indoors to outdoors, this partnership was key. It has led to us hosting one of the AmeriCorps members as an AmeriCorps Family Navigator for our pantry, starting in September. This will greatly expand our service capabilities to assist clients with SNAP Application and Medicaid filing, as well as financial education and tax preparation."
Recently, AmeriCorps welcomed new members who will be working at these agencies:

  • Communities In Schools of the Charleston Area
  • East Cooper Community Outreach
  • Helping Hands of Goose Creek
  • Meeting Street Academy
  • Midland Park Elementary
  • Palmetto Project
  • SC Thrive
  • Trident United Way Resource Connection Centers in Berkeley & Dorchester Counties

Partnering to fight COVID-19
Trident United Way partners with the Tri-County's leading healthcare providers and community organizations to improve health for all. We created the Healthy Tri-County Initiative, which includes 68 organizations and around 1,100 individuals who interact with network activities and utilize resources.

One group we are proud to work with is Select Health of South Carolina. Recently, their Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Kirt Caton, spoke with us about how fall is a time we all must re-focus our efforts to fight the spread of COVID-19. Please click here or the video window below to hear some important tips from Dr. Caton.
How Trident United Way adds value during a crisis

What would the COVID-19 response have looked like without Trident United Way? We've been so busy helping our partners that the thought hasn't crossed our minds up until now.
Your generosity, coupled with an experienced and dedicated team who forged ahead during uncertain times, proved invaluable.
From the initial shutdowns in March, our team rallied and quickly assembled the resources necessary to take on this massive economic crisis.
Given our deep experience from previous disasters, Trident United Way quickly deployed resources and expertise. We used a proven formula to support trusted community partners who can quickly address community needs.
Without Trident United Way, there would not have been the time, money or expertise available to address this pandemic - these tools could not be created in an instant.
We know who to call, what to do. We have 76 years of ‘local,’ meaning we are not exchanging business cards in the midst of a crisis.
The individual stories continue to touch us, like the individual requests from people who write us to find out housing options for an ill relative needing cancer treatment and an affordable place to live.
We are essential and local.
Trident United Way adds value to individual donations through our established networks like our 211 resource line, which has served more than 70,000 people in the state for 2020, dealing with a wide range of issues. This tool gives us an instant snapshot of community needs so we can respond in an agile manner.

Our CharityTracker tool brings together 320 organizations who use this efficient computer program to provide $1.3 million of monetary assistance (excluding food, clothing or shelter). That equals nearly 64,000 services provided from Jan. 1 to Sept. 10, 2020.

We have also shared these data with elected and community leaders regionally and statewide to pinpoint real-time needs and opportunities.
Our three focus areas are evident and inextricably linked together - as we push to improve the education, financial stability and health of our community continues. If there are people in our community who may not have understood before the linkages between these three areas, it is clear they do now. It's hard to have one without the other.
UNITED is the WAY.
Board member profile: Chair, Steve Polston

Welcome, Steve Polston of AstenJohnson, who will continue the great work of Fleetwood Hassell of The Bank of South Carolina.

Steve and Susan Polston have been supporters of Trident United Way for 10 years. In addition to his philanthropic support, Steve has also served in various volunteer capacities, including the Audit and Executive Committees.
He currently serves as AstenJohnson's President of Nonwovens and has been with the company since 2010.
We are grateful to the diverse group of leaders who give of their time and insights to make Trident United Way and our community a better place for all. Click here to see who serves on our board.
Remembering Bill Hall, Sr.

The difficult times of the past few months stung a little more when we learned of the passing of a dear friend to Trident United Way, Bill Hall. Bill and Jeanne Hall founded Hall Management Group and Bill was known as a legend in national hospitality circles.

He was a proud Trident United Way supporter. Please click here to learn more about the man behind the legacy and why supporting our community was vital to him.
Trident United Way Day of Caring is the largest single day of community service in the region.
We match nonprofit agencies and schools with volunteer teams that help advance their mission and build capacity — all while fostering community engagement. The day is a catalyst for year-round volunteer engagement as teams see the impact they can make in one day when they build partnerships within the community.
We are excited to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of Trident United Way's Day of Caring on Friday, November 20, 2020, and we are hard at work planning a safe, socially distanced and engaging day. Click here for more on how you or your employer can take part!