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United Ways Advocate on Behalf of Pennsylvanians

United Way of Pennsylvania hosted a Hill Day on Tuesday, March 21st to advocate for issues of importance to the United Way network.   We had 11 PA United Ways and 6 United Way of Pennsylvania board members in town to help us advocate.  It was a great day, with productive meetings and a lot of United Way support.  

While in town, our members took some time to discuss PA 2-1-1, a hotline to connect those in need with health and human services information and referrals.  PA United Ways have been working for many years to bring awareness to the 2-1-1 service and its ability to work hand-in-hand with local, county, and state governments to make sure every Pennsylvanian has the help they need.  This help can be anything from rent or utility assistance to tax preparation help, and even connecting those who are looking to volunteer to programs happening in their local area.  United Way of PA is seeking $1.5 million in this year's state budget to ensure 2-1-1 has the ability to connect with all Pennsylvanians and be a partner for health and human services needs.  

Additionally, United Way advocates fought for the Governor's proposed pre-k and head state funding of $75 million. United Ways have done significant work in early childhood education and know those dollars can make a huge impact to our children.  Getting your child kindergarten ready by enrolling them in pre-k and head start programs has a significant impact on how well the child will do throughout school.  Pre-k investments have shown decreases in the need for school aids, the number of school dropouts, and the crime rate among children and young adults.  

Our United Way advocates brought passion to our Hill Day, just like they do in their communities every day.  We are so proud of our members and the work they are doing to bring Pennsylvania forward.  

Take a look at the House Resolution and Senate Resolution commemorating United Ways.  
United Way Programs Make a Difference 

United Way of Franklin County's Stepping Forward Works Initiative 

"I worked 3 jobs, couldn't pay my bills, and was called a moocher until I found Stepping Forward Works".

Stepping Forward Works is a United Way of Franklin County initiative serving individuals and industry in  the community.  This cost free service is offered to individuals who struggle in poverty or are on the brink of poverty because they lack skills, coaching, and training to improve their employment opportunities.  The program also serves industries in the county who need dependable employees with employability skills who will stay on the job. 

Candidates are first placed in support programs as needed to best prepare them for engagement in a training environment that mimics workplace conditions and expectations.  Individuals are drug tested, partnered with a mentor, coached in soft skills, trained in problem solving, critical thinking and financial literacy, coached with resume' building and interview skills, and guided through appropriate communication skills with each action they take during their training day. Candidate trainers include certified instructors, HR directors, HR generalists, CEO's, nurse supervisors, business owners, finance specialists, and managers.   This helps to reinforce the daily message that everyone they meet is a potential employer.
 
Once individuals complete the program, they interview with partner employers who have agreed to hire program approved candidates for jobs ranging from warehouse and construction to forklift and nurse aide positions.  Candidates are followed for one full year and counseled as needed to meet job demands or personal struggles.

A few program statistics:
-  62 candidates have enrolled in our program
-  11% are veterans
-  56% have a criminal background
-  100% of our candidates have identified a barrier or pattern of behavior that has negatively impacted their ability to stay employed
-  14% moved from debt to having a savings account
-  20% have moved into management and supervisory rolls
-  75% of candidates have completed an industry recognized certification
- 83% of candidates have remained employed after 1 year    

Please click here to learn more about Stepping Forward Works. 
PA UNITED WAYS IN THE NEWS

Check out what United Ways are doing throughout PA! 

Centre County United Way Launches 'Raising Readers' Program:


Rep. Lynda Culver Recognized for Her Dedication to Early Childhood Education: 


United Way of Erie Book Drive Aims to Curb Summer Slide for Kids: 

UNITED WAYS ACROSS THE NATION

Check out some of the great work United Ways are doing across the country! 

Connecticut 2-1-1 Receives more than 500 Calls During Snowstorm:
 


United Way of North Central Massachusetts' Youth Venture Students Inspire Community Leaders: 

UPCOMING UNITED WAY 
EVENTS

UWP Annual Conference  
Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort 
June 21-23

Check Out What Your Local United Way has Going On
LIVING UNITED IN PENNSYLVANIA
United Way of Pennsylvania (UWP) is a state association representing our 52 member United Way's across the Commonwealth. 

UWP's mission is to assist and champion the efforts of local United Ways in advancing the common good

Primarily UWP's work consists of government relations work on the policy issues affecting PA's communities in the areas of health, education, and financial stability.  In addition, UWP works with our local United Way members to support their efforts and offer support to their mission.  


Visit United Way of Pennsylvania's website
to learn more about how local United Ways are working to advance the common good

For any inquiries please contact us
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