United Way of Tucson has distributed
$350,000 to local agencies to-date
with more funds on the way!
United For Southern Arizona
COVID-19 Fund Updates
Your United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona is excited to share weekly updates related to our United for Southern Arizona COVID-19 Fund . Funds raised are distributed to partner agencies and go directly to helping local individuals and families in our community during this critical time of need. It is only through your generosity that we are able to create a positive impact in the lives of others. Thank you for making this possible! Read on below for individual stories of impact, volunteer opportunities and other important updates.
Partner Agencies:
Community Stories
Thanks to the generous support of our funders and donors like you, United Way of Tucson has been able to help individuals and families in conjunction with our partner organizations. Below you will read the stories of these individuals and how they are being directly affected during this COVID-19 crisis.
Housing Assistance
From Old Pueblo Community Services: “Frank* has successfully completed our Reentry Program and addressed his substance use issues. While completing an 18-month sentence for a nonviolent crime, his children were placed in DCS custody due to the mother's own actions and behaviors. Frank has worked very hard to gain custody of his children, and DCS has determined that he has met all the requirements to be reunified with them. However, he is required to have suitable housing for his children as a condition for reunification. This support will help Frank cover his security deposit and utility hook-up fees to prepare his home and give him the opportunity to be back with his children.  Frank has also obtained a Peer Support Certification and hopes to help other dads that may find themselves in the situation he has been.”
The COVID-19 Fund has gone directly towards helping supply our partner agencies with housing and rental assistance to be distributed to the individuals and families most in need, including providing assistance for Frank and his children above.
Family Assistance
From Pima Council on Aging: Barbara*is a disabled 51-year-old single mother of two boys who have their own health concerns. Her older son is adopted, and while he is a young adult, he has the cognitive level of someone much younger and mental illness diagnoses. Barbara’s younger son has autism and has been a student in the Tucson Unified School District throughout much of his education, consistently eligible for the free breakfast and lunch program. Most recently, her younger son was in a charter school, where he also received free breakfast and lunch, though Barbara reports that this was the first school year that she did not have to fill out paperwork to receive these meals. Due to some behavioral challenges, Barbara had to take her younger son out of school a few days before Spring Break began. He has since enrolled in the Autism Academy for online classes.

Barbara had heard of support provided by the government to families during this time who qualified for free and reduced lunches and attempted to apply for it. Her income is just dollars above the qualification cut off for food stamps. Moreover, because she was not asked to fill out the paperwork for the free and reduced lunch this year and the child was not attending school at the time schools were shut down for the pandemic, she has been told she does not qualify for the extra assistance. She is already barely making it financially, and now, having to provide two extra meals, five days a week has added a significant financial burden for her and her family.

These funds will support Barbara to provide meals for the family during this time.”
Food Assistance
From Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona: “On our first day of distribution at Kino Sport Complex, cars were already lined up already at 3:30am - and they just kept coming. Three hours later, the line snaked through the huge parking lot and stretched down Kino to the freeway – probably a mile long.But our team got to work right away. The shaded parking provided relief to all of us, and by opening four distribution lines, we were able to push through that long line in an hour after we opened. We had staff members setting up and taking down the entire parking lot area for each distribution and Arizona National Guard service members distributing the food. We even had Pima County librarians staffing one entire line for check-in - they were happy to be working, since libraries closed in March. In addition to non-perishables, we were able to distribute a produce box with green beans, tomatoes, etc. that National Guard service members and production crew staff had worked quickly to assemble. By 8am things had cleared up and you could drive right in. It was such an amazing demonstration of teamwork and a powerful example of rising up together to meet a crushing need.
People who received food were incredibly appreciative and said so: a thank you card from someone we helped read: ‘As a disabled individual I was worried to go into a store to shop because of today’s uncertainty in the world. I was so scared. You helped me with this. Thank you. I am so grateful for you.’ Support from United Way helped make this food distribution possible.”
It is only by coming together as a community that we can survive during this difficult time of job loss, health concerns and uncertainty. Your United Way, the Community Food Bank, Volunteers, Librarians, the National Guard all came together to demonstrate that United we are stronger than any single entity alone. We are proud to be a part of a community that tirelessly continues to help create a thriving Southern Arizona.
Volunteer Updates:

This week we provided:

  • 15 Volunteers to deliver Food Boxes for Higher Ground
  • 5 volunteers for Food Box Packing with Gideon Full Gospel Baptist Church (Boxes are for a monthly distribution)
COVID-19 Basic Needs Drive

Youth on the Rise and the United youth Leadership Council with assistance from Young Leaders United - are coordinating a COVID-19 Drive for youth recently released from the Juvenille Detention Center as well as other Opportunity Youth in Southern Arizona, 16 – 24 year olds who are not enrolled in school and aren't working. Donations can be dropped off at Goodwill Metro at 300 N 4th Ave on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursdays from 10:30am to 4pm. For more information, email Meredith at [email protected]
We need your help to keep
Southern Arizona United
Your support right now is crucial to alleviate the financial hardship many are facing today. For nearly 100 years, your United Way of Southern Arizona has been fulfilling our mission of mobilizing the community to solve real-time problems. Your gift to this fund will quickly support a child, family, or older person with what is essential right now. Together, we can help each other and our community emerge stronger than ever. With our non-profit partners, United Way will continue to deliver emergency services and resources for individuals and families who need help today.  When we LIVE UNITED, we can achieve more than any single entity can alone. When you GIVE UNITED, you can change lives.