City Manager’s Mentoring Initiative on Target

Greensboro, NC (March 6, 2020) – City Manager David Parrish is pleased to announce 100 Males Mentoring is on track to achieve its goal of pairing 100 local boys with 100 male mentors, in 100 days. Parrish’s collaborative effort between the City of Greensboro and United Way of Greater Greensboro’s Mentoring Matters Initiative launched on January 16.

The midway point of Parrish’s call to action, shows more than 50 men have answered the call to mentor.

“I am thrilled by the number of men who are investing in our youth. With just under 50 days left in this campaign, I am confident we will exceed the goal,” said City Manager David Parrish.

100 Males Mentoring aims to increase the number of male mentors and improve the lives of young men most impacted by violent crime.

Research shows mentors can play a powerful role in providing youth with the tools to make responsible choices, attend and excel in school, and reduce or avoid risky behavior, such as gang activity or drug use.

“There are children right here in Greensboro waiting for you to listen to them, share meaningful experiences with them, and to simply befriend them. Men in our community can change lives by becoming a mentor,” said Michelle Gethers-Clark, President and CEO of United Way of Greater Greensboro.

To sign up to mentor, visit unitedwaygso.org/mentoring-matters.

United Way Seeks Public Input in Community Survey

Greensboro, NC (March 2, 2020) – Residents of greater Greensboro are invited to provide critical input about local social issues through a community survey being conducted by United Way of Greater Greensboro. 

Beginning today and ending Friday, March 13, an online community survey is open to the public. Visit www.unitedwaygso.org/survey and click on the link to complete the short survey about needs and issues facing local residents, as well as how United Way of Greater Greensboro can better address these needs and issues. 

“For 98 years, United Way has depended on the voice of our community to guide our work. We are once again seeking that collective voice with this survey. Our goal of ending local poverty requires input from all walks in life. Please take a few minutes to complete our survey and pass the link along to ask friends and family members to take the survey,” said Michelle Gethers-Clark, President & CEO of United Way of Greater Greensboro.

To ensure confidentiality, Perspectives Consulting Group will be collecting and tabulating all results and we want your honest feedback.

City of Greensboro and United Way Launch Annual Plus One Campaign

​Greensboro, NC (February 28, 2020) – The City of Greensboro and United Way of Greater Greensboro are pleased invite local businesses and youth to participate in this year’s annual Plus One summer employment campaign. Plus One seeks to create and identify summer employment opportunities for greater Greensboro youth ages 16-24.

In 2019, 17 employers hired 57 greater Greensboro youth for summer employment. The City of Greensboro and United Way are expanding the campaign to engage more employers and youth this year.

“Supporting Plus One helps to develop the next generation of our local workforce and economy. We want this campaign to surpass last year’s numbers. When employers partner with us it helps youth to discover employment opportunities, experiential learning, and invaluable job skills,” said Mayor Nancy Vaughan.

Greater Greensboro youth ages 16-24 are invited to attend a hiring event on April 7, 2020, from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. at Lindley Community Recreation Center (2907 Springwood Drive, Greensboro). Attendees must register by Friday, April 3, 2020, at unitedwaygso.org/plusone.

Research shows there are major benefits of summer employment including gaining work experience and supplementing family income. Summer employment for youth also has positive educational implications. Having a summer job can increase teens’ time-management skills, self-confidence and sense of responsibility, all of which help them succeed in life and in school.

“As an adolescent, I could not wait until I was old enough to get my workers permit so that I could work during the summer. I looked forward to buying my own clothes, going to the movies, skating rink and most of all having my own bank account. What I know now, is that my early work experiences provided me with a level of independence and pride that has been integral to my development into my adulthood. I am excited that we are calling on our community to join this Campaign to be a champion for youth in greater Greensboro,” said Traci McLemore, Senior Manager of Community Impact Initiatives at United Way of Greater Greensboro.

Employers are encouraged to join the support the Plus One campaign by adding at least one youth employment opportunity to their workforce this summer. Employers may submit summer job opportunities now through March 31, 2020.

Plus One employers will agree to the following requirements:

  • Hire a young person between ages of 16-24
  • Provide a wage of at least $8.00
  • Offer at least 20 hours/week
  • Position duration: at least 8-10 weeks (starting and ending on or about June thru August)

Employers are asked to submit their Plus One Summer Youth Employment Opportunity online using the Employer Form at unitedwaygso.org/plusone. Employers can also call United Way and request to be registered under the Plus One initiative.

Plus One youth employment opportunities for greater Greensboro youth will be posted on the United Way website and promoted throughout the community to reach youth most in need of meaningful summer work experiences. The website will list the company/business name; listing of positions with job descriptions; preferred skills; and contact information.

Three United Way Partners Receive Statewide Spirit Awards

Greensboro, NC (February 21, 2020) – Three local United Way of Greater Greensboro partners, Vandalia Elementary School, M.G. Newell Corporation, and Guilford County Schools were honored with Spirit of North Carolina Awards at United Way of North Carolina’s annual award luncheon on February 19.

“This year’s winners made their campaigns fun and engaging while focusing on communicating United Way’s goal of ending poverty. These companies and employees truly understand how their support makes an impact in our community. We are grateful for their partnership and all they do for greater Greensboro,” said Julia Thomas, Campaign Director, United Way of Greater Greensboro.

United Way of North Carolina also recognized BB&T now TRUIST for “Building a Better Future” and championing United Way’s efforts across multiple communities for many years. Guilford County Schools was additionally honored with a Best Practice Showcase award.

Leading beyond the traditional fundraising campaign, these winners created opportunities to educate employees on community needs, led by those at the top of the organizational chart; motivated campaign participants to give by exposing them to real stories of need; and provided volunteer opportunities so that donors could offer their knowledge and their hands to serve their community.

On a yearly basis, United Way of North Carolina recognizes organizations who have succeeded in raising funds to support their community and have dedicated themselves to being part of the long-term solution to build stronger communities. A panel of 25 judges representing United Way organizations across North Carolina reviewed more than 40 nominations to select this year’s winners.

Misty Copeland Headlining United Way of Greater Greensboro’s Community Speaker Series March 25

Greensboro, NC (February 14, 2020) – United Way of Greater Greensboro is welcoming Misty Copeland, renowned star who made history as the first African American Female Principal Dancer with the prestigious American Ballet Theatre, as this year’s featured speaker for the 2020 Community Speaker Series at Piedmont Hall on Wednesday, March 25. The media is invited to attend.

At the event, local WFMY News 2 Anchor, Taheshah Moise will lead Copeland through a question and answer format that will treat the audience to an intimate look into Copeland’s life experiences and passion for giving back.

Sponsorships are still available, and tickets are on sale and can be purchased at www.UnitedWayGSO.org/SpeakerSeries.

Born in Kansas City, Missouri and raised in San Pedro, California, Misty Copeland began her ballet studies at the late age of thirteen. At fifteen, she won first place in the Music Center Spotlight Awards. Misty joined ABT’s Studio Company in September 2000, joined American Ballet Theatre as a member of the corps de ballet in April 2001, and in August 2007 became the company’s second African American female Soloist and the first in two decades. In June 2015, Misty was promoted to principal dancer, making her the first African American woman to ever be promoted to the position in the company’s 75-year history.

Copeland has been featured in numerous publications and television programs, including CBS Sunday Morning, 60 Minutes, The Today Show, This Week with George Stephanopoulos, MSNBC’s Melissa Harris Perry, Vogue, Essence, Ebony, and People Magazine. She was honored with an induction into the Boys & Girls Club National Hall of Fame in May 2012 and received the “Breakthrough Award” from the Council of Urban Professionals in April 2012. She was named National Youth of the Year Ambassador for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America in June 2013. She received the Young, Gifted & Black honor at the 2013 Black Girls Rock! Awards.

Copeland’s passion is giving back. She has worked with many charitable organizations and is dedicated to giving of her time to work with and mentor young girls and boys. In 2014, President Obama appointed Misty to the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition.

Misty is the author of the New York Times Bestselling memoir, Life in Motion, co-written with award-winning journalist and author Charisse Jones, published March 2014. She has a picture book titled Firebird in collaboration with award-winning illustrator and author Christopher Myers, published September 2014. She received an honorary doctorate from the University of Hartford in November 2014 for her contributions to classical ballet and helping to diversify the art form.

United Way of Greater Greensboro’s Community Speaker Series convenes people from across our community to learn together, connect with one another, and be inspired while supporting the work of United Way. United Way’s Women United is hosting this year’s event. 

This event made possible by the following sponsors:

Gold
Compass Financial Partners 

Silver
American National Bank & Trust Company
Mae Douglas

Bronze
Bank of America
Enterprise Holdings
Fox Rothschild, LLP
Greensboro Housing Authority
ITG Brands
North Carolina A&T State University
Robyn N. Sanders MD
Cheryl T. Smith
Susan Wiseman

Youth Sponsor
Randall Kaplan and Kathy Manning
Lovelle and Alan Overbey
SapHire Solutions
Touching Lives Foundation

In-Kind Sponsors
Greensboro Coliseum Complex 
The Fresh Market

Special Thanks
Royal Expressions Contemporary Ballet

United Way Celebrates 211 Day, Critical Community Service

Greensboro, NC (February 11, 2020) – Today is National 211 Day. By simply dialing 211, people who need help can be connected to multiple support services. Caring operators are ready to help 24/7/365. The service is free, confidential and available in most languages. Local resources are also available by visiting www.NC211.org.

In 2019, 211 received 4,363 calls from greater Greensboro residents. Individuals and families with inadequate income have difficulties in meeting basic costs, including struggling to pay for food, accommodation, clothing, education, health care, utilities, transport, recreation and trying to balance competing demands.

Of the 4,363 calls received from greater Greensboro residents, housing and shelter, utilities, health care, employment and income, and food were the top requests. Other requests included mental health and addiction, clothing and household needs, child care and parenting, legal and public safety services, transportation and education.

211 in Action:

Aaron is a single father with three little girls. After falling on hard times and going from two household incomes to one, he called his children’s school social worker for help. The school social worker connected Aaron with United Ways’s 211 service to identify some resources that might help get him back on his feet. Things were looking up for his family until Aaron lost his job. Aaron was able to find a new job within a month, but had fallen behind once again with bills piling up and debt building.

After receiving an eviction notice for the day before Thanksgiving, Aaron reached out to his children’s school social worker who reconnected him again with 211.  It turned out that $132 was the only thing standing between Aaron and his three little girls being homeless on Thanksgiving.

The 211 team scrambled. They had conversations with the school social worker, the landlord, and Aaron -gathering documents and straightening out the timeline. Within hours, a promissory note was sent to the landlord and the eviction was stopped. Aaron could not have been more grateful, repeatedly saying, “Thank you, thank you, thank you. You don’t know what this means.”  Aaron and his three little girls were together, at home for Thanksgiving.

Ben & Jerry’s, United Way Collaborating to ‘Shake Down Poverty’

Greensboro, NC (January 24, 2020) – Starting February 1, 2020, Ben & Jerry’s at Friendly Center will donate $1 from the sale of a featured milkshake to support United Way of Greater Greensboro’s efforts to end poverty as part of a new “Shake Down Poverty” program.

For the next year, Ben & Jerry’s will feature a Shake Down Poverty milkshake on their local menu. The program will kick off with a Strawberry and Chocolate Fudge Brownie milkshake, called “Love GSO”. The featured milkshake will change quarterly. Substitutions can be made to accommodate different dietary needs including swapping for non-dairy milks.

“After partnering with United Way for our annual Free Cone Day the last few years, we wanted to deepen our partnership. We’re excited to help them raise awareness and revenue in new ways. We fully support their efforts to end poverty and are impressed with the work they do,” said Antonio McBroom, Chief Euphoria Officer of Ben & Jerry’s Catering & Special Events.

“We’re always looking for innovative ways to reach people with our message of ending poverty. Shake Down Poverty will allow us to reach people throughout the year and all proceeds will help local children and families. Ben & Jerry’s has consistently shown they care about the community and we’re proud to partner with them.” said Michael Cottingham, Vice President, Marketing and Communication of United Way of Greater Greensboro.

To download the flyer, visit unitedwaygso.org/ShakeDownPoverty.

Former Board Member Receives Athena Award

Chamber Honors Mae Douglas

Mae Douglas, immediate past United Way of Greater Greensboro board member and chair of the Community Impact and Investment Committee, who was honored with the Athena Award at the Greensboro Chamber of Commerce annual luncheon.

Mae, who was featured in United Way’s annual report in 2018, is a community leader, philanthropist and the former executive vice president and chief people officer at Cox Communications in Atlanta. After her retirement and relocation back to Greensboro, she has focused on community service.

In addition to serving with United Way, Mae has volunteered with the Cone Health Board of Trustees, Cone Foundation Board, UNC Greensboro Board of Trustees, Gateway Research Park, Guilford Child Development, NCCJ (National Conference for Community and Justice), YMCA, Friends of the Library at UNCG and a committee of the Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro aimed at better understanding and engaging philanthropy among African Americans.

Mae’s mission is to give people the same kinds of opportunities for success that she had. “I believe each of us can and should do our part to make life better for others,” said Mae.

United Way of Greater Greensboro CFO Named One of the 40 Most Influential African Americans Under 40 in the Piedmont

Greensboro, NC (January 17, 2020) –  United Way of Greater Greensboro Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer Brian Graham was named one of Black Business Ink magazine’s “40 Under 40 Most Influential African Americans in the Piedmont,” which honors individuals from Forsyth and Guilford counties.

According to Black Business Ink, this inaugural list of the 40 Under 40 Most Influential African Americans in the Piedmont is comprised of outstanding leaders who are confident, ambitious and achievement oriented. They help build their community, seek new challenges at work and are not afraid to question authority. Each awardee was nominated and considered by two selection committees, one in Guilford County and one in Forsyth County.

Graham joined United Way of Greater Greensboro in his role as Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer in March 2019. Graham leads United Way’s finance team and oversees all of financial and operational areas with a focus on strategic management of the organization’s resources to maximize return on investment. He is a graduate of North Carolina A&T State University and the University of Virginia. Graham has over 15 years of financial leadership in nonprofit organizations as well as 5 years of public accounting experience.

A gala honoring the award recipients will be held on February 22, 2020.

Mentoring Matters: Marcello and Jeremiah’s Story

When Marcello discovered United Way’s Mentoring Matters initiative, it didn’t take him long to decide he wanted to be a mentor.

“I know helping others through mentoring is where I’m supposed to be. Mentoring has given me the opportunity to help youth succeed in the classroom and in life,” said Marcello.

United Way of Greater Greensboro’s Mentoring Matters initiative works to increase the number of local men and women mentors and improve the effectiveness of mentoring programs in the greater Greensboro area.

Marcello was paired with Jeremiah, a student at Lincoln Academy, through SHEILD Mentor Program, a member of United Way’s Mentoring Matters initiative. When Marcello visits Jeremiah they play games, journal and learn about each other.

“My favorite thing about having a mentor is that it gives me someone to talk to. I got to meet Mr. Marcello and learn how to be open to new people and ideas,” said 11-year-old Jeremiah.

Research confirms that quality mentoring relationships have powerful positive effects on young people in a variety of personal, academic and professional situations.

According to the National Mentoring Partnership, young adults who were at-risk for falling off track but had a mentor are:

  • 55% more likely to enroll in college
  • 78% more likely to volunteer regularly
  • 90% are interested in becoming a mentor
  • And 130% more likely to hold leadership positions.

Many mentors say that the rewards they gain are as substantial as those for their mentees, and that mentoring has enabled them to:

  • Have fun
  • Achieve personal growth and learn more about themselves
  • Improve their self-esteem and feel they are making a difference
  • Gain a better understanding of other cultures and develop a greater appreciation for diversity
  • Feel more productive and have a better attitude at work
  • And enhance their relationships with their own children.

As a father of three Marcello says, “While I know Jeremiah gains a lot from our relationship, I gain a lot too. It’s taught me new skills to engage with my own children and I take those skills and techniques home,” said Marcello.

Why should you be a mentor? Jeremiah says, “It’s fun! You get to learn new things and be open minded.”

Jeremiah and Marcello are just one example of the how mentoring truly matters. Right now, there are children in our community waiting for someone like you to listen, guide and share your life experience with them. Click here to learn more about how to become a mentor.

Be sure to attend the 100 Males Mentoring event in partnership with the City of Greensboro on January 16, 2020. Click here here to learn more and RSVP.