Portland, Oregon – United Way of the Columbia‐Willamette (UWCW) welcomes Heather Guthrie as the new Chair of the Board of Directors. Heather has served on the Board for five years, including as Vice Chair last year, and her dedication to our region’s kids and families propelled her nomination for Chair to the top.
This year marked the 25th anniversary recognizing October 17 as the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. With this year's theme centering on human rights, dignity and inclusion, there was an emphasis on the way in which people living in poverty are "disproportionately affected by many human rights violations."1 Under a lens of equity, this year's End Poverty Day was advocating bringing awareness to poverty in our own communities, encouraging everyone to come together to play a part.
At United Way of the Columbia-Willamette, we’ve been bringing our community together to do good for nearly 100 years. We work every day with hundreds of organizations to make sure we have communities and schools that welcome and support all kids and families in our region – especially the kids and families facing the steepest barriers: immigrants and refugees, families of color and low-income families.
Last Spring, during a weekend event at a local high school, students got together to present their start-up ideas. However, after the event ended and kids wrapped up their presentations, one team quickly went from idea to nonprofit, all with the help of the United Way Catalyst Grant.
The Parent Accountability Council (PAC) is an important part of our Early Learning Multnomah initiative. Through PAC parents share their voice and help guide our early learning investments. This year marks PAC's 4th anniversary serving our community. Take a look at all of their incredible achievements.
Just over a year ago, I joined United Way’s Early Learning Multnomah team to help grow membership on the Parent Accountability Council. During this time I’ve witnessed the power parents can have in improving early learning systems and why accountability is key.
It wasn’t that long ago that Lam Hoang felt isolated and alone, having moved to Multnomah County from her home in Vietnam. Since then she's emerged as a parent leader in the community, sharing her experience and voice to ensure children of color have every opportunity to thrive in kindergarten and beyond.
Forced to leave her home in Ethiopia for fear of persecution, Danait landed in Portland four years ago as part of the refugee resettlement program. She left her home country including her family and friends, without being able to bring any personal possessions or even prepare herself for life in a new culture.
Two years ago, Stephanie, a single parent, found herself in an unimaginable situation. Despite having a full time job Stephanie couldn’t afford rent in Washington County, and she and her six year old daughter, Teja, became homeless.
Leading national organizations have selected Multnomah County as one of 29 communities across the country to work together to focus on child development from birth to age 3. United Way will serve as the community lead through its strategic initiative, Early Learning Multnomah.
April is National Volunteer Month! Hands On Greater Portland, United Way's volunteer program, is lucky to claim the support of thousands of dedicated local volunteers. We sat down with longtime volunteer leader Larry Kotan to hear about what motivates him to give back.