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Our United Way Targets Important Issues

The following is a letter to the editor which appeared in the July 28, 2012 issue ofThe Daily Progress.

United Way targets important issues

Thanks to The Daily Progress for the June 4 article about our United Way’s emphasis on strategic philanthropy(“UnitedWay adjusts funding”). We recently undertook an extensive strategic planning process, resulting in a refocusing of our efforts toward the themes of self-sufficiency, school readiness and community health. By focusing our resources on specific, targeted issues, we can have the greatest return on investment for our donors who share our concerns, and the greatest impact in changing lives.

From our board’s year-long investigation,we adopted priorities in each impact area where we believe we can have lasting, significant impact: job training; addressing barriers to employment; increasing financial education and literacy; increasing home visiting services for young children to ensure school readiness; improving prenatal care and the health of babies; promoting physical activity, improving nutrition and obesity prevention; and increasing access to preventative and basic health care.

We will seek innovative approaches to address these critical issues and will bring funding, advocacy and volunteerism to create better outcomes.

Our region is fortunate to have an abundance of tremendous nonprofit organizations. No single organization can meet every need in our community. Through partnerships with many of these great organizations and by encouraging collaboration on similar programs, our new approach will enable us to focus our efforts in areas of significant challenge and create lasting, life-changing differences for our citizens.

We are energized by this new direction; it is our hope that the public will join with us through their financial support and volunteer efforts. Together, we can have a tremendous impact.

DANIEL GOODALL, Albemarle County

Daniel Goodall is a member of the United Way executive committee. This letter also carried the names of Blair Kelly, chairman of the United Way Board of Directors, and executive committee P.K. Kamath, Liza Borches, Margery Daniel, Peter Brooks, Brad Groff, Alison DeTuncq, Ray Mishler, Jim Kennan, Dick Brownlee, Eric Johnson, Brad Ramsey, Mike Chinn, Deborah van Eersel and Mark Giles.

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