United Way
of Central Virginia

Live United - United Way

EducationEducation Readiness Initiative Launched at Community Summit

On May 6, 2014 over 80 Central Virginia community leaders convened to learn more about United Way of Central Virginia's first Community Impact focus area, Education Readiness. Through this initiative, the organization seeks to ensure that area children enter school ready to learn and have the tools necessary to succeed in their first academic years.


Keynote speaker Dr. Ralph Smith, Senior Vice President of the Annie E. Casey Foundation and Managing Director of the Campaign for Grade Level Reading, highlighted the vital role early education plays in a community's economic and sociological outlook. Research confirms that children who are academically and socially successful in their early years are more likely to be successful throughout their lives. In addition, communities who invest in early education are rewarded with returns such as reduced criminal activity and lower costs associated with remedial education and incarceration.


United Way of Central Virginia's Community Impact Leadership Committee explained the process that ultimately led to choosing Education Readiness as the organization's first focus area. Over the last several years, the United Way of Central Virginia board has come to the conclusion that the organization is in a unique position to bring together community resources to address those few key areas with the most potential to create lasting change in Central Virginia. Education Readiness was chosen as the first focus area because of the proven impact early childhood education makes on a community's long-term viability and growth.  


United Way of Central Virginia has set its long-term goal to increase third grade reading proficiency to 90% by the year 2025. Targeted inputs and desired outcomes are being determined, and a request for proposal will be sent to potential partners in the coming months.   


To further illustrate the need for Education Readiness in Central Virginia, the group debuted the video Meet Jamie: 

The Statisticks of Central Virginia
The Statisticks of Central Virginia
DOCWow, What a Day of Caring!
We say THANK YOU to everyone for working together to help United Way of Central Virginia partner agencies and other non-profits in Central Virginia who provide services for those in need!

The purpose of Day of Caring is to bring together community-minded volunteers under a common mission of creating positive change in the lives of children, families, and seniors in the Central Virginia community.

This year, 153 projects were submitted by 42 non-profit agencies. One hundred thirty-five projects were taken by 34 companies totaling 1,246 volunteers participating on May 21st... for a grand total of 5,072 volunteer hours!! It is estimated that the collective value of these work hours adds up close to $126,800! That's AMAZING!!!

Courtesy of 3rd Dimension Productions, skydivers jumped from a plane and landed in the City Stadium ball field during lunchtime. The jumpers sported our LIVE UNITED t-shirts as they parachuted to the ground. Bobby Page even came flying in like a superhero with our LIVE UNITED banner proudly waving behind him!


BB&T - for being our major & loyal sponsor for over 10 years and making it possible to provide the t-shirt for free this year

Sodexo - for providing lunch for 1,400 volunteers

Synergy Marketing & Design - for donating the 3-color
design for this year's t-shirt

Valtim - for sponsoring our skydivers for the lunchtime entertainment

City of Lynchburg - for once again donating use of the stadium

Lynchburg Hillcats - for continuously providing us with staff and support at the stadium during this event

Pepsi - for donating soda beverages for the lunch

Frito Lay - for donating chips for the lunch at the stadium

Georgia Pacific-Big Island - for donating all the bottled water provided at the project sites

Check out our Facebook page to see more Day of Caring pictures!

HarrisGolf11th Annual Harris Corporation Golf Tournament
Harris Corporation employees came out in full force on Tuesday, May 13th at Ivy Hill Golf Course to show their support for United Way of Central Virginia. It was a beautiful, sunny day and a great time was had by all. 

United Way of Central Virginia depends on our community to help us "LIVE UNITED" and make a positive difference in Central Virginia.  The Golf Tournament was one of many special events Harris Corporation employees hosted to show support.


Special thanks to the many sponsors:  Buffalo Wild Wings, Texas Road House, Blue Ridge Ice, Enterprise Car Rentals, Flowers Bakery, and the beautiful Ivy Hill Golf Course for hosting the event again this year and everything they do to make this event successful.


The Winning Teams

1st Place: Young, Liu, Walthall, Perdieu

2nd Place: Smith, Roark, Makavsky, Casler

3rd Place: Jamerson, Jamerson, Reynolds, Dunnam

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WLCWomen's Leadership Council 
WLC members united by a shared passion: advancing the Common Good in our communities through leadership, philanthropy, and community activism. Please join us in providing programs to support women and children in Central Virginia. Since its formation in 2009, the WLC has distributed over $181,000 to programs targeting early childhood literacy. Won't you join a dynamic group of women and help us continue our work? FY 2015 memberships are now available. Yearly gifts are:
  • Age 40 and over - $1,000
  • Age 39 and under - $500
Renewal letters will be sent. Not a member? Call Joan Phelps (434-846-8467) or email her at joan.phelps@unitedwaycv.org for more information.

More WLC News
In December 2013, WLC awarded funds to Smart Beginnings to support its efforts to promote school readiness and early literacy. Smart Beginnings works toward its goal that every child enters school ready to succeed by working with preschools and child care centers to improve quality, offering professional development and through family support and education.One method of helping families is through the implementation of The Incredible Years parent education program.

The Incredible Years parent program includes at least 14 group sessions, and covers many aspects of parenting, including the importance of parents playing with their children.The first program has just been completed at Miriam's House.

Comments from participants:

"I really love the interaction with the other moms, and hearing other information.I can learn from them."


"I feel like I am progressing weekly!"


"Love this group. At first I was like GROSS, but now it's awesome"


"I really enjoy the new skills I learn from the videos as well as from the other moms"


"I am learning a lot!"


The Incredible Years offers new strategies to parents who are struggling with behavioral problems, or just don't understand how important the first five years of life are in terms of brain development and future success.The first group graduates this week, and the next group is set to begin in early June at the Domestic Violence Prevention Shelter. 


Denita Lewis and Janet Jones facilitated the group at Miriam's House. Janet, a retired high school counselor who has worked with students and their families, states that The Incredible Years is the best program for parents she has ever encountered. Denita, whose experience includes facilitating Women's Empowerment groups and community health education, agrees with Janet's remarks adding, "This program is structured so that participants can easily grasp the concepts of each weekly session, and along with role playing, makes for easy family implementation."
YLSYoung Leaders (YLS)

United Way recognizes that the leaders of tomorrow start today.  People who not only talk about ideas but also shape those ideas into reality--who look around and see ways to improve the lives of others.

Are you between the ages of 18-40? Are you interested in joining like-minded individuals to make the greatest impact in our community? Do you like to volunteer, have fun and make a difference?


Then the YLS is for you!  


What is required?

  • Buy a $5 LIVE UNITED tee and promise to wear it often.
  • Volunteer your time at a variety of events, fundraisers and awareness-raisers in our community.
  • Bring your ideas, skills, input and know-how to monthly meetings.
  • Tell a friend!

What are the benefits?

  • You'll have fun.
  • You'll make new friends.
  • You'll make a difference.
  • You'll be rewarded:
    • annual awards given
    • recognition to your workplace/supervisor  

How do I get involved?

Attend monthly meetings at UWCV at 6pm
(1010 Miller Park Square)

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This   Live United
moment brought to you by
Mark Your

More photos from the Harris Golf Tournament


Harris Employees Know How to LIVE UNITED!

United Way Initiatives

Need a referral? Have a question about services in your area? Call 2-1-1. It's the non-emergency answer to 9-1-1. 

Get Connected is an easy-to-use web-based platform that matches the right donors, advocates, and volunteers with the right opportunities in our neighborhoods. Use Get Connected to find ways to give your unused materials and household items to agencies in need of donations, advocate for causes that require your passionate voice, and volunteer your time in ways that make a real difference.
Sign up HERE.

smart beginnings
Is your passion working to improve the quality of care and education for children from birth until kindergarten? That's the Smart Beginnings mission, and they do it well!


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