Impact and Programs
In the previous year, our impact is demonstrated through both our community allocation process, which granted funds to 36 local programs, as well as the programs being carried out under our United Way, and programs that we directly collaborate on with local partners. Last year, we granted funds to 36 local human service programs. One program carried out directly under our United Way's umbrella, Imagination Library, reached 1782 local children under the age of five, distributing 19,661 books to those children with tips for parents on how to use the book to engage their child. Through the Operation Sandwich program, we served 3874 meals to children in the Brainerd School District over summer vacation, helping to bridge the gap of meals the children receive through the free and reduced lunch program during the school year. The same program utilized a total of 1,746 volunteer hours last summer alone, equating to a financial value of over $43,000. Get Connected volunteer hub is another program under our United Way. During initial roll out of the program last year, 20 different nonprofit partners registered on the site, setting up profiles to promote volunteer needs at their organizations as well as having access to data through the site regarding total number of volunteer hours utilized, which is often helpful when seeking out funding opportunities.
Our current goals are multifaceted. First, we aim to increase our annual fundraising campaign as well as our reach in the community through launching additional workplace giving campaigns. Additionally, we are striving to further promote Get Connected to both area nonprofits as well as potential volunteers to increase volunteer engagement as well as fostering a sense of community with individual volunteers. Our early literacy goals center on Imagination Library, so far this year increasing our reach to nearly 1900 local children (37% of eligible children in our service area). In addition to reaching the children through books, we also aim to increase our advocacy work with early literacy by providing an increased number of presentations within our community on the topic.
Community or Constituency Served
Crow Wing and Southern Cass Counties
Geographic Area Served
Crow Wing & Southern Cass Counties