United Way improves lives by mobilizing caring people to invest in the community where their resources are needed most.
In addition to providing much-needed funding to a variety of health & human service agencies in Greater Fall River, we also provide direct services to the area through our Community Service Division. The core service in this division has always been Infoline, providing information and referral services to many individuals through our local telephone number 508-674-1100.
Now, with the growth and visibility of MASS 211, a United Way-sponsored, state-wide I&R initiative, local residents simply need to dial 211 on their telephone, accessing a broad range of information and services, 24 hours a day, with a more widespread network of health & human services agencies and many other organizations.
In 2014, our United Way will, once again, be actively promoting Familywize, which is a national program offering prescription discount cards.
One service that is always active is our Traveler’s Aid Program. Individuals stranded in our community and referred to us by a United Way agency are issued a one-time-only voucher for a bus ticket to return home. The United Way staff continued its active involvement in our community in 2013 serving on many boards and committees, including the Chamber of Commerce, Little League Baseball, the Mayor’s Task Force To End Homelessness in Fall River, and the SMILES mentoring program, among others. We are much more than just a fundraising organization and we are proud of the performance of our Community Service Division.
Hunger & Homelessness
United Way continues its special commitment to the families and elderly in our community who are hungry and need shelter. In 2013, our Board of Directors awarded $37,000 in special grants to 12 local organizations to help support their efforts in feeding the hungry. $12,000 of the total funding was made available through a special grant from BayCoast Bank. Agencies that received funding last year included: Greater Fall River Community Soup Kitchen, Bristol County Veterans’ Association, Bristol Elder Services, Greater Fall River Community Food Pantry, Annelle Delorme-Hagerman Food Pantry, Salvation Army, Citizens For Citizens, People, Inc., and the First Step Inn. Also, $2,000 was awarded to the United Way of Greater New Bedford to be used by the Hunger Commission for support in our community. This special funding program, which began in 2001 to address the “needs of the hungry and homeless,” has distributed a total of $268,250 to local service providers.
We are also active in the Fall River Task Force on Homelessness. The task force is focused on a Ten Year Plan To End Chronic Homelessness in Fall River.
Our United Way anticipates continuing to play a significant role in our community during 2014-2015 in reaching out to organizations serving those in need of a food basket, a meal or shelter.
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