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How to make a world of difference in your hometown Featured

10:02am EDT July 22, 2002

Low-income families. The disabled. Abused children. Children without parents. Those transitioning from welfare to work. The elderly who are frail and alone. All are beneficiaries of the time and dollars donated through the United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania by the people who make up the region's business community.

The nonprofit organization, whose theme this year has been to "make a world of difference in your hometown," has been helping local families in one form or another since 1927, when the former Welfare Fund of Pittsburgh was chartered. Twenty years ago, United Way of Allegheny County held its first joint campaign with United Way of Washington County. Today, United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania encompasses Allegheny, Washington, Greene and Beaver counties, as well as the United Way of the Mon Valley.

United Way of Allegheny County now serves 70 member agencies and is one of 1,900 local, independent United Ways across the nation.

All have the same mission: to "serve as the catalyst for measurably improving the quality of life in our community by mobilizing all citizens to contribute the human and financial resources needed to:

  • nurture children and youth;

  • strengthen families;

  • support older people;

  • promote health and wellness;

  • and increase self-sufficiency."

Our goal at SBN in teaming up with United Way is simply this: to encourage more business leaders to play an active role not only in giving, but also in hands-on participation with the vast array of local programs funded by United Way. After all, making our communities better for all people is, in the end, good business.

To get started, consider the following United Way-funded organizations:

Nurturing children and youth

Bloomfield Garfield Corp.

Boy Scouts of America, Greater Pittsburgh Council

Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Pennsylvania

Camp Fire Boys and Girls, Greater Pittsburgh Council

Girl Scouts of Western Pennsylvania

Hill House Association

Louise Child Care

Manchester Youth Development Center

Methodist Union of Social Agencies

Rankin Christian Center

Urban Youth Action

YMCA of Pittsburgh

YWCA of Greater Pittsburgh

Strengthening families

Addison Terrace Learning Center

Arsenal Family & Children's Services

Catholic Charities, Diocese of Pittsburgh

Community Human Services Corp.

Family Resources

Family Services of Western Pennsylvania

Focus on Renewal Sto-Rox

Holy Family Institute

Homewood Brushton Community Collaborative

Legal Aid Society

Neighborhood Centers Association

Parental Stress Center

Pittsburgh Action Against Rape

Three Rivers Adoption Council

Three Rivers Youth

United Jewish Federation

Women's Center & Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh

Supporting older people

Jewish Association on Aging

Jewish Community Center

Jewish Family & Children's Services

Lemington Center

Lutheran Service Society

National Steelworkers Oldtimers Association

Stephen Foster Community Center

Vintage

Promoting health and wellness

American Red Cross

Arthritis Foundation

Health Education Center

Hill District Community Collaborative

McKeesport Collaborative

Multiple Sclerosis Service Society

Myasthenia Gravis Association

Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force

Pittsburgh Vision Services

Pittsburgh Hearing Speech & Deaf Services

Renaissance Center

Sickle Cell Society

Sojourner House, Inc.

Spina Bifida Association

United Cerebral Palsy Association

United Mental Health

VNA HealthCare Services

Increasing self-sufficiency

ACTION-Housing, Inc.

Brashear Association

Breachmenders

Northern Area Multi-Service Center

Operation Better Block

Program to Aid Citizen Enterprise

PROGRAM for Female Offenders

Salvation Army

Travelers Aid Society

Urban League

Vietnam Veterans Leadership Program

Vocational Rehabilitation Center

Westinghouse Valley Human Services

YMCA of McKeesport

YWCA of McKeesport