The historic challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic have been very difficult for our country, community, and families. Our “new normal” is stressful and filled with anxiety and uncertainty for everyone. During this time, your United Way has been working hard to address some of the increasingly unmet basic needs in our 25-community service area: Hampden County, Granby, and South Hadley.
In 2021, we accomplished:
Feeding the Hungry
30,025lb of food distributed from April-December 2021.
193 families, totaling nearly 500 people, enrolled as clients.
Served 1,000 cooked meals at the Holyoke Boys & Girls Club.
Provided full Thanksgiving meals with gift certificates for Chicopee Cupboard families.
Actively collecting gently-used laptops for 20 clients who need them for job searches, job training, telehealth, or remote work.
OnBoard: nonprofit diversity from the top down
Our December OnBoard matching event welcomed nearly 100 people to explore board & committee opportunities with area non-profits.
Ongoing pilot program wherein Palmer middle school students designed a Community Closet, with clothing and toiletries for local families in need.
Happy Camper Fund
Introduced a summer field trip program for 1,175 youth at six summer camps to enjoy field trips on Fridays. Destinations included Springfield Museums, Mystic Aquarium, Connecticut Science Center, Boston Science Museum, New England Aquarium, Forest Park Zoo, The Ecotarium, Sturbridge Village, among others. We provided lunch and transportation, together with admission for each visit.
Our two highly trained financial coaches work with nearly 100 clients to help them create and adhere to household budgets, pay down debt, improve credit scores, increase savings.
Day of Caring
Hosted 12 volunteer projects in September 2021
Stuff the Bus
Provided 1,541 backpacks to school districts throughout our geographic footprint.
Mass2-1-1 & Call2Talk
We opened a Call2Talk satellite office for volunteers and graduate students at the Springfield College School of Social Work to answer calls from people in need of emotional support. Our satellite office took 2,071 calls during 2021.
For the 25 communities we serve, there were 31,690 calls to Mass 2-1-1. The top three information requests were about COVID, housing, and mental health.
So please give as generously as you can to this year’s United Way of Pioneer Valley campaign and multiply your gift by telling your friends to join you! I thank you in advance for your support.
Paul L. Mina
President & CEO, United Way of Pioneer Valley
Executive Director, Mass2-1-1
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