Our Work

Advancing the Common Good:

United Way's Work in Our Community

Everyone deserves opportunities to have a good life: a quality education that leads to a stable job, enough income to support a family through retirement, and good health. That’s why United Way’s work is focused on the building blocks for a good life:

  • Education – Helping children and youth achieve their potential
  • Income – Promoting financial stability and independence
  • Health – Improving people’s health

Did you know that in the last year, United Way and our community partners touched over 22,000 people? That's one in three Lee County residents. We’re fighting for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in our community. Here are some of the ways we're doing that:

  • Our WorkPartner agency support: In 2019-20, United Way is supporting 12 local nonprofits that are providing services and programs to the community
  • 211: United Way’s free information and referral service that’s available 24/7/365 by simply calling 211 from any phone, or by visiting this website. In Lee County, 211 is the portal for Coordinated Entry for homelessness services. Anyone experiencing homelessness in Lee County must first call 211 to be referred for shelter or other services.
  • VolunteerLee.com: United Way’s volunteer resource website, where people can search for and respond to volunteer opportunities all over Lee County
  • Write Start for Students: Together with community partners, we collected more than 3,300 school-supply items for Lee County Schools students who would otherwise not have had the tools they need to be successful in school.
  • Super Summer Reading: In 2019, United Way provided 300 book bags filled with books and summer reading activities to children in Lee County public schools, helping to stem summer reading loss and keep skills sharp.
  • Self-Sufficiency Standard: In 2017, United Way of NC commissioned this report that calculates how much is needed for a family to make ends meet without public or private assistance. The report takes family size and composition into account, and the data is available for every county in North Carolina.
  • Our Money Needs Calculator:  This handy tool is available here. Just enter the number of people in your family and the ages of the children to learn how much you need to earn in Lee County to make ends meet without assistance. Once you know that number, click the links to other resources that can help you achieve your financial goals.
  • FamilyWize prescription discount cards: United Way provides this free resource to help people save money at the pharmacy. Last year, over 28,000 Lee County residents saved over $350,000 by using the card. Download your card here or let us know you need one and we'll get it to you.
  • Emerging Leaders Society (ELS): United Way’s newest initiative, geared to those age 40 and under, but open to all. ELS inspires, educates, and empowers the next generation of leaders who want to make a difference in Lee County. Emerging Leaders enjoy exclusive professional development opportunities and participate in a wide variety of volunteer service areas.
  • Community Involvement: United Way is a partner in many community initiatives:
    • S3 Housing Connect (local task force addressing homelessness in Lee County)
    • Community Resilience Collaborative (addressing Adverse Childhood Experiences)
    • Chamber of Commerce Education and Workforce Development Committee (Lee County)
    • Human Services Technology Advisory Board of Central Carolina Community College
    • Local Emergency Planning Committee (Lee County)
    • Business Impact Committee, Dunn Area Chamber of Commerce