After being with United Way for over 25 years, I have had the opportunity to answer countless questions about United Way and all we do. Today, I want to take the opportunity to share some of that information with those who are unsure of what Middlesex United Way is all about.
Whether it’s questions about where the funds are spent or who is deciding who spends them, I’d love to take some time today to answer a few frequently asked questions.
What is Middlesex United Way?
The Middlesex United Way is a locally-based, volunteer-driven nonprofit organization dedicated to strengthening lives, helping people, and improving community conditions in the 15 towns in Middlesex County. By cultivating leadership and partnerships, bringing resources together and investing in our community, the Middlesex United Way acts as a catalyst to achieve measurable, positive impacts in education, health, financial stability and housing.
The Middlesex United Way assembled teams of volunteers, including town officials, concerned residents, service providers, community leaders and experts to focus on chronic community problems that present ongoing challenges for our residents. Their recommendations shape our work and inform our funding priorities.
To tackle these problems effectively, we have to address the root causes and invest in long-term solutions that can improve community conditions and prevent problems from happening in the first place. That means investing in prevention-based programs that serve a larger population than those identified as needing assistance.
Where does money that Middlesex United Way raises go?
Your gift to Middlesex United Way stays in Middlesex County, unless you designate it elsewhere. The Middlesex United Way is one of the largest nongovernmental funder of local community programs and services in Middlesex County. United Way dollars are targeted to meet critical community needs in the county not funded by other sources.
Who decides how to spend the dollars raised?
Volunteers make all United Way funding decisions. Each year, all services, programs and town-based projects currently funded by United Way are reviewed by volunteers, who are experienced in analyzing budgets, program efficiency and effectiveness. Organizations that are seeking funds present written proposals to United Way and the volunteer teams. Funding decisions are based on dollars available, community need and on the ability of the applicant to meet that need.
What is Middlesex United Way’s relationship to other United Ways?
Each local United Way is an independent 501(c) (3), separately incorporated and governed by a local, volunteer board of directors.
How can I learn more?
It is important to do your research before making a decision to donate, advocate or volunteer to any nonprofit, including the Middlesex United Way, which is committed to transparency and accountability. You can view our financial information on our website at middlesexunitedway.org/accountability.
I hope I’ve answered some of your questions today. Feel free to check out others at middlesexunitedway.org/FAQ.
Kevin Wilhelm is president and CEO of Middlesex United Way