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Economic Mobility

The whole community benefits when more working individuals and families are able to stop walking a financial tightrope and get on solid ground. Financially stable people are more likely to have access to quality health care, provide a good education for their children and contribute to their local economies.

In order for people to achieve financial stability and subsequently improve their socio-economic status, they need the education and skills to get a good-paying job with the possibility for promotion; access to affordable financial products; and the knowledge, skills and supports to make choices that help them achieve their financial goals.

Job Training

When we put more people to work, it benefits them, their families, and their local economy. In Cincinnati, we’re training people for the jobs of the future – today.

United Way recognizes that economic success in Greater Cincinnati depends on the creation of a qualified workforce. In 2008, Partners for a Competitive Workforce (PCW) was formed to bring together area employers, workforce investment boards, Chambers of Commerce, educational institutions, labor, service providers, and philanthropic funders.

Managed by United Way of Greater Cincinnati, PCW is focused on growing the skills of the region’s current and future workforce. The Partnership is focused on three key initiatives: (1) connecting businesses with qualified workers, (2) developing sector-based career pathways to prepare individuals for in-demand careers and (3) improving work readiness. Our results so far are a testament to what we can accomplish when all sectors of society unite in common purpose:

  • More than 10,000 people have been trained for in-demand jobs since 2008
  • 78% of those people obtained employment, and 67% retained their job for at least one year
  • Annual earnings of participants increased by up to $7,500

Financial Coaching

Most people aren’t looking for a handout; they just want a shot at building a better life. Wells Fargo is providing exactly that – for over 20,000 families across the U.S.

Wells Fargo has partnered with United Way since 2012 to create a Financial Capability Network that educates individuals and families on how to save more, manage their assets and debt, build credit, and more. Currently operating in eight communities across the United States, the network has helped over 20,000 low-income families get on more solid financial ground.

From Des Moines, Iowa to Miami, Florida, this groundbreaking partnership is changing thousands of people’s lives – people like Demi and Art, who were able to pay off thousands of dollars in debt, improve their credit score by 53 points, increase their savings nine-fold, find better-paying jobs, and get on the road to eventual home ownership.

Veterans Services

Our men and women in uniform have served their nation proudly. Now it's our chance to serve them. Mission UnitedTM equips them for their next crucial mission: coming home.

Too many veterans struggle with the transition to civilian life. One in five veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from PTSD, and the suicide rate among veterans exceeds the national average. Unemployment and homelessness also remain a problem for veterans across the country. Too often, the obstacle to helping our veterans isn’t a lack of services, but a lack of coordination between those services. That’s where Mission UnitedTM comes in.

In 2013, United Way of Broward County in Fort Lauderdale, Florida was the first to create Mission United, an innovative program that fills the gaps in veteran services with one streamlined process. By simply dialing 954-4-UNITED, people are connected to 2-1-1 (United Way’s referral and information telephone helpline and website), where they can get information and referrals, and connect with a case manager who links them to essential services.

So far, United Way of Broward County has helped more than 5,000 veterans and their families re-acclimate to civilian life – with everything from medical services to workforce training. Last year alone, almost half of all the homeless veterans in the greater Fort Lauderdale area were served by Mission United and since 2013, over 900 veterans and their families received help to leave the streets behind and move into stable long-term housing with an 85% success rate.

Mission United is now going national. In Orlando, Florida, Mission United has already provided more than 3,000 people with access to emergency legal assistance, homeless prevention and emergency shelters. And on Long Island, New York, Mission United has impacted over 1,170 veterans and their families through job training/placement, emergency financial assistance and case management.

More about 2-1-1

Key to the success of Mission UnitedTM is 2-1-1, a referral and information telephone helpline and website that connects people all across North America to essential health and human services. The service is free, accessible 24/7, completely confidential, and available in more than 180 languages.

In 2015 alone, 2-1-1 agents answered more than 14 million calls, connecting people to the help they need with housing, healthcare, employment, legal aid, education, disaster services and much more.

One-Stop Centers

There’s rarely just one obstacle to getting on solid financial ground. Bank of America helps connect people to tax services, employment, and more – all under one roof.

You may walk through the door looking for a job or help with your finances, but what you will find is a host of experts that are able to connect you to a range of services designed to improve your overall financial stability, including financial coaching, employment services, free tax preparation assistance, foreclosure prevention, FAFSA application assistance, and more. This concept, known as Integrated Services Delivery, is being expanded throughout the network as part of a national partnership between United Way and Bank of America. 

United Way and Bank of America are working together in eight cities to advance local programs through the Integrated Service Delivery Learning Network.  In its first year, the partnership has already helped more than 3,000 people obtain a job, increase their net income, increase their net worth, and/or improve their credit score.

More about MyFreeTaxes

United Way’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) centers offer free in-person tax preparation and engage thousands of volunteers across hundreds of communities.  To reach more tax filers, United Way also promotes MyFreeTaxes.com, which is powered by H&R Block, and provides free federal and state tax preparation online to qualifying individuals and families in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.  Since 2009, these in-person and online options have helped millions of US taxpayers receive more than $10 billion in tax refunds and save over $2 billion in tax preparation fees.