Throughout the year, we supported communities in need by engaging in public policy and advocacy, while fighting to give all people the chance to provide for their families and save for the future.
Changing Lives through Community Connections
Every year, AT&T employees volunteer their time in benefit of building healthier communities. An example of their service can be found in Washington, where during the annual “Day of Caring” event, employees joined United Way of King County and 13,000 volunteers to improve their local communities—from painting and cleaning up schools and shelters, to sorting food at food banks. This engaging day of service resulted in a significant amount of volunteer time, which helped strengthen local communities.
As part of their dedication to improving education, piloting family-engagement strategies and boosting high school graduation rates, AT&T also sponsored United Way’s community breakfast. This annual event brought together leaders from business, human services, government and the public to forecast the work that’s needed to ensure people have homes, students graduate on time and families are financially stable. The fundraising event benefited United Way’s Reconnecting Youth program, which operates in 12 sites and focuses on the 14,000 young people (aged 16-24) who are not in school and do not have stable jobs. With AT&T’s support, United Way is helping today’s youth finish high school, pursue higher education and follow a successful career path.
The Value of Employee Volunteerism
Employee volunteerism has long been a driver of John Deere’s organizational identity. That was evident in August when 40 employees in Tarnowo Podgórne, Poland, supported United Way Poland’s “First Bell” program, which provided 500 children and youth with the school supplies necessary to start school off on the right foot. The giving continued in Germany as 300 employees from Bruchsal, Kaiserslautern, Mannheim and Zweibrücken came together to help the hungry. Spanning four “Day of Caring” events across the country, employees packed 6,400 bags containing more than 28 tons of food for local food banks—enough to feed 56,000 people.
Meanwhile, in France, John Deere employees mentored unemployed youth to set them on a path toward higher education. And in Spain, they hosted a career fair to share with teachers and tutors new opportunities to inspire their students. According to one of the school’s tutors, the event was a “great opportunity for the students to have a glimpse at the future they could enjoy if they work at it.” These are just a few examples of what is possible when United Way and John Deere come together in support of community betterment.
Making a Mark Nationwide
Each year, United Ways facilitate 115,000 workplace campaigns that help employees build stronger communities where they live and work. These campaigns elevate problems in the community, spotlight solutions and engage employees in meaningful volunteer efforts that make a difference.
At Nationwide, based in Columbus, Ohio, more than 800 associates volunteer their time and talents to engage their 34,000 colleagues across the country in the company’s annual United Way campaign. Each September, they enlist the support of local United Ways as they inform associates of the organization’s collective work through agency fairs, guest speakers and educational events. The result is a participation level hovering at 70 percent, with contributions—doubled with the Nationwide Foundation match—benefitting nearly 720 United Ways.
In addition, several hundred associates participate in United Way’s "Community Care Day" events around the nation each year. From Sacramento, California, to Gainesville, Florida, Nationwide associates unite in service to do everything from building community gardens to improving schools. In central Ohio alone, nearly 200 associates participated—during work hours—in the Columbus Volunteer Challenge, an annual citywide volunteer event hosted by United Way of Central Ohio and the City of Columbus. Together with United Way, Nationwide continues to make a mark throughout the country.
Helping People Build a Financial Future
Since Wells Fargo and United Way started the Financial Capability Network together five years ago, 2,259 trained financial coaches have helped 42,500 people in eight communities get a handle on their money management. As a result, 32,000 people reported hitting at least one personal financial goal; 18,000 people boosted their income; almost 9,000 people increased their savings; 6,500 people reduced their debt; and 4,402 people improved their credit score. People from across the nation are benefiting from this partnership.
In Des Moines, Iowa, the partnership helped Tina Turner realize her dream of owning a hair salon that welcomes women from diverse cultures. Tina opened a small shop a few years ago, but struggled to grow her business because she lacked financial skills. Tina found a financial coach through the Financial Capability Network, and worked to better structure her finances, create a budget and set up a business plan focused on her career goal. After tracking expenses and adjusting her finances for two years, Tina found—and was able to afford—her dream salon space.
This is just one example of how Wells Fargo and United Way are helping people get ahead. Around the country, Wells Fargo employees are deeply engaged in United Way’s work. This year, they volunteered more than 1.73 million hours, and have held the largest annual workplacegiving campaign for eight straight years. The company also supports emergency relief efforts by donating cash, volunteer work hours and more. Together, United Way and Wells Fargo are setting communities up for success, while giving people the tools they need to gain their financial footing.