Organizations merge to make bigger impact in each local community
Today, in order to better serve its local community, United Way of Butler County will officially become part of United Way of Southwestern PA (UWSWPA), serving Allegheny, Westmoreland, Fayette, Southern Armstrong, and now Butler counties.
“In order to expand the good work and impact happening across Butler County, United Way of Butler County’s Board of Directors approached UWSWPA to discuss a merger,” said Dan LaVallee, Director of Government and Business Relations, Government Programs, UPMC Health Plan, and chair, United Way of Butler County Board of Directors. “Our respective dollars and efforts will remain in our local community, and together, we can make a greater impact by growing programming, partnerships and assistance in the local Butler community and across UWSWPA’s service area.”
The unified organization will develop more local agency partnerships and programs that can address the needs within each individual county; provide a strong base for continued growth in Butler County and the rest of UWSWPA’s service area; offer coordinated support to corporate partners throughout its service region; and share the experience, data, and resources of each individual organization.
“United Way is dedicated to harnessing the power of local leaders to help make the biggest impact in each community we serve. Local dollars will continue to be invested in the best local agencies with proven programs that deliver measurable results,” said Bobbi Watt Geer, regional vice president, UWSWPA. “We are always seeking opportunities for greater impact and joining together with United Way of Butler County offered a way to address more local human service needs and reach more community members with preventative, proven programming.”
The change and impact has already started. United Way’s 100,000 Books program has expanded into Butler County, with support from PNC Grow up Great®. The program will provide more than 700 Butler County children with literacy kits, which include a book and other educational materials to promote learning and reading outside of the classroom.
Additionally, more than 20 kids from Butler County will participate in United Way’s annual Build-a-Bike, presented in partnership with Williams, at Heinz Field this June, where volunteers build bikes with kids to promote healthy lifestyles, physical activity and teamwork. United Way of Butler County, now part of UWSWPA, has also launched a Women’s Leadership Council that will benefit from future guidance from the Allegheny and Westmoreland chapters.
“As a Butler County resident, I am energized by this new partnership which combines data, resources and community programming expertise. Through our collaborative efforts, we are well-positioned to achieve significant community impact and positive change across the region moving forward.,” said Karen Larrimer, head of retail banking and chief customer officer of The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc., and board chair, UWSWPA Board of Directors.
Three years ago, United Ways of Westmoreland and Allegheny Counties merged to create UWSWPA and have made significant impact across all of the communities it serves. The organization has expanded efforts to serve more veterans, reach more low-income families with tax prep services, engage more volunteers in meaningful experiences, and helped more seniors stay safe and independent in their homes.
UWSWPA will maintain an office in Butler County, and the organization is currently searching for a permanent regional director. The transition will occur over a six-month period.