Thanks to Your Support, Our Work Earns Praise

By United Way of King County, on December 3, 2021 | In Breaking the Cycle of Poverty, Fighting Homelessness, Helping Students Graduate, News, Racial Equity

United Way continues to earn donors’ trust and support: Those were words of the Seattle Times, whose editorial this week detailing United Way of King County’s efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic were among many plaudits the 100-year-old organization has garnered this year.

United Way has worked with community-minded individuals, government, corporate partners and local organizations to provide rental assistance, food relief and other supports to thousands of families impacted by COVID-19.

That included partnering with the City of Seattle and King County to administer rent assistance and provide support to tenants and landlords, including proactive outreach to small landlords who may be struggling with mortgage debt. 

The organization that began in 1921 as Seattle Community Fund and has guided communities through World War II, the 1965 Puget Sound Earthquake and an economic freefall that prompted the famous billboard, “Will the last person leaving Seattle turn out the lights,” has demonstrated its prowess during the COVID-19 pandemic.

As the virus has infected more than 173,000 and killed nearly 2,100 people in the county, it as also helped spike homeless and jobless rates while spotlighting already troublesome disparities. United Way’s innovation and rapid-response capabilities has enabled the organization to meet people at their points of need and point them in the direction of services many did not know existed.

Those efforts have scarcely gone unnoticed.

“United Way leaders are bringing renewed energy and broader reach to the organization’s vital work preventing homelessness, improving access to education and financial stability, said the editorial board of the Seattle Times, the largest print media outlet in the Pacific Northwest. “Their ultimate goal is to help create a more inclusive, equitable community where everyone belongs.”

Their ultimate goal is to help create a more inclusive, equitable community where everyone belongs.

The Seattle Times

The Seattle Times also praised the leadership of United Way President and CEO Gordon McHenry, Jr., who has ushered in more focus on strengthening relationships with grassroots organizations, making more investments in communities of color and devising a strategic plan grounded in racial equity.

McHenry’s efforts were also lauded by the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle, who in November honored him with its President’s Award  President’s Award. The inaugural award to given to an Urban League community partner that makes outstanding contributions to those Urban League serves.

 The Urban League partnered with United Way to provide to ensure that its constituents remain in their homes while gaining access to adequate food and resources.  And the organization praised McHenry for being a “voice of equity” and bringing economic empowerment and opportunity to communities.

Gordon McHenry, Jr., President and CEO of
United Way of King County

McHenry in November was also named to the Puget Sound Business Journal’s Power 100, an annual list of local power brokers, newsmakers, influencers and luminaries. Puget Sound Business Journal spotlighted United Way’s work during the pandemic as it has provided rental assistance to more than 16,500 and provided more than 150,000 deliveries of food to King County households.

United Way thanks its donors, volunteers, community partners and corporate partners for contributions that helped make our work possible. As organizations and media sing our praises, we sing yours.

Help us as we work toward a racially just community where people have homes, students graduate and families are financially stable.


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