Over 200 residents join UWM in celebrating community, supporting local nonprofits
Local residents, business professionals and agencies help United Way of the Midlands officially ring in a new giving year where essential programs will receive the funding they need to change residents lives for the better.
There’s only one way to get ready for another year of fundraising, and that’s to kick it off with big party to celebrate community members who contribute their time, talent and resources to United Way of the Midlands! Over 200 people came out to Omaha’s new downtown destination The Capitol District to support UWM as we prepare to raise dollars that will support those who need it most in the Omaha-Council Bluffs metro next year.
The public event made use of The Capitol District’s outside space and stage area where attendees gathered to play yard games, listen to music from local band the Shenanigans, capture Kodak moments provided by Photo Booths by SKP and enjoy on-the-house hors d’oeuvres and drinks from local establishments including Annie’s Irish Pub, Nosh Wine Lounge, Burdock + Bitters and Society 1854.
Event hosts and campaign chairs Tim and Terri Burke kept the crowd’s energy high while sharing their perspective on needs in the Omaha-Council Bluffs metro and why they are committed to giving back. Tim is President and Chief Executive at OPPD, as well as a lead musician in the band Shenanigans. Terri is an active community volunteer.
“I wouldn’t be standing here in front of you today if I didn’t whole-heartedly believe in the work United Way of the Midlands is doing right here in Omaha…As we begin a new campaign year, I challenge you to think about the other people in our community who haven’t yet received our help – the people who are struggling to survive every day. And I challenge you to do everything in your power to help them stand strong and achieve independence.”
United Way of the Midlands President and Chief Executive Shawna Forsberg extended a huge thank you to the crowd, sharing results from generous donors last year including providing more than 32,000 physical and mental health care services and helping 9,000 students improve their reading skills. But, Forsberg said, with over 100,000 people in our metro who are living in poverty, there’s still a lot more to do.
“We need your passion, we need your leadership, and yes, we need your dollars to create change in our community. Great thing will happen when we unite our efforts. Our schools will be better because more students will be ready to learn. Our neighborhoods will be safer because more residents will have a productive living. The metro area will be a healthier place because people have access to healthy food, and our community will be a brighter, warmer, more welcoming place.”
Tim and the Shenanigans rocked out the rest of the evening, covering popular songs including “Walk the Line” by Johnny Cash, “Royals” by Lorde and “Tennessee Whiskey” by Chris Stapleton, which the crowd sang and some even danced along to.
Thank you again to The Capitol District, our event sponsors, local press including WOWT, KMTV, Omaha World Herald and KETV, and everyone who came out to celebrate our 2018 Campaign! We are officially ready to inspire the Omaha-Council Bluffs metro to give to United Way so that local funded programs can continue doing great work that makes our community strong. We love this town.
Campaign Theme: Community
The event started off with a campaign video that highlights three vital Omaha-area programs, funded by United Way donors, that provide supports across UWM’s three giving areas – basic needs, education and financial stability.
“They’re our neighbors and our friends, and our neighbors and friends need our help to make Omaha one of the best places in the country to live.” – Mike Hornacek, Chief Executive of UWM-supported Omaha-area nonprofit Together.