For Immediate Release: July 22, 2020
United Way of the Midlands Announces 2020-21 Community Investments
United Way of the Midlands (UWM) is pleased to announce it raised nearly $19.2 million for programs and
initiatives serving the Omaha-Council Bluffs metro through June 30, 2021, including $1.4 million for those
impacted by COVID-19 and area flooding. This was made possible by the generous support of individual
donors, corporate partners, family foundations, the UWM Board of Directors and the 2019 Campaign Chairs,
James and Paula Blackledge.
UWM aims to invest donors’ dollars as efficiently and effectively as possible in order to meet increased needs
due to COVID-19 and maintain its long-standing commitment to addressing social injustice. As part of this
effort, UWM adapted its investment process to give agencies and programs flexibility to respond to immediate
and long-term challenges. UWM’s latest community investments will be made for a one-year time period
instead of two, allowing UWM and its partners to reassess community needs in one-year’s time. UWM will
also be making multiple grants throughout the year to ensure programs can be nimble and will have resources
available for both immediate response and recovery efforts.
Because more people are struggling to meet their basic needs than ever, UWM will distribute a significant
portion of the total investment to basic needs programs that provide access to healthy food, domestic
violence services, housing and physical and mental health services, including medical research; its 211
Helpline; the Court Referral Community Service Program and Karnett Trust. Knowing that children have spent
less time in the classroom and are at higher risk of falling behind, UWM will also invest in education programs
such as out-of-school-time, mentoring and early education programs that focus on improving literacy and
school attendance. And, because unemployment rates are at record highs, UWM will distribute funding to
financial stability programs that provide asset development; job training; post-secondary education support;
personal finance classes and, through a collaboration with the Omaha Federation of Labor, upskilling/reskilling
of the workforce. For a full list of programs funded through UWM’s Community Care Fund, please go to
Together, these programs and initiatives will forward UWM’s mission – to focus the efforts of many to help
our neighbors stand strong. We know one organization alone cannot solve our community’s problems. When
we take a “united” approach by collaborating with corporations, government agencies, nonprofit partners and
community members, we create a circle of support for our neighbors so they can tackle multiple challenges at
once. When more people can meet their needs, we build a more equitable community where everyone has
the opportunity to grow and thrive.
As UWM moves into a new campaign year, we will need the support of the community more than ever. If you
would like to help our neighbors who need it most, you can make a gift at www.unitedwaymidlands.org/donate.
About United Way of the Midlands
United Way of the Midlands (UWM) has served the Omaha-Council Bluffs metro for more than 95 years.
Guided by best practices and community input, it approaches poverty in a specific way – a “united” way. With
the support of volunteers, community partners and donors, UWM invests donor dollars efficiently and
effectively in our local community. These dollars fund basic needs, education and financial stability programs
at local nonprofits, creating a circle of support for people in need. Please visit unitedwaymidlands.org for more