For Immediate Release: August 26, 2020

United Way of the Midlands Kicks Off Local Fundraising Drive for Community Members in Need

United Way of the Midlands (UWM) will kick off its annual fundraising campaign during its virtual event tomorrow, August 27th at 9:00 a.m., and share how the metro can come together during this difficult time to meet increased community needs.

The program will feature a panel presentation during which community members will discuss the challenges they have faced during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as an inspirational message from Greg McDermott, head coach of Creighton University’s men’s basketball team.

Clark and Emily Lauritzen, the 2020 Campaign Chairs, will also deliver remarks. Clark is the Chairman and President of First National Bank of Omaha. UWM is thankful for their passionate leadership and support of this year’s campaign.

“Due to the impacts of COVID-19, the need in our community is greater than ever,” said Mr. Lauritzen. “United Way has a long history of bringing community partners together to respond to community crisis. When we support their efforts, we ensure thousands of people will receive the support they need to get back on their feet during this difficult time.”

Funds raised through UWM’s annual fundraising campaign will be invested into local nonprofit programs that are providing basic needs, education and financial stability supports, forming a circle of support for people who have been impacted by COVID-19 or who are facing other challenges in the Omaha-Council Bluffs metro.

“We know our community’s greatest challenges can’t be solved alone,” said Shawna Forsberg, President and CEO of UWM. “By working with corporate, agency and government partners and metro residents, we can make a lasting impact and help those who need it most. This is especially critical as our community works to address the devastating impact of COVID-19.”

Community members can register to attend the kickoff at the following link: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_-lkX6bPiS-y-SRiQnyOSPA. Those who are interested in supporting the campaign and are not part of a United Way workplace campaign can make a donation by visiting www.unitedwaymidlands.org/donate.

Tomorrow will also mark the launch of UWM’s #MaskUpMetro awareness campaign. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska, First National Bank of Omaha, Mutual of Omaha and the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce have come together to increase positive perceptions around mask-wearing and mitigate the spread of COVID-19. #MaskUpMetro highlights the fact that community members who wear masks are protecting the safety and well-being of those around them, making them community heroes. To learn more, visit www.maskupmetro.org.

During the campaign, UWM is encouraging individuals to post a picture of themselves wearing a mask on social media with the hashtag #MaskUpMetro. Thanks to donations of masks from Ideal Images, Mangelsen’s, the Omaha Storm Chasers and Union Omaha, UWM will distribute 13,000 masks to nonprofit agencies serving youth during out-of-school time like Girls Inc., Partnership 4 Kids and NorthStar.

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 information.

Download full press release HERE