News and Events

THE UNITED WAY OF NEW CANAAN NAMES NEW BOARD MEMBERS

New Canaan, CT, (October 15, 2004) – The United Way of New Canaan (UWNC), a non-profit community catalyst since 1955, has announced the election of 11new members to the Board of Directors. The Board plays an instrumental role in identifying essential community programs and ensuring the efficient use of donor dollars.

“Our Board of Directors is actively involved in the New Canaan community and brings a wealth of expertise and talent to our organization,” explained Brooke Manning-Hinds, President of the United Way of New Canaan. “Each member will actively help us raise our profile and communicate our many success stories to the community.”

The 11 new members of the Board are as follows:

Michael Avgerinos – Owner of Avgerinos Contractors
Lawrence Brown – Retired Partner, Deloitte & Touche
Jenny Esposito – Financial Service Manager and Assistant Vice President, People’s Bank
Mary Anne Hersam – Assistant Advertising Director, Hersam Acorn Newspapers –
New Canaan Advertiser
Dorcas Hills – President, ACAD Computer Services
Cathy Irwin – Active community volunteer with banking and finance background
Tracy McManus – Active community volunteer with corporate sales and marketing background
Susie Repko – Active community volunteer with institutional finance background
David Rucci – Partner with the law firm Rucci, Burnham, Carta and Edelberg
Brian Scanlon – Employed at McKinsey and Company in Stamford
Michael Wathen – Managing Partner of Pricewaterhouse Coopers

October marks the beginning of the 2004 annual campaign, the United Way of New Canaan’s biggest fundraising event. “Hearts that Care … Neighbors Who Share” was selected as this year’s campaign theme to emphasize how the UWNC improves the lives of local neighbors in need. During the three-month campaign, local volunteers will be appealing to local residents with a town wide mailing and community events. Three of the new board members, Michael Avgerinos, Susie Repko, and Mike Wathen, have joined campaign chair, Joanne Burns, to spearhead a successful campaign strategy for 2004. Last year, over $400,000 was distributed to local programs that improved hundreds of lives throughout New Canaan and surrounding areas.

“Many people are surprised to learn that there are real charitable needs right here in New Canaan”, notes Ms. Manning-Hinds. “We want people to know that when you give to the United Way of New Canaan, your gift goes far, but not far away. Your donation is invested where you live and work to support critical programs that matter right here in our community.”

For nearly 50 years, the United Way of New Canaan has helped enrich community life by promoting learning, empowering, and caring. Over 1,000 local volunteers and donors research the needs of the community and develop strategies for assisting people who need it most, including children, families, individuals, and vulnerable populations. As a community catalyst, we partner with over 35 non-profit agencies to develop programs and ensure the efficient use of donor dollars. To date, over $14 million has been distributed to deliver social services including crisis intervention, emergency food and shelter, family counseling, physical rehabilitation, and youth development. For more information or to make a contribution, call 203-966-4447 or visit www.unitedwaynewcanaan.org.


THE UNITED WAY OF NEW CANAAN 
NAMES ANNUAL CAMPAIGN CHAIRPERSON

New Canaan, CT, (October 11, 2004) – The United Way of New Canaan (UWNC),
a non-profit community catalyst since 1955, has named Joanne Burns its Annual Campaign Chairperson. Joanne will oversee the 2004 Annual Campaign, the local agency’s major fundraising effort of the year.

“Joanne has proven to be an exceptional leader and a valuable United Way volunteer,” said Brooke Manning Hinds, President of the United Way of New Canaan. “We are fortunate to have her overseeing our campaign and help us increase public awareness for vital community programs.”

“Hearts that Care … Neighbors Who Share” was selected as this year’s campaign theme to emphasize how the UWNC improves the lives of local neighbors in need. Each year, the UWNC rigorously reviews over 35 non-profit agencies to identify the most critical community issues. Last year, over $400,000 was distributed to fund hundreds of local programs that improved thousands of lives throughout New Canaan and surrounding areas.

“Many people are surprised to learn that there are real charitable needs right here in New Canaan”, explained Burns, who is actively involved in the New Canaan community. “We want people to know that when you give to the United Way of New Canaan, your gift goes far, but not far away. Your donation is invested where you live and work to support critical programs that matter right here in our community. “

For nearly 50 years, the United Way of New Canaan has helped enrich community life by promoting learning, empowering, and caring. Over 1,000 local volunteers and donors research the needs of the community and develop strategies for assisting people who need it most. To date, over $14 million has been distributed to deliver social services directly to those in need, including crisis intervention, emergency food and shelter, family counseling, physical rehabilitation, and youth development. For more information or to make a contribution, call 203-966-4447 or visit www.unitedwaynewcanaan.org.


THE UNITED WAY OF NEW CANAAN
LAUNCHES 2004 ANNUAL CAMPAIGN   (October 2004) 

New Canaan, CT, (September 27, 2004) – The United Way of New Canaan (UWNC), a non-profit community catalyst since 1955, has launched its 2004 annual campaign to help raise funds and build public awareness for vital community programs. Hearts that Care … Neighbors Who Share was selected as this year’s campaign theme to emphasize how the UWNC improves the lives of local neighbors in need.

“Many people are surprised to learn that there are real charitable needs right here in New Canaan”, explained Joanne Burns, United Way of New Canaan Campaign Chairperson. “We want people to know that when you give to the United Way of New Canaan, your gift goes far, but not far away. Your donation is invested where you live and work to support critical programs that matter right here in our community. “

Each year, local UWNC volunteers take the lead and unite with over 35 non-profit agencies. They collaborate to identify the most critical community issues, share ideas, and develop social programs that will have the greatest positive impact. For nearly five decades, the organization has been instrumental in nurturing children, helping youth succeed, strengthening families, protecting seniors, and caring for neighbors in crisis.

“When you give to the United Way of New Canaan, your one gift is combined with the gifts of others and wisely invested to fund hundreds of programs that help thousands of people”, noted Al Roberts United Way of New Canaan’s Chairman of the Board. “Together, we can do so much more than any one person or one agency could do alone.”

Through its Allocation Process, the United Way of New Canaan rigorously reviews every program before it is funded. Local volunteers are trained to carefully evaluate the finances, programs, and facilities of each agency that applies for funding. They join panels and spend several months conducting in depth, on-site agency visits to evaluate each grant request. The United Way of New Canaan Board of Directors reviews the overall recommendations for final approval and disbursement. This process ensures that public contributions are invested wisely and addresses the most critical community needs. Last year, over $400,000 was distributed to fund local programs that improved countless lives throughout New Canaan and surrounding areas.

For nearly 50 years, the United Way of New Canaan has helped enrich community life by promoting learning, empowering, and caring. Over 1,000 local volunteers and donors research the needs of the community and develop strategies for assisting people who need it most. To date, over $14 million has been distributed to deliver social services directly to those in need, including crisis intervention, emergency food and shelter, family counseling, physical rehabilitation, and youth development. For more information or to make a contribution, call 203-966-4447.

TOUCH A LIFE FUND GIVES HOPE

The United Way of New Canaan has been a community catalyst for nearly five decades. Our history of success has always been measured by our leadership and vision for the future. In 1998, we identified an emerging need for temporary, emergency help.

Misfortune arrives without warning, and some people become victims of circumstance, with no one to turn to …

  • A low-income family whose hot water heater suddenly broke
  • A single mother forced to choose between paying her child’s medical bills or rent

United Way of New Canaan understands that emergencies can strike at any time. We formed a partnership with the Department of Human Services of New Canaan to create the Touch a Life Fund. This program identifies individuals with specific emergency needs and provides immediate help.

Over the years, we have changed the lives of so many people and continue to enrich the life of our community. We urge you to make your on-line pledge today to the United Way of New Canaan. Together, we can do so much more for so many people … more than any one person or one agency could do alone.


THE UNITED WAY OF NEW CANAAN ALLOCATIONS PRESS RELEASE  (JUNE 22, 2004)

THE UNITED WAY OF NEW CANAAN DISTRIBUTES $400,000
TO IMPROVE COMMUNITY LIFE

New Canaan, CT, (June 22, 2004) – The United Way of New Canaan (UWNC), a community catalyst since 1955, today announced it will distribute $400,000 to local agencies and programs that improve people’s lives throughout New Canaan and surrounding areas. Each year, UWNC serves as an agent for change and identifies the most pressing human service issues affecting children, families, individuals and vulnerable populations.

“We have developed an effective community allocation process to ensure funds are invested where they will have the most impact,” explains Brooke Manning-Hinds, President and CEO of United Way of New Canaan. “This year, 47 volunteers completed our community training program. They joined panels and spent several months conducting in depth, on-site agency visits to evaluate each grant request. Our board of directors reviews their overall recommendations for final approval and disbursement.”

Through its allocation process, (UWNC) gains a clear understanding of critical community needs. After completing its community training program, United Way volunteers provide guidance to partner agencies on operating issues, fundraising, program measurement, and volunteer recruitment.

“You can’t make decisions in a vacuum,” noted Brooke Manning-Hinds, who has been involved with (NCUW) for more than 21 years. “Our on-site visits and meetings allow us to get immersed with each agency, share ideas and discover real needs. We create a pool of trained volunteers who will often go on to volunteer time with the agencies they learn about during our allocation process.”Continued

The 2004 Community United Way volunteers include:

Tom Pearl, Larry Brown, Joanne Burns, Karen Ferguson, Ellen McBrearity, Lauren Raabe, Bob Spence, Diane Wells, Carol Blauvelt, Sally Halstead, Tracy McManus, Brian Scanlon, Meryl Vallar, Caroline Daifotis, Barbara Davis, Marigrace Dubas, Nancy Ferreira, Mare Herzog, Cathy Irwin, George Ritchie, Jim Dawson, Jenny Field, Dorcas Hills, Sue Lione, Sue Scannell, Alma Vaupel, Ed Vaupel, Jenny Esposito, Vin Ferullo, Kathleen Holland, David Rucci, Diana Hanauer, Susie Repko, Al Roberts, Michael Wathen, Mary Jo Wathen, Catherine Welsh, Tom Gerguson, Dave Hunt, Tracey Karl, Ed O’Neil, Linda Spence, Bob Bergstrom, Evelyn Bergstrom, Dick Gerweck, Barbara Gerweck, Peter Hanson, Mary Runestad.

This year’s $400,000 allocation will be distributed as follows:

$170,500 (42%) to help children and youth succeed through grants to: A Better Chance, Boy Scouts, Carver Community Center, Child Guidance Center, Child Guidance Center of Mid-Fairfield, Children’s Connection, Domus Foundation, Girl Scouts, Horizons Kids in Crisis, New Canaan CARES, New Canaan Nature Center, New Canaan Teen Center, New Canaan YMCA, and the Norwalk Grassroots Tennis Program

$107,500 (27%) will strengthen and support families and individuals through grants to: Dispute Settlement Center, Domestic Violence Crisis Center, Family Centers, Family & Children’s Agency, Family ReEntry, LMG-Family Conversations, Norwalk Court Program, Sexual Assault Crisis Center, and Urban League

$87,000 (22%) will support vulnerable populations through grants to: Arts for Healing, Get About Inc., Meals on Wheels, Nursing & Home Care, STAR Inc., Senior Center of New Canaan, and South Avenue Cottage

$35,000 (9%) will meet basic and emergency needs through grants to: 2-1-1 Infoline, the Food Bank, New Covenant House of Hospitality, Norwalk Emergency Shelter, Shelter for the Homeless, and Touch A Life Fund

For nearly 50 years, the United Way of New Canaan has served as an agent for change to improve community life and promote learning, empowering, and caring. Over 1,000 local volunteers and donors help research the needs of the community and develop strategies for assisting to the people who need it most. We partner with over 35 non-profit agencies to develop programs and ensure the efficient use of donor dollars. To date, over $14 million has been distributed to deliver social services directly to those in need, including crises intervention, emergency food and shelter, family counseling, physical rehabilitation, and youth development. For more information, call 203-972-4447 or visit www.unitedwaynewcanaan.org

Giving Teens a Voice   (June 24, 2004)
Early Intervention is the Answer

The last decade has seen a growing incidence in violence at schools as well as increasingly risky behaviors among adolescents. Even in a nurturing family environment, like New Canaan, adolescent depression and suicide lurk below the façade of teenage frivolity.  The United Way of New Canaan reaches out for ways to protect our youth from abuse and family crisis before they are in danger.

Kids in Crisis, a United Way agency, protects infants, children and teens from abuse and family crisis. They offer free round-the-clock crisis intervention, counseling, emergency shelter, and prevention programs in local communities. The Kids in Crisis 24-Hour Helpline, in part funded by the United Way of New Canaan, is always available to help children and families through a crisis by calling 203-327-KIDS.

TeenTalk, a Kids in Crisis program, is available full time at the New Canaan High School.TeenTalkprovides a trained outreach counselor to adolescent students who may be at risk for emotional problems that will impact their own development and the safety and well being of all students. Teens need someone to turn to, someone who is available to them every day, when and where they need them. TeenTalk counselors have an office at school, and are trained to identify students at risk and to reach out to them.

TeenTalk was piloted in Westport in the spring of 1999, just before the devastation at Columbine High School. It is believed by many professionals that if a TeenTalk counselor had been available to the students, the crisis might have been averted.

While no one person or group can guarantee an end to adolescent distress or violence, The United Way of New Canaan understands that high schools must consider closer working relationships with social service professionals, like those at Kids in Crisis, who are in the business of working with and protecting young people. An ounce of quality prevention is worth a ton of recrimination.

Aging Well …Living Well  (May 26, 2004)

Older American’s Month is celebrated each May. The United Way of New Canaan recognizes seniors for the important role they play in their families, communities, and workplaces. Through United Way of New Canaan funding, the Senior Center is able to inform the community on programs that assist and engage active adults over 50. Last year, more than 1,200 New Canaan adults made over 20,000 visits to the center, which is located in the Lapham Community Center in Waveny Park. There, they have the choice of participating in adult education classes, seminars, day trips and games as well as health testing, flu shots, and inexpensive, nutritious lunches.

The nearly 60 adult education classes in exercise, art, computers, history, music, bridge, gardening and more are nearly always filled by people looking to stretch their minds and bodies. The computer learning center offers training in all levels, and they recently added more advanced classes, including digital photography, computer maintenance, and buying/selling on E-Bay.

When Older American’s Month was first proclaimed in 1963, only 17 million Americans lived to celebrate their 65th birthday. Today, over 35 million Americans have reached this milestone…and by the year 2030, the older population will double to 70 million. The United Way of New Canaan identifies this trend and helps seniors to remain healthy, independent, and productive at home and in the community.

Students learn acceptance in nature’s classroom  (May, 2004)
LINKS PROGRAM

For over 4 years, United Way of New Canaan has partnered with the New Canaan Nature Center and helped fund its LINKS program

LINKS is an inter-scholastic education program which pairs urban and suburban 4th and 5th grade classes to work together to solve complex environmental problems. It integrates a science-based curriculum and team-building activities to engage the students and develop a stronger appreciation for the environment.

Through shared experiences, students foster critical life building skills such as decision making, leadership, consensus building, and conflict resolution. These skills have been proven to prevent harmful risk behaviors (violence, teen pregnancy, suicide, and substance abuse). LINKS encompasses over 100 classes from New Canaan, Stamford, Norwalk, Wilton, and Weston public schools.

America is becoming an increasingly diverse society … one with a complex mix of races, cultures, languages, and religious affiliations. The United Way of New Canaan identifies that this trend has significant implications for the educational needs of our youth. Through our funding, LINKS empowers young people to work together with peers from different cultures and communities. Understanding, accepting, and valuing diversity will help prepare our children to thrive in an ever-changing society.