A Letter From Our CEO: Welcome to a New Year of Hope, Opportunity and Success
Dear North Texas Neighbors and Investors:
And so we begin…
A new year of hope, opportunity and success – along with some laughter and joy – stretches ahead of us with the change of the calendar. I’m looking forward to another BIG year in 2023: big ideas combined with bold action that will continue to deliver positive impact throughout North Texas.
Because of the support of our corporate, philanthropic and community partners and YOU, we ended 2022 with several notable accomplishments:
- When local students missed out on learning opportunities because they lacked access to connectivity and digital technology, we partnered with AT&T to launch Digital Connections, providing more than 2000 free laptops to southern Dallas families.
- When hard-working employees struggled to make ends meet, we enrolled hundreds more participants in Pathways to Work, enabling them to access better-paying jobs.
- As the cost of healthcare continued to rise, our Healthcare Navigators assisted tens of thousands of families with accessing affordable, high-quality insurance plans.
- And when we challenged our community to create an endowment to impact North Texas in perpetuity, you answered the call and we closed the groundbreaking $100 million Unite Forever endowment campaign over goal and three years ahead of plan. Huge thanks to everyone who supported the campaign. The impact these investments will have across North Texas is immeasurable.
You can take a deeper dive into the impact and outcomes of our programs and partnerships by reading our newly released 2021-2022 Impact Report. Together, we invested thousands of hours improving access to education, income and health for 1.5 million North Texans over the last year. This report captures our collective impact and is a great foundation for accelerating our work in the new year.
In 2023, with your continued support and partnership, we’ll build on the opportunities we created for North Texans to thrive by staying focused on our Aspire United 2030 goals to:
- Increase by 50% the number of students reading on grade level by third grade.
- Increase by 20% the number of young adults earning a living wage, adding nearly $800 million in wages per year in North Texas.
- Increase to 96% the number of North Texans with access to affordable health care insurance.
Each new year is a fresh opportunity to collectively redouble our efforts to make North Texas a place where every single neighbor has the access and opportunity to thrive. And a new year brings new opportunities to play a part in creating lasting change right here at home. Exciting events and new initiatives in 2023 will ensure our Live United movement will create more opportunities for North Texans than ever before.
If you’re looking for some inspiration, please consider signing up to volunteer your time to share the magic of books with North Texas students on United Way Reading Day, March 3. Or plan to join us at The Pitch, our exhilarating social innovation competition where social entrepreneurs will have you on the edge of your seat as they compete for funding and the title Social Innovator of the Year on April 19th.
The new year also brings with it the biennial legislative session in Texas, so there will be many opportunities to raise your voice and advocate for state policy that impacts the building blocks of opportunity – education, income and health. Our profile in Austin and with other United Ways and community leaders around the state is important as we work for lasting change in Metropolitan Dallas. Some changes are possible on the ground here; others require advocacy in the form of policy changes in order to make them possible. Sign up today for our advocacy alerts so that you can stay informed and engaged.
This is just a quick preview of what’s ahead. Stay tuned for more opportunities to share your time, talent and treasure to drive impact for our neighbors across North Texas.
The level of widespread support and brainpower available to United Way and our own commitment to driving measurable outcomes in the areas of education, income and health are bound as never before. We will ensure successive generations of North Texans will receive education that leads to better jobs, more secure futures, and stronger health. We will produce change because you have united with us.
In closing, my wish for you is a peaceful and joyful January and a happy and healthy new year. Thank you for being an important part of our movement for change. You are what unites us. With your passion, dedication and support, 2023 will be another BIG year for United Way—and our community—where, together, we work to ensure our region is the best place for everyone to live, work and raise families.