November 03, 2017

800 Women UNITE to Help Give Kids the Very Best Start

So many children in our community struggle to get the school supplies they need to succeed. So many children in our community don’t have access to enough meals. Thankfully, there are so many women stepping up to address these problems and uniting to create a change for the children in our community.

Yesterday, over 800 women gathered together for the Annual United Way Women United Luncheon to support student success, connect, and share inspiring stories. Guest speaker, Ashley Rhodes-Courter, took the stage to share her story and the importance of childhood services. Ashley was shuffled around the Florida foster care system where she was beaten, starved and separated from her brother. After she was adopted at age 12, she became an advocate for children in foster care. “Everyone deserves at least one person in their life who knows the color of their eyes” Ashley told the crowd at yesterday’s event. Every child deserves the care and support they need to grow and succeed in life and United Way, with the help hundreds of local women, is working to provide just that.

Providing that support can be shown in a variety of ways. Whether it’s providing a child care scholarship, a book to read, or a backpack with the supplies needed to start the school year off right. That’s what was given to Irma at age twelve, 19 years ago when her family came to Fargo, ND as refugees from the war in Bosnia. Irma Ciber, another guest speaker at the Women United Luncheon, shared her story of how United Way’s first annual School Supply Drive gave her and her sister the supplies and the confidence they needed to begin what would turn out to be a successful life here in Fargo after enduring hardship in their home country. She talked about the importance and the impact these kind of programs have on children and is an advocate for how what may seem like a simple gift, such as a backpack, can make all the difference for one child. Watch Irma’s inspiring story here.

It’s because of the support at events, like the Women United Luncheon, that United Way is able to provide school supplies, mental health services, and much more to children in need in our community. All the proceeds from the Women United Luncheon support the work that United Way does to help children get the VERY best start. Thanks to the women in our community who are willing to step up, women who are living UNITED, we are able to provide that support to the children who need it most.

Want to get involved? Become a part of the Women United Leadership Team! Click HERE to learn more!

See the Women United Luncheon News Stories:

The Forum – “Life Saving Work: United Way Speaker Highlights Importance of Childhood Services”
KVRR – “The United Way Hosts Women UNITED Luncheon”
WDAY – “Local Women Help Thousands of Kids with United Way’s 17th Annual Women United Luncheon”

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