How We Help
- BOLD Goal 1: Reduce Hunger and Homelessness
- BOLD Goal 2: Prepare Children to Succeed
- BOLD Goal 3: Help People be Independent
- BOLD Goal 4: Lift People Out of Poverty
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- Form - Final
- A Letter to United Way Supporters
- LIVE UNITED: BE THE ONE 2013 Campaign Kick-Off
- 2013 Women's Leadership Luncheon
- 2014 Day of Caring Volunteer Event & Thank You
- 2013 LIVE UNITED T-Shirt Day
- Welcome to Our New Website!
- Watch Roger Staubach's first United Way commercial and others from the last 40 years here
- USA WEEKEND Magazine sponsors Make A Difference Day
- See who sported their t's for 2013 LIVE UNITED Tshirt Day
- Black Friday. Cyber Monday. Giving Tuesday. LIVE UNITED Today!
- U.S. Bank Employees get "pie-d" for United Way to celebrate their outstanding campaign
- Announcing...Our 2014 United Way 35 Under 35 Women's Leadership Program Participants
- United Way's new approach is intended to give donors a better picture of their return on investment
- It's not about CHARITY. It's about CHANGE.
- United Way teams up with Target to Share-A-Tree with families in need
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- 1 more step toward quality child care: North Dakota launches Bright & Early North Dakota statewide
- 2013 Campaign Announcement Media Event & Thank you Reception
- Now Accepting Nominations for the 2013 Fredrick W. Donath Campaign Award
- We have achieved and exceeded our 2013 Campaign Goal of $5.2 million!
- It's tax time! What you need to know about preparing your tax return with your gift to United Way
- Congratulations to our 2013 BE THE ONE Award Winners!
- 2014 Annual Meeting and Celebration of ONE
- Did you miss the 2014 Annual Meeting and Celebration of ONE?
- The Power of Community Involvement
- United Way Celebrates National Volunteer Week
- Individualism or the Common Good? We need both.
- May 10 is the National Letter Carriers' Food Drive and YOU can help!
- Education That Works: Educational Leaders, the Economic Development Corporation, and United Way
- United Way Celebrates May Day by Celebrating Education
- Launching "Education that Works" for students, teachers and our future workforce
- United Way announces 2015-2016 investments in Community Partners providing Basic Needs
- $ 5 lunch on Thursday at all Hornbacher's locations! Gobble It Up for United Way
- A letter from our 2014 Board Chair, Mark Jensen-Thanks from the United Way
- 16th Annual School Supply Drive kicks off today-donation and volunteer info!
- REGISTER TO VOLUNTEER FOR SCHOOL SUPPLY DRIVE HERE
- You are invited to the 2014 United Way Kick Off Event on September 9 featuring Hugh Weber
- The 2014 Campaign Materials are ready for you! Check 'em out!
- YOUNG PEOPLE, UNITE! The NEW Emerging Leaders in Giving Program has launched
- Applications for the 2015 35 Under 35 Women's Leadership Program are now available
- Volunteer registration is now open for the 2014 Day of Caring
- Join nearly 700 women to support United Way's work in EDUCATION on Nov 6-EVENT IS SOLD OUT
- UNITED for Jefferson Neighborhood
- 23rd Annual Day of Caring
- 35 Under 35 Alumni come together for Women’s Build for Habitat for Humanity
- Want to Stay Active and Improve Your Health as You Grow Older? Volunteer!
- Want to Stay Active and Improve Your Health as You Grow Older? Volunteer!
- Want to see what lasting change looks like?
- Monte’s Downtown launches DINE UNITED in partnership with United Way
- West Acres - BOOtiful Night: Trick or Treating
- Watch videos of the 2014 Kick Off Event
- United Way of Cass-Clay collaborates to lead first-ever regional workforce study
- 2014 LIVE UNITED T-Shirt Day
- US Bank Reveals Campaign Total
- Giving THANKS to our Volunteers!
- Essentia employee gets a VIP limo ride to work as part of United Way Campaign
- Proudly announcing the 2015 participants of the United Way 35 Under 35 Women's Leadership Program
- United Way of Cass-Clay has officially reached the $3.5 million mark on our way to the 2014 campaign
- United Way Partners with Target to spread holiday cheer
- Join us for Coffee and 2014 Campaign Results on Feb 6
- 5 Reasons to Celebrate Volunteer Mentors
- Join us for the 2015 Annual Meeting and Volunteer Awards Featuring Keynote Speaker Wes Moore
- Now Accepting Nominations for the 2014 Frederick W. Donath Campaign Award
- Mission Gratitude: Mission Accepted
- The 2014 Annual Report to the Community has been officially released!
- United Way welcomes new board members in 2015
- Volunteers Meet to Launch 2015 Campaign Cabinet
- May 1st Brings 4th Annual May Day Baskets of Books!
- Local Organizations Receive National Recognition from United Way
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- Regional Workforce Study Results Announced-United Way to Take Action to Address Workforce Challenges
- Millennials Move Mountains
- 2015 School Supply Drive - How to Donate & Receive Supplies
- 2015 School Supply Drive Equips 5,260 Students for the School Year
- YOUR IRA CHARITABLE CONTRIBUTION WILL HELP IMPROVE LIVES IN OUR COMMUNITY.
- MISSION GRATITUDE: Congrats to our LIVE UNITED Award Nominees!
- Introducing the nominees of the NEW “LIVE UNITED Catalyst of the Year” Award
- United Way names Kristi Huber as President
- Now accepting nominations for the 2016 LIVE UNITED Leader of the Year Award
- United Way makes new investment to help West Fargo students access mental health services
- ALL VOLUNTEER SHIFTS FULL - 2017 School Supply Drive
- 2017 United Way Day of Caring Volunteer Event
- You won't want to miss our Kick Off Event on Sept 14
- Applications for 2018 United Way 35 Under 35 Women's Leadership Program available on September 1
- 17th Annual United Way Women United Luncheon & Silent Auction
- A Day in the Life: A Perspective on Poverty
- 8th Annual Roers/Keller Williams Chili Feed is Happening on Oct 3rd!
- Collaborative Investments Are Helping Rural Students Access Mental Health Services
- Generosity Is the Strength of Our Community
- LIVE UNITED T-Shirt Day & United Acts of Kindness on November 10th
- United Way Focuses on Investing to Help People Be Independent
- 800 Women UNITE to Help Give Kids the Very Best Start
- A Sign Is Worth A Thousand Words
- 2018 35 Under 35 Women's Leadership Class Announced!
- Get Informed and then Advocate...Learn More About Poverty in Our Community
- Emerging Leaders Turn Inspiration Into Action
- Call All Volunteers: Join Our Community Investment Review Panel!
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- Here's What You Need to Know About Claiming Your United Way Donation This tax season
- And The Nominees Are.....
- How You Can be an Advocate for Student Mental Health in Your Community!
- Check out the 2017 United Way Annual Report to the Community!
- JUST ANNOUNCED: 2018 United Way Top 50 Most Generous Workplaces
- Congratulations to the LIVE UNITED Award Winners!
- How VITA is helping hard working tax payers receive more on their tax returns
- Register for the 2018 35 Under 35 Celebration Ceremony on June 7
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- A Lesson In Leadership
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- 7th Annual Women UNITED May Day Baskets of Books Event
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- Gobble It Up Pre-Orders OPEN!
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- Eggs & Issues: The State of Local Child Care & Its Impact on Workforce Development
- 20th Annual United Way School Supply Drive - ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW!
- Join us for the 2018 United Way Kick Off Event!
- 2019 35 Under 35 Women's Leadership Program Applications Now Available!
- 2018 Women UNITED Luncheon & Silent Auction
- 35 Women With One Thing In Common, A Desire to Make A Difference: United Way's 35 Under 35 Program
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- 2018 LIVE UNITED T-shirt & UNITED Acts of Kindness Day
- 2018 Campaign Video: I Wish My Teacher Knew
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- Here’s What You Need to Know About Claiming Your United Way Donation This tax season
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- Join us to Recognize Generosity in Our Community!
- And The Nominees Are...
- United Way of Cass-Clay: James' Story
- Congratulations to the LIVE UNITED Awards Winners!
- JUST ANNOUNCED: 2019 United Way Top 50 Most Generous Workplaces
- Community Collaborations: United Way Receives Presidents' Award for Community Partner
- Inviting all ECC's to attend ECC Engage The Power of Community on May 7 & 8
- Women UNITE to Share a Love of Learning
- Help Encourage Kids to Succeed on Their First Day of School
- The Route to Removing Barriers for Employment - United Way Helps Expand Transportation Services
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- A Backpacks Impact: The United Way School Supply Drive
- Will You Accept the Women UNITED Challenge?!
- Register now for the 2019 Kick Off Event on September 18
- Home For Good: Give Now to Help Welcome Families Home - For Good.
- Location Unveiled for the Future Home of United Way of Cass-Clay
- Watch the Community Kickoff Event
- Roers Chili Feed – Get your Cup of Chili Sept 15-29
- LIVE UNITED Give United Day
- Taking Action to Help Families in Need - How the Coronavirus Response Fund is Helping
Homelessness is one of the biggest challenges our community faces, and with your help, United Way is working to solve this challenge.
In our daily lives we may not see or notice the struggles with homelessness that so many children and families experience, but they're real. Homelessness is such an important topic for our community to discuss because it’s an easy one to avoid — especially when we’ve all been staying closer to home.
How many people are homeless in our community?
On any given night here in our local community, 1,022 people are homeless.
These 1,022 people are parents, children, teenagers, senior citizens, friends and neighbors – each one a human being who deserves chance and opportunity.
When you picture a person who is homeless, what face comes to mind? Who are they? What do they look like? Do you picture a man downtown on a bench? A woman on a street corner? A mom and her son? It may be surprising to many of us to know that of those who are homeless in our community, 23% are children. In the Fargo Public School district alone, during last year’s 2019-2020 school year, nearly 240 children were identified as homeless.
How do we prevent homelessness for local children and families?
At United Way instead of asking the question, How do we help the homeless? or How do we make sure people who are homeless have a safe place to live? We started thinking about this community issue differently. Instead, we asked: What if we prevented homelessness from ever happening in the first place?
At United Way, innovation is important to us when we work to solve our communities’ biggest issues – instead of trying to solve a problem that exists, we are working to prevent the problem from ever happening.
How? We invite you to watch and see.
In this video, we saw how oftentimes it's a crisis that can be the first step in a family becoming homeless. In this woman’s story, it was a job loss but it could be a medical emergency, a mental health issue, or the death of a family member or loved one.
Often times these crises spiral, and there is a domino effect that causes a family to become homeless. The stress and trauma these families experience can often create a vicious cycle that lasts for generations.
Children who experience homelessness in their childhood, are more likely to experience homelessness as an adult, and the cycle continues.
How can you help?
We can't stop bad things from happening, but what we can do is unite as a community and change how we provide support and services.
United Way brought together community partners and national consultants to blueprint how we can make this a reality right here in our community. The solution is providing the right help at the right time – and we can do that, with your help.
We need your help. We need you. We are working to rally the community and invite you to give to United Way so we can hire Housing Stability Specialists to make this work and this goal a reality in our community, and ensure that the 1,022 of our neighbors who experience homelessness on any given night have the right support at the right time.
This is an exciting time for our community. We can come together. Defy the odds. Rise up in the face of challenge.
What is the goal?
Our goal is to work together as a community to prevent 90% of families and children from becoming homeless by 2023.
This a big goal. This is a bold goal. And like any large goal, it takes teamwork to accomplish.
This goal will take teamwork from our shelters and youth drop-in centers, and all of us supporting our homeless shelters, too. It is a community-wide strategy spanning so many partners working to help people in our community experiencing homelessness.
A Challenge and An Opportunity
Preventing homelessness for children and families is both a challenge and an opportunity. Hear from our 2010 Volunteer Campaign Chair, Chris Barta from Marvin, as he shares his perspective.
Achieving this goal means understanding the challenges that many families face on a daily basis.
Jan Anderson is the Title I Coordinator and Homeless Liaison for Fargo Public Schools, and works with students and families experiencing homelessness on a daily basis.
“Usually, before we even start school, we have 60 to 70 kids that are self-referred and are identified as homeless,” she said. When the 2019/2020 school year concluded, nearly 240 students were identified as having experienced homelessness throughout the year.
Sarah Kennedy, Homeless Prevention and Diversion Director for Presentation Partners in Housing, has worked for 15 years with families who are in a housing crisis for nearly 15 years, and echoes the need for help to be shifted from management to prevention.
“We know that no one agency can end homelessness alone – we will do this work in partnership with organizations across our community, all working toward the same goal to prevent homelessness for children and families,” she said.
The Weekly Need is Great
Each week, an average of 80 to 100 applications from families in crisis are reviewed. During the second week in September of 2020, 92 households applied for assistance with a housing crisis. These households were either at risk of becoming homeless, or already living in a homeless shelter, their vehicle, or outdoors. After a crucial review by the Housing Stability Specialists, 12 households, or only 13% were able to receive help and assistance to prevent them from becoming homeless, or help gain stable housing.
Eighty households were unable to receive help, which means many of them would become homeless within the next several days and weeks, or continue to live in the homeless shelter, outdoors, in their vehicle, doubled up, or in unsafe and unfit living conditions.
Sharing the Story: A Community-Wide Effort
As we continue to shine a light on homelessness, in October 2020, Robin Huebner at The Forum, published a two-part multi-media article and video series was released, which culminated with a live virtual townhall on homelessness in our area. Our very own Thomas Hill, VP of Community Impact, served as a panel member, alongside local experts on the issue.
Part 1: Pandemic compounds the pain for F-M homeless population: In part one of the series, The Forum examines the state of homelessness in the metro and how families and children are coping with housing instability during a pandemic.
Part 2: Here's the strategy for ending homelessness in F-M and why everyone has a stake in it: In part two of the series, The Forum looks at how community partners are working to prevent homelessness.
A live, virtual townhall was also held on October 14 which allowed the community to hear first-hand from several agencies involved in helping our area’s homeless population.
When you invest with United Way of Cass-Clay, you help prevent families from becoming homeless. Together, as a community, we can help prevent children from every experiencing the trauma of homelessness.
Michelle and Olivia’s Story
Meet Michelle and Olivia. Imagine having a child born with a congenital heart defect and in need of live-saving surgery within their first year of life. Now imagine facing surgery and recovery while homeless.
That is exactly the experience of Michelle, and her daughter Olivia, who live in our community. After trying to escape an unhealthy relationship, Michelle and her daughter Olivia were homeless and living in their car when little Olivia needed surgery to repair her heart. Recovery for Olivia was stressful, difficult and risky, even more so without a place to call home.
When families experiencing homelessness have a health crisis, it becomes challenging to heal and regain the health that impacts them each and every day. With your help, we can help families like Michelle’s at their point of need and prevent them from becoming homeless.
Amanda is a mom to Ben and Andrew who go to middle school in West Fargo. They have been homeless for two years. Her and her boys have bounced between her brother’s home and staying with her ex-boyfriend, neither of which were healthy or safe living situations.
Not giving up hope, and with a sense of determination, Amanda has tried numerous times to get back on her feet. But because of her past she has been denied 5 apartments. For two years, her boys worried about where they would sleep and where they would get ready for school each morning, as it was constantly changing.
Imagine if a Housing Stability Specialist was able to help Amanda at her point of need and crisis. Her young sons would never have to experience the trauma of homelessness. Her family would never have to stay the night in a homeless shelter. Her boys would have the opportunity to go to school well-rested and prepared, and grow up in a stable home. How would Amanda’s story be different? Together, united as a community, we can change the story for families like Amanda’s.
Carla is a mom in our community who lives with her 8-year-old daughter, Jada. Earlier this year, Carla was diagnosed with cancer and needed surgery and extensive treatment in Minneapolis. As she traveled for her care, Carla was unable to work and lost her job. Because of Carla’s compromised immunity and the pandemic, her doctor would not sign off for her to return to work, as it isn’t safe.
The family has been through so much, so it was devastating when they received an eviction notice for unpaid rent. In addition to trying to recover from cancer, Carla was desperate and fearful of losing her home, and was at risk of being homeless. Jada wondered if she was going to lose her mom to cancer, and now was wondering if she was going to love her mom, and her home, too.
Carla was able to connect with Sarah, a Housing Stability Specialist made possible by United Way of Cass-Clay. This trained and caring individual worked closely with Carla’s property manager to provide rent assistance to give time for Carla to recover, and stop the eviction process. Carla’s fears of losing her apartment and being homeless with her daughter melted away. Carla never had to enter a homeless shelter in our community, and Jada never had to stay the night in a shelter. Because Carla had the right specialist at the right time, she and her daughter avoided homelessness.
Today, Carla continues to receive cancer treatment, but is showing progress and results. With the fear of becoming homeless behind her, Carla feels hopeful that she will have time to recover, return to work, and be able to just focus on being Jada’s mom again. Carla’s story is an example of the power of community, and how we can all work together to help.