by Chelsea Nelson

Interactive Communications Director

As you may have read on our blog and social media, last week was United Way of Salt Lake’s Internal Campaign!  Once a year, UWSL employees dedicate an entire week to raising money for neighborhoods and communities! We are the kind of folks who like to walk the walk (if you know what I mean).

As part of our Internal Campaign this year, we were excited to have a new web component called Teamraiser, which allowed us to create personal fundraising pages and ask our friends and family to donate. As I was reading each of my co-workers pages, I was moved by how much each one of us really believes in what we are doing here.  I wanted to share some of what they wrote–and hopefully you can better understand why we are so passionate about the work we are doing here at United Way of Salt Lake!

We change the world. No seriously. Every day we change our little corner of the world. I get excited to go to work because I see the kids and families who have had their worlds changed. The whole idea of LIVING UNITED is that people are different, we have different philosophies, but when we come together we can truly change the odds, for not just one kid or family, but for whole communities.” 
–Sarah Trescott, Website Development Director

“I wanted to take a minute to tell you one reason why I give to United Way of Salt Lake.  I spend most of my work day at a computer, and while I love my job and recognize its importance to United Way of Salt Lake, it’s still easy to get jealous of the employees spending more time out in the community. But recently the organization provided me with the opportunity to tour our Community Learning Center at Oquirrh Hills Elementary. During this fun and busy afternoon, I got to meet Luis, a volunteer extraordinario from Latinos in Action….Giving through Tim’s Donation Station is the easiest and most powerful way to invest in Luis, the kids he mentors, and more. Regardless of what portion of your allowance you are able to give, your investment makes long-lasting changes throughout the community.”
-Tim Harrison, Database Administrator

“I have worked for non-profits ever since I graduated from college. I love working for a mission, being part of a team that wants to change the world, yet it wasn’t until UWSL became a Collective Impact organization that I felt like community level change was actually possible. The Collective Impact model is built on the knowledge that no organization working alone, in isolation, can solve complex community issues. It takes a united effort to achieve large-scale, long-term social change. All sectors of the community must come together, because everyone has an important role to play in finding solutions using common goals and objectives.”
–Elizabeth Garbe, Community Impact Director of Public Policy

“I have worked for United Way of Salt Lake for 4+ years and today I still believe in and strongly support the work we are doing in the community.  Through my position as the Senior Resource Development Executive, I get to see first hand not only the generous donors who give, but also the individuals and families who are being helped.  As a single mom, for me every penny counts, but I know that when I give, it is doing so much for somebody else who needs it more than we do By giving up one lunch or dinner eating out every two weeks, I can give something back to my community.” –Cristi Wetterberg, Senior Resource Development Executive

“UWSL has now adopted a Collective Impact approach which means that we work as the backbone organization to get other community organizations, business, religious groups, and other nonprofits all on the same page to make the most significant impact we can.  The results have been amazingly impactful and I know you will want to be a part of this change. It is so exciting and I honestly get a little teary-eyed when we talk about it here at work and the changes that we are seeing.  Because we are sharing data with other organizations and neighborhood centers, we can actually see the NUMBERS in regards to the difference we are making in people’s lives.”
–Chelsea Nelson, Interactive Communications Director

“I love my job. Seriously, I don’t know if it’s possible to love a job as much as I do. Yeah it’s tough and hectic sometimes, but it’s worth it because I’m inspired by, and wholeheartedly believe in the work UWSL is engaged in. It’s work that WILL change the odds for entire communities.”
–Stacey Earle, Office Manager

As you can see, we believe in our mission!

Thank you to everyone who supported our staff this last week and donated to our personal fundraising pages!  We had such a great time competing against one another, yelling out each time someone donated on our behalf, and encouraging each other to get more donations!  Seeing the end result was humbling.

Our goal, as an entire organization, was to raise $43,000 in one week.  Between the silent auction, purchasing opportunity drawing tickets, a potluck competition, Teamraiser donations, and pledging donations for the year, I am excited to announce that WE BEAT OUR GOAL (had a lot of fun doing it!) and raised a total of $47,163 in 4 days.  We celebrated in style with a fun party at Liberty Park where our grand totals were announced and the GRAND PRIZE was given away.  Congratulations to Elizabeth Garbe who won the trip to HAWAII (we are all so jealous)!!

Every staff member at UWSL should give themselves a hand for participating and giving back–I am proud to work with such a great team of people who believe in our work and support our organization outside of daily job commitments. You all inspire me!

Thank you to everyone who donated items for our silent auction and/or amazing giveaways!  Your generosity is heartwarming and you truly helped to make our week fantastic!