Frequently Asked Questions:
Living United means recognizing we're all in this together & then acting on that knowledge.
Why should I support United Way?
When you give to United Way of Mid Coast Maine, you invest in your community.
United Way has the scope, expertise, and influence to bring together human service agencies, businesses, private foundations, government, and dedicated volunteers around a common vision of community impact and achieving long-lasting results.
What's the difference between United Way and other nonprofits?
United Way looks at the BIG picture. We understand that life is messy and issues are interconnected, so we focus on improving lives in 3 big areas: Education, Financial Stability, and Health. To do this, we mobilize volunteers and convene partner agencies, corporations, community leaders, and policymakers to make broad, systemic changes like no other organization can on its own. Our programs help people in crisis get back on their feet, help prevent future problems, and build a stronger community for all of us.
How do I volunteer?
Volunteering is a great way to make an impact in your community. For a list of opportunities throughout Maine, visit Get Connected. If you're interested in volunteering at a specific agency, check their website or give them a call. If you'd like ideas, contact Maria at United Way.
How do I advocate?
We all advocate when we talk about what is important to us and our community. You can advocate for United Way when you tell the people in your life why you support us. There are also opportunities to advocate at the policy level. We are lucky to have some key individuals in our area who advocate on behalf of Mid Coast children at the state level, including Bath Police Chief Mike Field, Lincoln County Sheriff Joel Merry, and United Way's Director of Community Impact, Peter Lindsay.
Who decides how you invest in the community?
Knowledgeable volunteers and experts from our community carefully screen and select the programs funded by your contribution. Their recommendations are reviewed and approved by our volunteer Board of Directors.
How do I start an employee campaign?
Contact Campaign Director, Tom Blatz. Workplace campaigns are a wonderful way to engage your employees in bettering life in the Mid Coast, and when you offer a workplace campaign that benefits United Way, you are putting out the message that you care about our community and its future. Another way to help United Way's annual campaign is by loaning an employee in September and October to support workplace campaigns, give speeches, and rally support for United Way. We call these exciting people Loaned Executives and would love to offer this opportunity to your employees. Call Tom Blatz for more information.
What's the difference between designated and undesignated gifts?
A designated gift restricts your gift to a specific 501(c)3 organization.
An undesignated gift goes to the Community Fund, taking advantage of United Way's thorough, research-based program selection that gets the money to the issues and areas that need it most. This allows you to help the most people and do the most good for our entire community.
Can I give directly to my favorite charity through United Way?
You can designate your gift to a specific health and human service nonprofit agency in Maine, but when you choose to give to United Way's Community Fund you choose the best way to achieve results and make a difference right here in Mid Coast Maine. Your gift does more than support people who are in urgent need right now - you also support meaningful, lasting change that impacts all of us.
Does United Way support religious agencies?
There are some religiously affiliated organizations that provide human care programs. United Way policy prohibits the direct support of churches but does support church-sponsored organizations that are providing social services. An example is the SEARCH program of Catholic Charities, which pairs isolated elders with volunteers who provide companionship and transportation.
What if I'm afraid to commit to a pledge because of the economy?
There is no question that people are nervous about the economy, and yet there is also no question that there is potential to improve lives in our community. As you consider your pledge, please know that there is no gift too small and no gift too big. A contribution, whether it's $1 a week or a Leadership gift of $500+ per year, will be a valuable gift to the Mid Coast Maine community. When everyone does their part, we can keep our community healthy and thriving.
What do I do if I or someone I know needs help?
Call 2-1-1 or visit 211maine.org
More information about 2-1-1