Community Impact

By Trista Stout-Walker, Vice President of Community Impact

2022, oh my my! It is a new year that brings new possibilities. It also brings the same problems and barriers from 2021. UWSWA’s Community Impact Outlook strives to offer new solution or supports to the residents of UWSWA’s four county footprint. For example, UWSWA and 211 has partnered with Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) and Mobile County Health Department (MCHD) to offer Covid-19 quarantine support. We are working to eliminate the financial burden that quarantining may create. This is an old problem, but we are tailoring our impact to provide solutions. A full list of quarantine supports can be found on our Covid-19 information page. If you are in need of Covid quarantine support, please dial 2-1-1.

By Trista Stout-Walker, Vice President of Community Impact

My favorite holiday song is Let it Snow. I know, to live in South Alabama and dream of snow is far-fetched, but I have personal experience with snow. As a child, we lived on a strawberry farm in Benton, Maine for about a year. I remember the snow and the experience through the eyes of the child. I would walk out into the yard and sink into the snow up to my waist. I even owned a snowsuit, one very similar to the one featured in A Christmas Story.

By Trista Stout-Walker, Vice President of Community Impact

Let’s talk about connections. One of the highlights of living in a small town is that everybody knows everybody, and you are connected to everyone that you encounter in some way, shape, or form. I have a personal theory that in the South, it is 3° of separation. These connections play a vital role in access to information and services.

By Trista Stout-Walker, Vice President of Community Impact

I love a good screen shot of an uplifting message from social media. While preparing for this blog, I was inspired by a quote from William James, “Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.” In October, many causes celebrate “awareness month,” and many are near and dear to my heart. While spreading awareness, you may participate in a walk to raise funds for breast cancer research or wear purple on October 21st for Domestic Violence Awareness. These simple acts serve as outreach and conversation starters. You are planting the seed of your advocacy and service within another person. I classify these moments as small victories!

By Trista Stout-Walker, Vice President of Community Impact

Just like you, I am simply a person. A person who every morning prays for guidance, strength, health, and grace. Grace has been a lifesaver these past 18 months. Grace provides us with the ability to accept people where they are and offer support and kindness. Each of us has faced some form of adversity in our daily lives. For those suffering from addiction or depression, this is a daily struggle. This struggle may be hidden and paired with a feeling of hopelessness or loss.

On Thursday, September 23 and Friday, September 24, Mobile County Volunteer Organizations Active in Disasters (VOAD) and the United Way of Southwest Alabama (UWSWA) will host a Hurricane Ida Resource Fair at Central Presbyterian Church (1260 Dauphin Street, 36604) from 7am until 11 am. Several area nonprofits and government agencies will be on site to provide storm-related assistance to Hurricane Ida survivors and evacuees. Evacuees will also have the opportunity to speak to representatives regarding legal services, school registration, medical services, and many other important necessities.

By Trista Stout-Walker, Vice President of Community Impact

Your donations directly affect United Way of Southwest Alabama’s (UWSWA) investment in Southwest Alabama. UWSWA takes the generous supports from community members, businesses, and local foundations and converts funding into service opportunities. Opportunities like supporting a women experiencing homelessness a safe space at a local motel and food delivery until shelter is available at McKemie Place. Opportunities like a family having a location close to home that offers the Summer Feeding Program. Opportunities like mental health counseling available during school hours to assist children dealing with stress, anxiety, or trauma. Opportunities like 2,949 tax returns completed by the SAFE Coalition at no charge to the tax client. The list for opportunities provided by UWSWA and our partners can go on and on.

By Trista Stout-Walker, Vice President of Community Impact

Have you ever returned home from the grocery store and realized you forgot an important item or ingredient? It can be the most frustrating thing at times. Especially, when we spend time preparing for the trip, traveling to the store, shopping for goods, and returning home. For some in our catchment area that requires hours, substantial money, and resources. This is because they live in a “food desert”. According to Wikipedia, a food desert is an area that has limited access to affordable and nutritious food, in contrast with an area with higher access to supermarkets with fresh foods, which is called a food oasis.

By LaToya Stevens is the Marketing and Communications Director at Heart of Missouri United Way

Juneteenth (June 19) is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States. Today, Juneteenth commemorates African American freedom, and emphasizes education and achievement.

It’s celebrated across America with block parties, cookouts and educational events. You may not know the history of Juneteenth because until today, it has not been recognized as a federal holiday. If it’s not part of your culture, this may be your first time hearing about Juneteenth.

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