What We Do

FINANCIAL STABILITY

FOR EVERY PERSON.

WE’RE ON A MISSION TO END FINANCIAL INSTABILITY.

United Way of Whatcom County partners with local nonprofit organizations to provide a path out of poverty for our friends and neighbors who struggle financially. We know that the reasons for financial instability vary from person to person. And that sometimes, people may need help in more than one area to get back on their feet. By funding a diverse network of organizations, we unite a community safety net of lifechanging programs and services to help folks get back on their feet and stay there. United Way strategically funds local nonprofits that operate within one of the following three impact areas:

Path out of poverty graphic 2

Meeting Basics Needs

Stability starts with access to safe housing, nutritious meals, and health and mental health services. Individuals who struggle to meet their most basic needs aren’t able to focus on improving their financial situation. United, we remove barriers to accessing food, housing, and other basic needs, so that our friends and neighbors can focus on taking steps along the pathway to possibility. 

Improving Economic Mobility

United Way partners with several agencies that provide vocational training and financial literacy programs to help individuals coming from economic hardship get better paying jobs to support themselves and their families. We also partner with several agencies that provide sliding scale childcare so that parents can go to work knowing their children are safe and cared for.

Breaking Cycles of Poverty

With basic needs met and financial struggles alleviated, individuals and families can focus on the future by addressing and breaking cycles of poverty. United Way partners with several local organizations that provide after school programs, mental health services, abuse prevention and parenting programs to help end negative patterns and set future generations up for success!

No one agency can do it alone. But United, we can create a better Whatcom County for all.

When you give to United Way, your dollars are stretched as far as they can possibly go to do the most good in our community! One gift to United Way of Whatcom County supports 25 local nonprofit agencies that are disrupting the cycle of poverty and helping our friends and neighbors who are struggling get to a better place!

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library

As part of our work to improve financial stability in our community, United Way of Whatcom County funds and manages Dolly Parton’s s Imagination Library for all of Whatcom County, helping set our littlest learners up for future academic and career success.

The Imagination Library is a low-barrier literacy program that provides high-quality, age-appropriate books every month for enrolled children under age 5 at no cost to families. 

Research shows that the mere presence of books in a home is associated with increased school readiness, deeper bonds with caregivers, better emotional regulation, and academic performance. By funding this program, we are helping set our kids and families up for long-term success in the classroom and beyond. 

dolly with kids ig 1
dolly with kids ig 1

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library

As part of our work to improve financial stability in our community, United Way of Whatcom County funds and manages Dolly Parton’s s Imagination Library for all of Whatcom County, helping set our littlest learners up for future academic and career success.

The Imagination Library is a low-barrier literacy program that provides high-quality, age-appropriate books every month for enrolled children under age 5 at no cost to families. 

Research shows that the mere presence of books in a home is associated with increased school readiness, deeper bonds with caregivers, better emotional regulation, and academic performance. By funding this program, we are helping set our kids and families up for long-term success in the classroom and beyond. 

Pennies 1

Did you know?

Nearly 2/5 Whatcom County households can’t afford the basics. According to the most recent ALICE data, 38% of households in our community struggle to make ends meet.

United for ALICE

United for ALICE is a grassroots movement led by United Way of Northern New Jersey that provides a focused and measured understanding of financial struggle across our country and in our community. Unlike the severely outdated Federal Poverty Level, this groundbreaking research paints a more specific and accurate picture of who is getting by and who isn’t, and why. 

By using ALICE data, we are better able to understand the need in our community and tailor targeted solutions to help alleviate Whatcom County’s most pressing issues. In addition to providing funding for community programs and services, United Way of Whatcom County helps fund this critical research locally, providing a useful tool for all kinds of organizations working to help evaluate and address the complex issues we are facing. 

Learn more about ALICE in Whatcom County below.

Your money stays local.

When you donate to United Way of Whatcom County, your donation stays local. We work with local nonprofit organizations to turn your money into valuable services that move individuals and families from poverty to possibility. 

We vet nonprofits and allocate funds for you.

With so much need in our community, it can be hard to know how to make a difference. 

This is the beauty of collective impact.

By making one gift to United Way of Whatcom County, you get to give to 25 local nonprofits at once, all of whom are providing critical services, helping our community’s most vulnerable individuals and families reach a more stable place. Each agency is carefully vetted and provides regular reporting on their work and how funds are being spent, so you can rest assured your generous donation is being put to good use!

washington map
washington map

Your money stays local.

When you donate to United Way of Whatcom County, your donation stays local. We work with local nonprofit organizations to turn your money into valuable services that move individuals and families from poverty to possibility. 

We vet nonprofits and allocate funds for you.

With so much need in our community, it can be hard to know how to make a difference. 

This is the beauty of collective impact.

By making one gift to United Way of Whatcom County, you get to give to 25 local nonprofits at once, all of whom are providing critical services, helping our community’s most vulnerable individuals and families reach a more stable place. Each agency is carefully vetted and provides regular reporting on their work and how funds are being spent, so you can rest assured your generous donation is being put to good use!