CHARLOTTE – United Way of Greater Charlotte unveiled a new name Jan. 12 as it announced its 2023 investment of $16 million in communities across the Charlotte region.

United Way awarded $9 million in grants to 132 neighborhood and grassroots organizations working to lift families  out of poverty and improve economic mobility. 

The investment includes more than $5 million from the City of Charlotte as part of collaborative  efforts to provide housing and services for people experiencing homelessness. The remaining $2 million  represents United Way community investments and donor-directed funding for nonprofits. 

The investment reflects the funding strategy United Way has phased in over the past several years, a  shift the organization made after Charlotte ranked last in economic mobility among 50 metropolitan cities nationally. 

“Five years ago, United Way of Greater Charlotte started a journey to align our investment strategy with the community’s most pressing needs to create lasting change,” said Laura Yates Clark, United Way  president and CEO. “We couldn‘t do this without the extraordinary support of corporate, individual and  public-sector donors – and the countless agencies working every day to create opportunities for all  people.”  

Formerly known as United Way of Central Carolinas, the organization changed its name to more clearly  identify the region it serves, which includes Mecklenburg, Cabarrus, Anson and Union counties. 

“‘Greater Charlotte’ evokes a more specific geography than ‘Central Carolinas’ did, and better connects people to where their dollars are going to help people in need,” Clark said. 

United Way’s $9 million in grants will go toward three pillars to improve economic mobility and racial  equity.  


United Neighborhoods

Its United Neighborhoods program will dramatically expand, with an investment of $4.9 million in more  than 50 neighborhoods – up from $1.3 million and three neighborhoods last year. The program aligns  with the City of Charlotte’s six “Corridors of Opportunity” and also includes northern Mecklenburg  County.

United Neighborhoods empowers residents in “historically disinvested communities” to identify aspirations for their communities and the nonprofit organizations they believe can best deliver neighborhood-focused services to help them achieve those goals. 

The funding will go to 70 agencies working in the corridor neighborhoods including United Neighborhood’s original focus in Grier Heights, Lakeview and Renaissance West. 

“United Way of Greater Charlotte is addressing complex problems such as economic mobility and racial  inequity through bold, fresh solutions,” said Board Chair Dee O’Dell, an executive vice president at U.S. Bank. “In response to our community’s desire to produce lasting change and empower those closest to  

our challenges, we have brought new agency partners to the table to collaboratively create  opportunities to help all children and families thrive.” 


United Charlotte

United Way’s Unite Charlotte program will invest nearly $3 million in 55 agencies in 2023 – thanks to  continued funding by Mecklenburg County, as well as corporate and private donations. Unite Charlotte  provides grants and capacity-building support to grassroots organizations founded and led by people of  color. The funding helps support their mission and work, increase their impact, and grow a more diverse  and inclusive pipeline of nonprofit leaders in Charlotte. 


Regional Investments

Regional Investments totaling more than $873,000 will fund 27 nonprofits in Anson, Cabarrus and Union counties, to support needs identified by residents in each community. 

Funding will support  mental wellness in Cabarrus County; housing stability, food security, childhood literacy and mentoring  programs in Anson County; and housing stability, food security, the intellectual developmental  disability community, childhood literacy, mentoring programs and access to affordable and quality healthcare in Union County.


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