How Do We Invest?

United Way of Northeast Louisiana fights for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in our community. We do so through investing in our Collaboratives, Initiatives, and Partner Programs.

We believe it’s important to bring all voices to the table to find solutions for the challenges facing our region; therefore, in February 2017, United Way of Northeast Louisiana volunteers and staff embarked on a Listening Tour, facilitating feedback from local people to gain a deeper understanding of what their aspirations are for our community. 

The Listening Tour included over 560 local people in more than 75 eye-opening conversations across five area parishes, providing a unique opportunity for community members to share their thoughts and provide feedback, while enabling us to gather a broad range of perspectives.

After extensive analysis from a Strategic Planning Committee, volunteers, and United Way staff, several definitive themes emerged across all the conversations, including:

  • A Safe Community with Less Crime, Violence, and Substance Abuse
  • More Unity and Equality with People Working Together
  • Need for a Well-Educated and Workforce-Ready Community
  • A Healthy Community
  • Community Growth and Economic Development 
  • Need to Address Poverty and Homelessness
  • Increased Community Involvement and Awareness

United Way NELA's Strategic Planning Committee used these themes to develop Community Impact goals and strategies to address issues community members are most passionate about.

Children, Youth, and Young Adults Successful in School and Life

  • Children Enter School Ready
  • Students are Successful in Elementary School and prepared for middle/secondary school
  • Youth gain the knowledge, skills, and credentials so that they are prepared for the workforce and are able to obtain family sustaining employment

Economic Opportunity for All

  • Individuals and families have adequate and sustainable resources to support their needs
  • Individuals and families have the skills, knowledge, relationships, and economic pathways they need to effectively increase and manage their income
  • Vulnerable populations maximize their ability to live with independence and dignity
  • People/organizations continue to work together to support a thriving, prosperous, robust economy

Healthy and Safe Individuals, Families, and Community

  • Families/individuals live in a healthy and safe environment
  • People/organizations work together to strengthen and build a more inclusive community

Once Community Impact goals were established, the United Way NELA's Strategic Planning Committee began digging deeper to work on establishing targeted Bold Goals, milestones designed to achieve specific results by 2025. 

Strategic Planning Committee volunteers continue to work toward laying the framework for Bold Goals that 
address issues in education, economic opportunity, as well as healthy, safe families and individuals.