Good News Network May 2018


It's Time to Celebrate YOU!

United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona is gearing up for the  14th Annual Circle of Excellence Awards Luncheon. It's a time for us to celebrate our workplace campaigns and corporate partners who help us help Southern Arizona thrive. This year, we're holding the luncheon at the  JW Marriott Star Pass Resort on Thursday, May 17th from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. 

Here's a list of this year's award nominees:
LIVE UN ITED: CODAC Healthy Recovery, Pima Council on Aging, La Frontera
BUILDING A BETTER COMMUNITY: Citi, Target Fulfillment Center, QuikTrip
CORNERSTONE:  AGM Container Controls, QuikTrip, Caterpillar
YOUNG LEADERS SOCIETY COMPANY OF THE YEAR:  GEICO, Bank of America, Texas Instruments
CHAMPIONS OF CARING:  Freeport-McMoRan, Inc., GEICO, Jim Click Automotive Team
PARTNERSHIP:  City of Tucson ECAP & Communication Workers of America (CWA) 7000, Pima Community College-American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employee (AFSCME) Local 449, United Parcel Service Teamsters Local Union 104
BEST SMALL COMPANY:  Pima Council on Aging, Illinois Tool Works, Inc., BMO Harris Bank N.A.
BEST MEDIUM COMPANY:  AGM Container Controls, Team Fishel, QuikTrip
BEST LARGE COMPANY:  GEICO, Freeport-McMoRan, Inc., Citi
 People Profile: Meet Bruce Ayers

One of the people imperative to our workplace campaigns is Resource Development Officer Bruce Ayers. Bruce grew up in West Palm Beach, Florida and joined the U.S. Air Force upon graduation. He attended several colleges during his world travels, ultimately receiving his Bachelors of Science degree in Human Resources Management from Columbia Southern University. Bruce was assigned to Davis-Monthan AFB awhile back and enjoyed Tucson so much, he decided to return after his service. Now, he's pursuing an MBA while halfway through his 10th year at United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona. Here's a little more about Bruce. 
 
Tell me about your role with Resource Development  
My role as a Development Officer in RD, along with my
amazing teammates, is to tell the community's story with our great many corporate partners.  We then share how United Way strategizes with our tremendous program partners to create lasting measurable positive change in the areas of Education, Financial Stability and Healthy Communities.  Ultimately, we want everyone we are fortunate to connect with to realize change does not happen without them and then provide them with an opportunity to make an informed decision to join us in realizing our mission.    
 
Tell me about Circle of Excellence 
COE is a time of celebration!  So many great volunteers work tirelessly year round to make their workplace campaigns a success and this is our one time a year to celebrate them and their success in front of both  their peers and the entire community.  There's a DJ, photo booths, trophies and tambourines... and it all happens at lunchtime! Come one, come all!
 
What do you love most about what you do?    
I really love the opportunity to work hand in hand with so many great Tucsonans and Southern Arizonans!  I have had the opportunity to develop incredible friendships and relationships.  Donors, volunteers or corporate/program liaisons-everyone is truly invested in creating a better place to live for all.   
 
What do you love most about Southern Arizona?  
What's not to love about Southern Arizona?!  Lots of family, sunshine, amazing people and a great university ... all in a city that is really thriving!
VITA Helps Southern Arizona Thrive in 2018

We want to thank everyone who took part in making United Way's Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) a success, once again this year! Thousands turned out across the state to take advantage of our free tax preparation service. Locally, more than 120 caring individuals volunteered their time to ensure Southern Arizonans got the absolute most out of their returns. E veryone from college students to young professionals to folks who are well into their retirement helped by greeting and interviewing clients, serving as interpreters and preparing taxes. Learn more about VITA and how you can participate next year by

While we're still working on calculating our statewide totals, here is how we fared in Tucson:
  
Returns prepared: 3,594

Refunds: $2,841,809

Earned Income Tax  Credits (EITC) $1,268,222
The Power of Collective Impact

The Alexis de Tocqueville Society Spring Reception took place on Wednesday, April 25th at Hacienda Del Sol Guest Ranch.  75 people attended the bi-annual event. The theme for the evening was "The Power of Collective Impact."  Tocqueville members in attendance had the opportunity to speak with United Way Community Development staff about the impact their investments are having in Tucson and Southern Arizona.  We are grateful for everyone who attended making it a beautiful evening! Click here to learn more about the Tocqueville Society and future events. 
Having the Difficult Conversation

Many here in Southern Arizona recognize United Way as an organization that focuses on education and financial stability. But did you know that your local United Way is a leading organization focusing on another important issue that will impact every one of us? We're talking about death. And while it's not a comfortable subject, it's the focus of the End of Life Care Partnership. The partnership is a network of individuals and organizations committed to ensuring quality of life at every stage. So why is it so important to talk about death? Read what the End of Life Care Partnership Senior Director, Sarah Ascher has to say in her special to the AZ Daily Star by  clicking here.  
 Building a Thriving and Clean Community

For the third consecutive year, United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona employees celebrated Earth Day by cleaning up the Santa Cruz Wash and bike path. They gathered 14 large bags of trash! United Way is always searching for ways to become more sustainable, encouraging employees to use reusable water bottles and recently switching to reusable metal coffee stirrers. Have a suggestion on how we can go greener? Click here to email your idea. 
Young Leaders Get a Head Start on their Careers

United Way's Young Leaders Society (YLS) hosted a successful Headshots and Happy Hour last month at La Cocina. Thirty young professionals from businesses like  Raytheon, KOLD News 13, Texas Instruments and Caterpillar participated in the event, donating more than 50 items of professional clothing and $175. Those donations were collected for the Opportunity Youth Re-engagement center (REC) and clothing bank.  Headshots were offered by Jen Bee Photography. Click here to learn more about the work of YLS and its upcoming events. 
 Save the Date: Days of Caring

Mark your calendars! We have a date set for the single largest volunteer event in Southern Arizona. Please plan to join us for  United Way's 19th Annual Days of Caring event Friday, October 19th and Saturday, October 20th, 2018.  We are also teaming up with Hopefest on Saturday, October 27th. United Way's Days of Caring pairs local needs with caring residents to improve Southern Arizona one project at a time. Last year's event set a new record, with 4,100 volunteers showing up to participate in 122 projects all aimed at helping our community thrive. We plan to beat that record this year. You can help us by becoming a sponsor. Click here to email us for more information. Click here to see more photos from last year's event. 
Thanks for reading

If there are stories that you enjoyed or would like more information on, let us know. Also, if there are topics that we are not covering in our newsletter that you would like to see, please let us know!

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