What Is Community Investment?
Through the Community Investment Process, United Way of West Florida donors make recommendations on how undesignated donations should be invested in local nonprofit programs serving Escambia and Santa Rosa counties. If you've donated at any level this past year, you are eligible to serve as a Community Investment Panelist and help decide how donations from thousands of donors are invested in our community.
Let's break it all down.
When you donate to United Way of West Florida without specifying a cause (or making an undesignated gift, as we like to call it), your donation is set aside for Community Investment grant funding.
Each year, local nonprofit agencies apply to become Certified Partners of United Way of West Florida. Through this process, United Way reviews each applicant agency's financial records and nonprofit status to ensure that the agency has the stability and capacity to operate efficiently and effectively.
Once certified, agencies can apply for Community Investment grant funding -- this is the money that you entrust in United Way of West Florida to continue making Escambia and Santa Rosa counties stronger, healthier, and more equitable communities.
Each spring, as we prepare for the Community Investment Process, United Way of West Florida donors (of any amount) volunteer to serve as Community Investment Panelists. These volunteer donors are trained to review agency applications, tour program sites, and collectively determine which programs receive funding to meet community needs.
But we don't stop there. After grant awards have been distributed, selected programs submit quarterly reports detailing measurable outcomes, and we report that data to you -- our donors and stakeholders.
Are you interested in learning more or serving as a Community Investment Panelist? Contact our Director of Community Impact, Mary Zaledonis.