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Summer Volunteer Opportunities in Asheville With summer in full swing, there are endless opportunities to enjoy the outdoors while getting involved in community service projects that allow you to experience new parts of our city and county while meeting new people. Our volunteer center, Hands On Asheville-Buncombe, makes it easy to get involved with local nonprofit organizations.    With hundreds of opportunities available each month, it's easy... Read More
Meet Jocelin Rosas New United Way Community School Coordinator for Erwin Middle School   Jocelin (pronounced Jo and Celine as in Celine Dionne, she says) or JoRo for short, as her teacher’s at UNC Asheville called her...    Born in Venezuela, Jocelin spent her youth in Miami and Jacksonville, Florida before taking off to travel around the U.S. on a Greyhound bus. “I knew the world was big and I wanted to see more of it. Traveling really helped... Read More
United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County School Supply Drive 2019 608 students were identified as homeless in Buncombe County Public Schools during the 2018 school year. More than 14,500 students qualified for free and reduced lunch, totaling more than half of our students. Of low wealth students, 17% don’t graduate from high school. The racial, academic, and opportunity gap in our community is at an unprecedented level.  It’s facts and... Read More
Volunteer Spotlight: Girls on the Run Coach + Mentor Sonia Rodriguez Ibarra Meet Sonia Rodriguez Ibarra, 21 years old and a recent graduate from UNC Greensboro with a degree in Public Health. While finishing up school, Sonia managed to volunteer time as a girl’s mentor and coach with Girls on the Run, at not just one, but at three different schools in Buncombe County. Having recently relocated to Hendersonville, North Carolina, she credits her... Read More
                                            Parent Leadership Shines at Erwin Middle Parent involvement alongside school staff, community partners, and students is one of many crucial components in the Community School Strategy. It’s a necessary element in creating community-level change, with the school serving as a resource center and gathering space.    Last year at Erwin Middle School, we witnessed parent leadership grow stronger as... Read More
Owen Middle Students Learn Entrepreneurship in Spark Tank Project   On May 16th, Owen Middle School students excitedly filled the school cafeteria, holding boxes filled with baked goods, Tupperwares of homemade slime, and circular tubes adorned with bunched hair ties and eyeglass holders with 3D printed beads on the strings. Yes, these were the creative wares made for a class assignment, yet it wasn’t just any regular class assignment. The... Read More
Community School Leaders from North Carolina and Tennessee Gather in Asheville   On May 16, 2019, United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County hosted Community School leaders from Durham, Knoxville, Nashville and Chattanooga, for a day of learning and sharing of best practices. After each leader shared highlights, we had a chance for cross-initiative learning based on the Four Pillars of Community Schools: Collaborative Leadership; Integrated... Read More
Volunteer Spotlight: Malina Blanton, Wells Fargo “As a branch manager, member of the community and native of the community, I think trying to model what a difference can be made when you give back to the place you live in is important,” shares Malina Blanton of Wells Fargo and United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County leadership giving group member of both Highlands Circle and Women United. “I try to connect the dots for others to see that we... Read More
Highland’s Circle Discussion Recap: The Facts We Don’t Figure, A Conversation About Poverty   On Wednesday, May 8th, members from United Way’s leadership group Highlands Circle met at Lenoir-Rhyne University in a round-table discussion with several local leaders from Asheville Housing Authority, Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College, and the City of Asheville to discuss common myths around poverty. Bruce Waller, Community School... Read More
  Don't Miss the Final Homework Diners of the School Year   With temperatures in the 80’s and end of grade test studying in the works, the final countdown for weekly Homework Diners is taking place before we officially welcome summer. With a Community Market, one-on-one Resume Workshop, College Night, Spark Tank Fair and more, make sure you mark your calendars for upcoming Homework Diners in your community. If you’ve never been, these are free... Read More