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As time passes, and staff members change, the origin stories of organizations can sometimes become more faint, even forgotten. This is not the case for the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina. As active present day partners, our two organizations share a dedication to our community and a lasting and intertwined history.  Featured in their recent annual report is a celebration of their 40 years of impact on our region and, within that... Read More
Friends,   I hope you will indulge me the opportunity to share a more personal message as we close out this year and charge headlong into 2019.    Transitions A few months ago, I quietly announced that I will be retiring effective May 1, 2019. After a 33 year career with local United Ways, 22 of those years here in Asheville and Buncombe County, it’s a bittersweet moment. But, I’m ready to hang up my jacket and tie and replace them with a fly... Read More
Accessing Free Resources in Asheville & Buncombe County Through the Winter Using NC 2-1-1 As the winter season brings colder weather to the mountains of North Carolina, many of us are facing the often-difficult issues related to dropping temperatures. Thankfully, there are many local and regional nonprofits that work tirelessly to provide free assistance to residents facing financial hardship and in need of temporary support to: heat their... Read More
10 Questions with Asheville Middle Resource Coordinator Bruce Waller on Transforming Asheville Middle School into a Community School Not long ago I sat down with Bruce Waller, our Resource Coordinator at Asheville Middle School, to talk about the work being done there going into our third school year. Bruce joined our staff after working with local nonprofit Green Opportunities, which provides workforce training and development opportunities... Read More
The end of the year brings several holidays focused on time with friends and family, connecting in community, and sharing meals, gifts, time and wisdom with those around you. The volunteer center of United Way, Hands On Asheville-Buncombe, makes it easy to get involved, offering meaningful volunteer opportunities with local nonprofit organizations and schools throughout Asheville and Buncombe County. With hundreds of opportunities made... Read More
During the first week of October, more than 75 participants gathered at United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County for Restorative Practices trainings with Kerri Berkowitz, a national leader in school-based implementation of Restorative Practices.    Restorative Practices are based on principles and processes that emphasize the importance of positive relationships as central to building community and restoring relationships when harm has... Read More
One Teacher's Idea Met With Community Support... Late last year, our Resource Coordinator at Asheville Middle School was talking to 7th grade teacher, Mrs. Portugal, who was teaching a class about entrepreneurship. In the class, students were learning about market research, product development, manufacturing, marketing and financing. Pretty impressive stuff for a seventh grade class. What Mrs. Portugal needed was a group of volunteers who could... Read More
Meet Linnea Burgevin, United Way Resource Coordinator entering her third school year at Erwin Middle this fall, and our fourth year as an organization working in partnership with the school. I sat down with Linnea to hear an update on her work in helping to transform the Erwin Middle Warriors into a community school alongside teachers and administration, local organizations, parents, students, and volunteers.   “My first year was all about... Read More
A long time volunteer and Peaks Society member, Hometrust Bank President and CEO Dana Stonestreet served as the chair of our 2010 Focused Initiative Task Force.    It was through critical research, analysis and decision-making through this task force of fourteen local community leaders, that a foundation for United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County’s community school strategy was laid. This collaboration involves school systems and more than... Read More
Author: Laura Elliot, Director of Community Schools, United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County  This work was originally published in, or is adapted from, an article published in the February 2018 issue of Phi Delta Kappan magazine.   Turn to any travel magazine, and you might see an article placing Asheville and Western North Carolina in a top 10 list of locations to relax or retire. There’s good reason for that. Asheville is nestled in a... Read More

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