United Way gives out three $10,000 grants to local non-profits for innovative solutions to area needs.

Johnson City, TN- Six area agencies had the opportunity to compete for three $10,000 grants from United Way of East Tennessee Highlands on Tuesday evening.

These agencies were chosen by a panel of Student Government Association students at ETSU from several submissions and a chance to give a ten-minute pitch to get their project funded. “We knew that if we were going to focus on innovative ideas, we needed young leaders who are learning about cutting edge solutions to current problems. This group did an amazing job choosing the final six competitors.” says Leslie Salling President/CEO of United Way of East Tennessee Highlands.

The event was very interactive and let the audience members be the fourth judge to help decide which agencies should receive the funds. “We had three great judges from the community that really had a great vision on what we do as a United Way to support health, education, and financial stability, but we wanted to give United Way supporters a chance to be a part of bringing solutions to community needs.”

Those agencies and programs that were selected to win the $10,000 include:

– MyRide Johnson County: A program from the Johnson County Senior Center that works with volunteers that provide a free ride to those seniors that need to get to doctor’s appointment, the grocery store, and even the hairdresser.

-The NETN/SWVA Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Alliance: A local group formed to provide businesses and community agencies with education on diversity, equity and inclusion to help grow the economy in our region.

– Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians: Girl Scouts Have a RPL Effect: a program that matches girl scouts doing community projects with community and business leaders that will act as a mentor to the scout.

Salling says, “We are delighted to welcome our new partner programs.  All six presentations were fantastic, and we are so proud of the innovative ideas that help make our community better.  It was such a great introduction into our new innovation fund, and we are excited to see what the future holds for it.”


Social Innovation Fund

The United Way of East TN Highlands established the Social Innovation Fund in 2020 with $85,000 of donor designated funds. The fund will be used to support new programs aimed to meet social needs by filling gaps in our community related to health, education, or financial stability. Nonprofits or community organizations with programs less than 2 years old are eligible to apply. The Social Innovation Fund is fully funded through United Way of East TN Highlands.

United Way of East TN Highlands
Serving Washington, Carter, Johnson and Southern Sullivan Counties, our goal is to break the cycle of poverty by uniting people and resources to strengthen the health, education and financial stability of every person in our community. Our vision is to be a community united to empower every person and organization to reach their full potential and achieve mor. For more information about United Way of East TN Highlands, please visit www.UnitedWayETNH.org.


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