Improving life skills increases independence
The Heart of Illinois United Way is focused on ensuring individuals and families achieve financial stability. To ensure people can thrive, our work focuses on providing opportunities to get them on their feet again and helping during emergencies and crises.
United Way funds distributed to the Financial Stability Impact Area support programs focused on independent living and self-sufficiency, including:
- Crisis and Disaster Services
- Employment Services
- Life Skills Education
- Legal Support
United Way funded financial stability programs provide . . .
- Basic needs for food, shelter and clothing
- Work-force skills that improve employability
- Emergency relief that helps in times of need
- Legal assistance to address family crises
Here are just a few ways Heart of Illinois United Way funded programs are positively impacting financial stability in central Illinois:
- 91% of individuals and families in need of housing found affordable homes
- 79% of individuals were continuously housed for one year after locating affordable housing
- 76% of individuals who found employment were continuously employed for one year
- 99% of individuals who needed legal support gained knowledge on how to resolve their cases
- 94% of low-income seniors and persons with developmental or intellectual disabilities were able to live independently with food, shelter and transportation assistance
Acts of Kindness Change Lives
A stable home is key to wellness, safety, financial stability and independence. Phoenix Community Development Services provides supportive housing that empowers residents to increase independence, improve quality of life, and maintain housing on a permanent basis. Phoenix CDS volunteers Grant Dodds and David McGinty serve hot meals every Friday at New Hope Apartments. With a total of more than 150 units, including 84 units at New Hope, Phoenix CDS is the largest provider of supportive housing for homeless veterans, individuals and families in the area. Supportive housing like that offered by Phoenix CDS is the most cost effective way to end homelessness and reduce its related costs including healthcare, unemployment, institutionalization and emergency services.
Welcome Families Home
Having a stable home provides a sense of security and support for a family and is one of the most basic requirements of wellbeing and financial stability. Through Habitat for Humanity Greater Peoria Area, families have the opportunity to create a stable, long-term home environment and earn the pride of home ownership. By welcoming families to a new home, Habitat provides a sense of security, a place for friends and family to visit, and a base from which parents and children can engage with their community and have access to quality education.
Did you know?
The Heart of Illinois United Way invests more than $300,000 annually in programs that help seniors and adults with disabilities remain independent, including in-home counseling, home-delivered meals, special transportation, and advocacy for abused, neglected or financially exploited clients.
- If you give $15 a week, you can help a homebound senior combat depression and isolation with counseling and support to remain living independently.
- If you give $20 a week, you can provide 28 investigations of abuse of seniors and adults with disabilities to determine safety and maintain maximum independence.
Working with a Job Coach is the Perfect Fit
Beginning in childhood, persons with developmental disabilities are affected by physical or intellectual impairments that impact day-to-day functioning throughout a person?s lifetime resulting in lower incomes, higher unemployment rates, and fewer housing options. The Heart of Illinois United Way invests more than $232,000 annually in programs that provide job training and coaching, integrate individuals into the community, and provide safe housing through group homes and independent living apartments.
Dan, a client at EP!C?s Community Job Placement program, has been employed at Anytime Fitness since 2015. Along with the support of his job coach, Russell, Dan helps clean equipment and serves as the fitness center?s mascot outside of the store and at special events. Friendly and loving to interact with customers, Dan is working towards being as independent as possible.
Did you know?
The Heart of Illinois United Way invests nearly $440,000 annually in programs that address housing and homeless services. These programs provide emergency shelter, permanent supportive housing and support services to make the transition to stable, affordable housing. Having a stable place to call home is the first building block for self sufficiency, as it is critical for job retention, health/safety, and stability for children.
- If you give $5 a week, you can provide 2 nights of shelter and 6 meals for a homeless family.
Always Ready to Help when the Unexpected Happens
Hundreds of people are affected by natural disasters every year in central Illinois. Whether it’ is a fire, a storm or a flood that damages or destroys a home, or power outages that affect daily living, natural disasters disrupt lives. The Heart of Illinois United Way supports the Salvation Army (above), the American Red Cross and the Heart of Illinois 2-1-1 Information and Referral Service that are always ready to help individuals dealing with a natural disaster find food, shelter and emotional support.
United Way Financial Stability Programs at Work
To see United Way funded financial stability programs at work visit our YouTube channel.
Did you know?
The Heart of Illinois United Way invests nearly $220,000 annually to programs that provide employment, life skills and housing for adults with developmental disabilities. These programs provide employment readiness, job coaching and job retention services, integrate individuals into community settings, provide safe housing options through group homes and independent living apartments, and maximize skills for independence.
- If you give $5 a week, you can provide 12 hours of employment readiness and job coaching activities to adults with developmental disabilities.