TOP FAQs about United Way of Tarrant County
United Way is a fundraiser, grant maker and catalyst for change – a convener — working to improve the lives of everyone, in all communities throughout Tarrant County. We are fighting to advance the education, financial stability and health of every person in every community throughout Tarrant County.
We’ve found that Education, Income and Health are underlying issues for most of the challenges in our community, so we invest in programs and services that focus on those areas. Through United Way of Tarrant County, people and groups with common concerns team up to create lasting change in the community. United, we can accomplish more than any single group can accomplish on its own.
United Way is committed to helping the residents of Tarrant County regardless of age, ethnicity or background. From infancy to the later stages in life, United Way works with partners to provide services to help those in need. We’ve found that Education, Income and Health are underlying issues for most of the challenges in our community, so we invest in programs and services that focus on those areas. Through United Way of Tarrant County, people and groups with common concerns team up to create lasting change in the community. United, we can accomplish more than any single group can accomplish on its own.
In the area of education, we help preschoolers prepare for kindergarten, third graders improve their reading, and middle schoolers discover and follow their career dreams. We also improve child care centers and get parents more involved with their kids’ education.
In the area of income, we help families get the tax returns they qualify for with Earned Income Tax Credits, help them get out of debt and teach them how to make their money go further through financial coaching. We help low-income workers qualify for better jobs with career training so they can earn family-sustaining wages. We also sponsor programs in adult literacy, English as a Second Language classes, and Adult Basic Education.
In the health area, we equip family caregivers to care for their loved ones and themselves at home. We also help adults with ongoing health concerns manage their health through fall prevention classes, diabetes and nutrition counseling, and medication management. We invest in respite care, provide transportation to medical appointments, support individual and family counseling, and provide hot meals at senior citizen centers.
United Way provides a Financial Report called ”Funding Distribution” every year to show who gets funding from United Way and how much goes to each organization. It can be found here:
United Way of Tarrant County has NO FEES on donor designations. 100% of your donation will go to the cause or partner organization you choose. Donate to our Community Fund, the most powerful way to help our entire community. But if you’re passionate about Education, Income & Health or a partner organization, you can choose have ALL of your donor designation go to that cause or agency without a fee.
To become a program partner, eligible agencies must be invited by the United Way Board of Directors. There is no formal application process, but potential program partners must be 501(c)(3) organizations and have received a minimum of two years of funding as impact partners. Impact partners are organizations utilizing a focused approach to bring about community change related to the priority issues identified by United Way.
Planned Parenthood is NOT a partner of United Way of Tarrant County.
Planned Parenthood is not a partner of United Way of Tarrant County, and is not involved in any of our funding programs or initiatives to improve Education, Income and Health in our region. We do not have a budget line item to fund that organization.
United Way of Tarrant County relies on workplace campaigns to generate funding for our partner agencies. We raise funds through workplace campaigns and grants to improve our Tarrant County community.
No, United Way of Tarrant County does NOT take 90% of the money raised. In fact, we have one of the lowest fundraising/administrative costs to program ratios within Tarrant County and nationally.
United Way of Tarrant County’s strong financial health and commitment to accountability and transparency once again earned a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator, America’s largest independent charity evaluator. This is the fourth year in a row that United Way has earned this top rating. Financial information can be found in our public annual reports each year at: http://www.unitedwaytarrant.org/about-us/reports-finances. This has helped us achieve a 4-star rating by Charity Navigator. United Way of Tarrant County is proud of its work in Education, Income & Health to build a better Tarrant County community.
TD Smyers is our current President and CEO. His salary is available to the public. Information about the United Way of Tarrant County financials along with TD Smyer’s salary can be found on Charity Navigator at: https://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfmbay=search.summary&or gid=4646
Charity Navigator, a third party non-profit, has rated United Way of Tarrant County 4 stars, the highest rating available, for 5 consecutive years. Only 6% of the charities they evaluated have received at least five consecutive 4-star evaluations, indicating that United Way of Tarrant County outperforms most other charities in the entire United States. We encourage individuals to visit their site and learn about our organization and we encourage the comparison to many other non-profits both locally and nationally. The organization is very proud of its accountability and transparency, which is reflected in their high score in those areas.
United Way of Tarrant County is a member of United Way Worldwide, which is the largest non-profit organization in the world with over 1,800 organizations worldwide across 45 countries. It is led by Brian Gallagher, CEO. United Way Worldwide is a separate organization with its own financials. View Charity Navigator’s review here: https://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=search.summary&orgid=4629
The United Way Community Fund is the most powerful way to invest in your community that supports dozens of partners. Donations made to this fund are unrestricted providing United Way of Tarrant County the maximum opportunity to provide funding to over 40 partner agencies and our impact work, provide resources to our 2-1-1 Information & Referral Service, support our Area Agency on Aging and sustain our operational costs.
2-1-1 Texas at United Way of Tarrant County is a nationally accredited information and referral center that connects people in need with services and programs. In Texas, 2-1-1 is a partnership between local organizations and Texas Health and Human Services Commission. United Way of Tarrant County’s 2-1-1 is staffed by United Way employees and offers an assessment, referrals, advocacy and follow-up phone calls on behalf of callers living in our 8 county region of Erath, Hood, Johnson, Palo Pinto, Parker, Somervell, Tarrant and Wise counties. In the past 5 years our center has responded to over 1 million calls. Certified Information and Referral Specialists connect callers to hundreds of services that offer support in education, income and health as well as caregiver supports, disaster related services, veterans services and more. To access, simply dial 2-1-1 or 1.877.541.7905 from a landline or mobile phone or visit: https://unitedwaytarrant.org/211.
A majority of the funds generated are through Workplace Giving, which are annual fundraising campaigns at companies. In the past, some companies have kept engagement to only those activities that happened once per year. Now, United Way of Tarrant County has created year-round engagement to further increase awareness for the work that we do and provide multiple volunteer opportunities for employees and individuals to donate their time and not just their money. We know that once people see the great work that is done to improve the community, they will feel better about their gift and help spread the word. Also if you want to learn more about United Way, please sign up for our e-newsletter and get updates emailed directly to you.