Initiatives

Collective Impact Model

 

The Collective Impact model is what United Way of Broome County strives for by acting as the backbone organization for 2-1-1 Susquehanna River Region, the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program the Healthy Lifestyles Coalition Initiative and the Binghamton-Broome Anti-Poverty Initiative (BBAPI). Collective impact has been widely adopted as an effective form of cross-sector collaboration to address complex social and environmental challenges.Too many organizations are working in isolation from one another. Collective impact brings people together, in a structured way, to achieve social change.

Visit www.HelpMe211.org to search for local services online

 PROVIDING PHONE SUPPORT TO YOU 24 HOURS A DAY, 7 DAYS A WEEK!

More than 100 times a day, the phone rings at the 2-1-1 call center, a service of the United Way of Broome County. Callers who are seeking help but don’t know where to turn receive free, confidential information and referrals. 2-1-1 provides a one-stop gateway to vital information, simplifying the health and human services maze for everyone. Using a comprehensive database of nearly 4,000 programs, the 2-1-1 staff can link people to the information about the services they need.

The 2-1-1 Susquehanna Region call center has a staff of nationally-certified information and referral specialists serving Broome, Chenango, Delaware, Otsego, and Tioga Counties and can provide information such as:

Basic and emergency needs, such as food resources, shelters, rent and utility assistance.

Physical and mental health resources, such as health insurance options, support groups, counseling services and alcohol and drug rehabilitation services.

Support for children, youth and families, such as counseling, childcare resources, mentoring programs, recreation programs, and family resource centers.

Support for seniors and those with disabilities, such as agencies on aging, adult day care, meals at home, respite care, transportation and recreation.

How I can help, such as volunteer opportunities and where to donate food, clothing, household goods, and other items.

You can reach the call center by dialing 2-1-1 on any landline and most cell phones in the area. You can also reach the center by dialing 1-800-901-2180.

A searchable database is available at www.helpme211.org

As part of its commitment to addressing key community issues, United Way of Broome County is developing strategies to positively impact the financial stability of our residents. One goal is to help people move towards greater economic self-sufficiency.

One of the first initiatives toward this goal is United Way’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. By offering free tax return preparation to low- and moderate- income households, the VITA program ensures that individuals and families receive all tax benefits for which they are eligible, most importantly the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The EITC is a refundable tax credit for low- and moderate-income working taxpayers and has been recognized as the single most powerful tool to lift children out of poverty in the United States. Depending on income and number of household members, the EITC can increase a family’s annual income by as much as 50%.

The United Way of Broome County partnered with the existing Broome County Department of Social Service (DSS) and the Family Enrichment Network (FEN) VITA sites to form a regional VITA Collaborative for each tax season since 2010. The Department of Social Services has managed a very successful VITA site for many years, and has been instrumental in coordinating and training volunteers. Appointment scheduling is now streamlined by utilizing our local 2-1-1 call center for all three of the sites.

This tax season, over 350 households turned to United Way and DSS for assistance; in total, $915,587 in tax refunds were processed, with an additional estimated savings of over $97,000 in tax prep costs to participants.
 

Click here to learn more about the VITA program.

The Healthy Lifestyles Coalition is the group behind the Eat Well. Play Hard. Binghamton! campaign. It is made up of about 2 dozen non-profit and business partners, as well as North and East Side residents.

EWPHB! aims to make the community served by Theodore Roosevelt Elementary School district a fun, healthy and safe place for families. By providing programs and education on topics such as nutrition, cooking, food access, physical activity, community collaboration and youth development, we hope to build a stronger, healthier community for residents of all ages and backgrounds.

The EWPHB! initiative has a home at the Lee Barta Community Center. This center, once a police substation, was rededicated in honor of fallen Binghamton Police Officer Lee Barta as a venue for positive community programming.

We also hold classes and events at other community locations! Keep an eye out for us at Carlisle Community Center, Centenary-Chenango Street United Methodist Church, Cheri A. Lindsey Memorial Park, Theodore Roosevelt Elementary School, State Street/ Phelps Park, and more!