Working Families Platform

One in four households in Elkhart County is in financial peril.

Many of our hardworking neighbors simply don’t earn enough to make ends meet. There is not enough money in the household to cover all the basics, from housing and food to basic child care, education and health care. These are hard facts.

Hard facts lead to hard choices: Repair the car or buy your prescription medicine? Use a licensed child care provider or repair the window that is driving up utility bills? Take a sick child to the emergency clinic or buy food for the family? These and many more hard choices leave families in need.

Many families are one emergency away from financial disaster. One unexpected expense can lead to life-changing disaster, such as losing a job or losing a home.

We believe that no one should have to make these choices. No one should have to live on the edge of survival. That's why we are working to bring our working families to a safer, more sustainable place.

 
 

Care of Children

United Way of Elkhart County has invested millions in education, and nowhere has that impact been greater than in early childhood.  Working families are often unable to afford the expense of high-quality childcare.  Local gaps in capacity, cost, quality, and hours of operation can combine into insurmountable hurdles for working families.  For this reason we have invested in an Early Childhood Coalition Director, Carla Biro of Gr8t Beginnings, to bring awareness and additional partners to this important issue.  Additionally, United Way continues to invest in education programs for learners of all ages.

 

 

Job Skills

For nearly three decades the United States economy's ability to create and sustain enough high paying jobs to support the realization of the American Dream for millions of workers has faded.  Today the real need is not only for sufficient numbers of jobs or wokers, but for a workforce with the right mix of skills to meet our economy's constantly evolving needs.  That's why we're investing in the development of employment pipelines like Goodwill's Career Center.  United Way invests in programs that recession-proof our neighbors.
 
 

Financial Empowerment

It's all about understanding finances!  Hard working families in Elkhart County need support in their fight to gain economic mobility.  Upward mobility, financial literacy, debt reduction, and emergency savings are issues that many deal with alone.  United Way fights for working families and realizes that we win by acting collectively.  We continue to lead the way with our 2-1-1 community referral hotline which connects thousands of people to financial (and other!) resources throughout Elkhart County.  But we don't stop there - whether it's coats, food or prescription assistance, or home-buyer education courses, we fight for families that are working hard but falling short.

 

 

 

How does this crisis affect our community?

 

The whole community suffers when families live on the brink of financial ruin. When children are not ready for school, they add a burden to the educational system. When households cannot afford preventative health care, they are likely to place future burden on the health care system, increasing insurance payments for all. When local workers cannot afford an emergency, let alone invest in their neighborhood, communities may experience instability, and/or decline in economic growth.

 
 

You Can Join the Fight for Working Families.

 

Let’s help working families reach a place of stability, independence and success.  Through targeted and strategic programs, innovation, communication, and awareness we will work together with families, community partners, donors, and our corporate friends to secure quality education, proper health and economic mobility.

 
 
Additional reading:

Click here to view the 2018 ALICE Report for Indiana

 
 

Please, join our fight for working families. Give now. We win by LIVING UNITED.

 

Questions?  Want to get involved?  Contact Keith Sarber, Vice President of Community Impact, at sarberk@unitedwayec.org or call 574.295.1650