The United Way of Central Indiana, which serves Indianapolis/Marion County, along with Boone, Hamilton, Hancock, Hendricks and Morgan Counties, has launched a major revision of its priorities and the priorities of its funded agencies. The initiative is called The New U, a commitment to make measurable improvements in priority community issues facing Indianapolis and Central Indiana. The New U involves United Way focusing on specific goals to be reached by the years 2020 and 2021 in the areas of Education, Income, Health, and Basic Needs. The New U will align the United Way’s efforts including public policy work and partnerships around these measurable community goals. One reason is because United Way feels continuing with past approaches won’t produce the progress needed to change community conditions.
In an in depth Afternoons with Amos interview, United Way President/CEO Ann Murtlow and two other key United Way executives appeared to explain The New U goals to the listeners and the community. The major The New U areas are: EDUCATION – which includes goals of having 80% of Central Indiana child care facilities be high quality by 2021; 90% of Central Indiana 3rd graders reading at grade level by 2021 and 90% of Central Indiana high school students graduate on-time. INCOME – By 2020 reducing to only 25% the percentage of Central Indiana families that pay 30% or more of their income in rent/utilities. HEALTH – Reducing Central Indiana’s child obesity rate by 10% and improve overall health rankings in Central Indiana’s counties. BASIC NEEDS – Ensure that the basic needs of Central Indiana residents are met. Joining Amos and Murtlow in discussing the United Way The New U were Demetrius Glover, United Way’s Director of Research and Christie Gillespie, Director of Agency Services.
The three discussed with Amos The New U’s priorities and how they would work with existing agencies. One United Way priority in The New U is the Center for Working Families which helps provide income security for area families. Murtlow and Gillespie discussed the Center for Working Families in some detail and reinforced that the city’s major community or multi-service centers would still have a significant role to play in The New U. Also discussed were the basic philosophy of United Way and how smaller non-profits can participate or partner on projects with United Way agencies. Particularly African-American and minority run or serving agencies and non-profits. The increased scrutinize and transparency major non=-profits like United Way must demonstrate to donors and the public was also talked about along with what will happen to United Way agencies whose current programs don’t fully fit in The New U priorities. Click the Media Player to Hear United Way’s Top Officials Discuss The New U With Amos. Runs 41 Minutes. ©2014 WTLC/Radio One.