Pet Peeve Alert: I hate running out of toilet
Running out of toilet paper is annoying. It seems like you never
remember to buy more until you are in desperate need. Then it’s
even more irritating because, when you do realize you need it,
it’s always right after you just made a trip to the store, and
now you have to make another trip specifically for toilet paper.
And it’s not like you live all that close to the store. Nor are
you excited about shelling out $10 for a pack, like it’s made out
of gold leaf and bunny fur or something.
I’ve been lying to myself for years. I always thought that
I was much more interesting than I actually am.
Fortunately, my child has rid me of that hair-brained assumption
—he is at the truthful, critical age of 11, and doesn’t really
try to sugar-coat his observations. It’s possible that he’s
right—he thinks I spend too much time thinking about “boring”
things. Upon reflection, I get it—I do talk about money a
lot. How much does that cost? Where’s the cheapest
gas? What’s on sale? Where’s the change I left in my car?
They want how much? Is it worth it? When do I get
paid? Those shoes cost $150, really? Have we saved
enough for vacation? Have I maximized my 403b
account? What’s my liquid asset situation? What’s my
credit score? Shopping at Goodwill is chic now, right? Not
exactly stimulating conversation topics. And, when I’m not
talking about money, I’m talking about my weight, getting older,
what I’m going to make for dinner for my family, what’s growing
in my garden, and how I’m going to hang out with friends this
weekend; maybe a little more interesting, but barely.
You know what I’m talking about, right? They say two things
in life are for sure—death and taxes. I know that I’ll
eventually have to pay the reaper and the IRS, so what can I do
to prepare me to make those things less painful?
Well, I try really hard to practice what I preach—and if you know
me, I do preach! I am the Program Officer for two of our
three focus areas: Health and Income. I work toward a healthy lifestyle,
try to work in exercise and make healthy meals, my husband and I
work together on a realistic budget, save for retirement and our
son has had his own savings account since he’s been 5. When I
slip, I have resources to help me get back on track, the fitness
pro at the gym, my mom, or our financial advisor.
Thank goodness I have those resources (especially Mom!) But what
if I didn’t know who to ask? Or worse, what if I didn’t know what
to ask or have the confidence or understanding that I can have my
health and be financially sound, even if I have too much month
left at the end of the money? That’s where my life intersects
with my work.
Hello, my name is Faith. I was very grateful to have the
opportunity to make this United Way video.
At first I was a little nervous to step out of my comfort zone
and talk to people that I don’t usually interact with. I was
nervous, but once I started asking people to be involved with
making this video I realized that I loved it. I like being able
to take footage and decide what sounds best. I like being able to
try out new things revolving around what I love, photography. At
times I did get a little frustrated because I didn’t have the
right place to shoot the video and because the recorder wasn’t
picking up audio. The lines that I wrote for people were a little
too complicated for them to remember also.
March 25, 2013Lorrie Wilson, Women in Philanthropy Co-Chair
Bimla Rhinehart was first and foremost my friend and most
recently a fellow member of Women in Philanthropy
(WIP). Although new to WIP, she made a big impact and
wanted very much to make a positive difference in the lives of
our foster youth. Bimla and I taught a communications
workshop in December at Koinonia. She was a wonderful role
model for them. After we finished the workshop, she
remarked at their exceptional manners, enthusiasm and active
Bimla was the brains and inspiration behind our
Day at the Capitol event where influential, successful women
leaders in state government spent the afternoon with some of our
foster females mentoring them and providing them with ideas,
information and most of all the desire to pursue their dream
There are worse crimes than burning books. One of
them is not reading them. – Joseph Brodsky
Last Friday over 660 children were given a great gift, a brand
new book! For the past couple of weeks, United Way with
support from the Sacramento Bee, Barnes and Noble, KVIE and the
Sacramento Library have conducted a book drive to support our
Star Readers Program.
Over 50% of the student’s in our region will not pass their third
grade reading proficiency test. This will only lead to many
of these children later struggling in school, as they lack the
foundation on which all academic skills are built.
Most school subjects taught are based on a simple concept – Read,
Synthesize, Analyze, and Process information. Without the help of
our donors and corporate sponsors, the students in the Star Readers project would fall farther and
farther behind their peers who are reading at grade level.
Not only will the over 660 students in the Star Readers project
enjoy the simple pleasure of reading a book of their very
own, with the support of our funded nonprofit agencies we
will be one step closer to reaching our goal of children reading
at grade level in 4th grade and beyond. Thank you to
everyone who helped share the gift of reading by donating
to the STAR Readers Book Drive.
I recently had the unique and amazing experience of being a “CEO
for a Day.” What made it special was not that I was a CEO
making any major decisions or delegating more work to the
hard-working staff at United Way California Capital Region in
Sacramento, but to have a first-hand look at the importance of
community involvement in local charities and how they impact both
the organizations associated with United Way and the peoples’
lives that are positively impacted. President & CEO
Steve Heath gave me a complete overview of United Way’s history,
how it operates and the key people involved. Frankly, I was
overwhelmed by the amount of work and effort executed by the
staff and local volunteers. Many charities in the region
depend on the generosity of donors and corporate sponsors.
The needs that are served by volunteers, charity staff, and
funding would not be possible without an efficient and organized
“united” fundraising and management arm that the United Way
We visited three organizations during my “CEO for a day”
stint. Leading off was a tour of the Women’s Empowerment
facility which recently relocated to 1590 North A Street in
Sacramento. And “WOW” was my reaction. Women’s
Empowerment is an organization I was fairly familiar with as many
volunteers from the company I work for regularly serve and help
equip women participants with work skills, emotional needs,
safety, and food and clothing assistance. Watching them being
able to expand to a larger facility with a better environment for
the women and children is a huge plus and certainly will help
make greater progress in the mission of the facility.
Wait, 90 projects? In one year? You must be
As the volunteer services manager, when I brought up the idea of
accomplishing 90 volunteer projects for the
90th anniversary of United Way California Capital Region,
everybody loved the idea but also thought I was little bit crazy
for trying to take on such a huge task. But you know what? WE can
do this. What better reason for individuals in our communities
who together make up so many companies, unions and groups to make
such a difference in one year? A difference not only for so many
of our nonprofit partners as a whole but also for the thousands
of people they serve each year. I am confident in YOU, our
An organization that puts faith in a 23-year-old to plan a day of
service for 60 volunteers is special. An organization that
truly believes in young people and that is dedicated to changing
lives across classes, ages, and races is even more special.
City Year is this organization and it gives me the privilege to
serve my country every day. It has developed me personally
City Year gave me the unique opportunity to plan a day of service
and to partner with United Way and the Developmental Disabilities
Services Organization. We combined our forces to make an
United Way’s Women in
Philanthropy members definitely know how to fill the
community with holiday spirit. During the past month,
United Way staff watched daily as gifts continued to pile in for
local foster youth who are a part of the Sacramento county’s
Gifts for the Heart program. In total, our donors brought
in 132 gifts to brighten the holiday season for 50 local foster
children. In addition to the numerous toys, bikes and other
items that filled our offices, we watched as a continuous stream
of online donations came through to support the purchase of 147
Christmas stockings for the teenage foster youth who are a part
of our $en$e-ability
The holiday season is about spreading joy and love.
Personally, I couldn’t have spent the days leading up to the
holiday season with a better group of women. I’m proud of
the work our Women in Philanthropy members do and I’m proud to
call myself a member.
Hardworking, passionate, smart, committed, selfless–the list of
praise goes on and on when I think about my staff here at United
Way. This time of year is known as the “busy” season, when the
bulk of our workplace giving campaigns are in full swing. As you
can imagine, things can get pretty hectic when you are juggling a
multitude of different and crucially important relationships,
presentations, and events and tasks, but somehow this team of
professionals don’t seem to mind.
That’s because they are selfless and they care. They care about
their work; they care about the companies and nonprofits that we
partner with; they care about our organizational mission. But
perhaps most importantly, they simply care a great deal about the
health and well-being of this community.
We were a team of 9 there to learn about the organization and to
do some painting, for their new multipurpose meditation and
We got there around 1 p.m., all decked out in our Wells Fargo
Volunteer shirts – ready to work. But first, we took a quick tour
of the facilities and learned about the work done there. We went
in to a meeting where several participants were working on a
video project, and they took some time to tell us about what all
they specialize in and do. From there, we hit the art studio –
and saw some great paintings and art pieces that many of the
program participants had created. Off to the quad to meet some of
the people that will be able to use the room once it is
completed, and receive a little thank you from them. Some meet
and greet and picture time and then off to the task at hand.
In my role at United Way, I have the benefits of experiencing the
unifying power of our community when it dares to dream, embraces
its hope and has the steadfast will it needs to be something
more. There’s nothing more satisfying than having a front
row seat to witness the hard work and passion behind every
program, funded or not, that strives to level the playing field
for so many in our region. Even in these arduous financial
times, our region embraces assets above deficits and team work as
desirable, not just a “necessary evil”. From the counties of
Amador to El Dorado, Placer to Sacramento and Yolo, folks are
putting their stakes in the ground around education, income and
health. And, it’s showing a significant community impact.
What is community impact? It is something that makes a lasting
impression on the region and its people. Community impact is
not short-lived, temporary or arbitrary; it does not create false
hope. It alters its course as needed for the best possible
outcome. Community impact is not quick or easy. It takes
dedication, strategy and alignment, cooperation and trust. It
takes all of us. It takes you.
What does volunteering mean to you? Sure,
volunteering makes you feel good. When you volunteer you are
reaching out to your community with your own two hands and making
a tangible difference.United Way California Capital Region and
the148 local certified nonprofit organizations we partner with
rely on volunteers to help achieve the big goals of our
community.We certainly can’t do it alone.We need the heads, hands
and hearts of committed people like you to help us tackle the
problems facing our communities.
That’s where you come in. And I sincerely mean
you…the person reading this. Yes, you.
September 7, 2012Tom Burns, CSECC Campaign Liaison
We all like to think that we are safe and secure, but one
incident or accident can surprise and shock us.
In 1980, my father had a massive stroke, and my mother was
instantly transformed into a 24-hour caregiver for a person who
had severe speech and mobility issues. My parents lived in
Illinois, and I was in Sacramento and felt helpless.
My mother was getting very depressed and was beginning develop
back injuries. Then the local United Way stepped in and let my
mother know about a senior daycare program that the local United
Way had developed.
How do you measure the value of our local government workers?
As we continue to feel the pain of this deep recession and see
many of our local employers either close up shop or leave town
all together, it is important to recognize the importance of
government employees and the crucial role that they play in our
The fact is, government is the #1 industry in the greater
Sacramento region and while its employees provide crucial public
services, their significance goes well beyond that. Whether
employed by the US government, state, a county, a city, or a
special district, these public servants infuse an incredible
amount of money into our local economy, which has an obvious
benefit to our local businesses and the community as a whole. The
purchasing power of our local government workers is huge indeed,
but their hearts may be even bigger.
In fact, while suffering budget cutbacks, furloughs, and intense
public scrutiny, the philanthropic nature of public sector
workers has remained strong.
We wouldn’t ask you to do anything we wouldn’t do ourselves—and
that includes giving to/through United Way.
So as we gear up for our main campaign “season,” our staff has
again set the tone and pace by conducting its own best-practices
I’m so proud of them and their generosity, I just had to share
the results with you. Keep in mind that these people are
employees of a community-based nonprofit.
All 25 employees made contributions—either payroll deduction
pledges or one-time gifts. Nine of them gave at the leadership
level ($1,000 or more).
In all, we raised $21,775 in gifts and pledges and an additional
$403 from our silent auction and other activities. Everyone gave
willingly. Coercion has no place in philanthropy.
Yes, it’s true. It wasn’t that hard to convince me to participate
a second time because of the amount of fun I had in last year’s
inaugural event. Some may even say it was too easy, considering
the blisters and bruises that followed. True, walking a mile in
high heels and this year on a more visible course with a larger
number of spectators isn’t my typical way to spend a Saturday.
But after walking with an incredible group of guys last year who
were all there to support WEAVE, how could I resist?
In my opinion, WEAVE is a extremely worthy cause. The
organization provides crisis intervention services to women, men
and children in Sacramento County who have experienced domestic
violence or have been sexually assaulted. It is WEAVE’s mission
to bring an end to domestic violence and sexual assault in
partnership with our community. I’ve seen first hand the efforts
of WEAVE and the dedicated staff who work incredibly hard to make
I wish I had unlimited resources to give to those who need help.
Just think of what I could do if only I would win the lottery!
The reality is…I live on a budget. I have a mortgage and bills to
pay and limited funds left over to give away. But, I do
give—every paycheck—and my United Way donation is matched
dollar-for-dollar by the Intel Foundation, with the matching
amount allocated to local United Way Community Funds.
And because I work for Intel, I have the opportunity to also
donate my time, my talent and my passion to volunteer in my
community. Intel challenges me to utilize my professional skills
to benefit community organizations. Over the past year, I’ve
leveraged my communications, marketing and art expertise to help
the teens at Koinonia. One
project in particular is near and dear to my heart—The SHE&Me
My name is Emily, and I am a member of the Board of Directors for
the Kiwanis Family House. You might be surprised to know that I
am just 20 years old, enrolled in California State University at
Sacramento, and a member of Circle K International at Sacramento
State , the collegiate division of Kiwanis International.
When I first learned about the Kiwanis Family House, I knew right
away that it was a project I could passionately support.
From my experiences as both a child and an adult patient, I
knew firsthand what it was like to be in the hospital and that
regardless of age, it is never easy to be on your own during a
In my short life, I have been hospitalized a total of five times,
being admitted most recently in August of 2011.
It’s hard to believe that United Way’s Women in
Philanthropy program is celebrating its 10th year.
Back in 2001, United Ways across the country were starting local
women’s groups, and three volunteers – Char Donnermeyer, Carol
Wolfe and Donna Chipps – led the effort in forming our group who
decided to focus on helping local foster youth . I started at
United Way in February 2001 and had the pleasure of working
directly with the Women in Philanthropy program since its
inception. It’s definitely been a favorite part of my job.
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