Skip to main content

Community-driven United Way Allocations Process Ensures Impactful Investments

United Way of York County creates and sustains solutions for our community by ensuring people have the building blocks of opportunity: Education, Health, and Economic Mobility.
From the beginning, when the York Welfare Federation was established in 1921, the organization has relied heavily on volunteers — the very first Campaign was in fact a door-to-door solicitation conducted by hundreds of volunteers and volunteer captains.
This long history of volunteer leadership is nowhere more apparent than in United Way of York County’s Allocations process, where in more than 80 community volunteers donate more than 1,100 hours of their time to ensure that only programs that demonstrate measurable impact are trusted with United Way dollars. This community-driven, people-focused approach engages trained volunteers representing the diverse interests of our community, who are passionate about bringing about real, lasting change.
Through the Allocations process, every program receiving funding from the United Way of York County Impact Fund reports outcome data and is thoroughly assessed to make certain that significant results and outcomes are achieved. This is a major component of the important work we do in York County!
Annual site visits enable United Way of York County Allocations volunteers to hear updates from Partners, ask questions, and recommend ongoing improvements. This process ensures donors’ investments are stewarded well — and provides a great way for our community to see first-hand the difference that our Partner Agencies make in York County.
Every year, the Allocations Steering Committee, comprised of Panel Chairs in each focus area, review recommendations from each Allocations Panel. Their recommendations are presented to the Board, who then approves Allocations decisions for the coming funding year. This process demonstrates United Way of York County’s commitment to accountability and transparency in our funding decisions.
In this community-driven process, Allocations volunteers are the true stewards of the Impact Fund, and we’re fortunate to have their time and service to ensure funded programs are meeting the needs of York County residents. Panel chairs have gone on to serve in other key United Way volunteer leadership roles, including as chair of our Board of Directors, and some long-tenured panel chairs continue to volunteer for a decade or more.
Even as COVID-19 turned every meeting into a virtual gathering in March 2020, the volunteers leading the Allocations process adapted swiftly, with virtual trainings, orientation, and site “visits.” This virtual approach continued this year, and volunteers didn’t miss a beat.
This year, we’re proud to invest your support into 64 programs at 34 Partner Agencies, plus United Way of York County’s Education Initiatives, and two programs through the Strategic Initiatives Fund. Altogether, this investment is $2.12 million that will change the lives of our neighbors, family, and friends in York County.
Celebrating 100 Years 
United Way of York County celebrates 100 years of service to our community in 2021. We began as The York Welfare Federation, an organization that raised funds on behalf of 17 member agencies.  Today, as United Way of York County, the mission of raising community funds remains the same, but the strategies have evolved in order to meet the growing and changing needs of people living in York County.  
Join us this year as we take a look back at 100 years of impact, and look ahead at the future we can build together for York County: A future where every person in our community can thrive.  
From the Archives