|United Way Says Yes|
I have to admit, I am a stickler for rules. However, the bureaucracy of the government job I had for a while sometimes felt stifling – we often had to say, ”No,” to some really good ideas because they would not work with the systems in place. The work was important and there were mostly good reasons for the rules, but I certainly appreciate the flexibility of working for a nonprofit. We try to say, “Yes,” whenever we can see that our involvement could make a difference for people in our community.
We recently said, “Yes,” to a project that is outside the typical work of our partners. A few months back I shared about an initiative which had a goal to provide PCs to kids to help them stay connected to their schoolwork through the pandemic and beyond. I am happy to announce that along with Alpine Bank, Durango Education Foundation, Boys & Girls Club of La Plata County, Durango 9R School District, PCs for People, and a few corporate supporters, we were able to raise funds and secure 400 refurbished computers for students in Durango who did not have access to a machine. Families were able to purchase the computers for $20 each and own them – no need to return when the semester ends. I saw tears in more than one parents’ eyes when they learned this new asset was theirs to keep.
|Well, good work tends to lead to more work, right?! I am pleased to announce that United Way of Southwest Colorado has secured $100,000 from the Governor’s Covid-Relief Fund to replicate this process in all of the nine school districts in southwest Colorado. We added San Juan BOCES as a project partner and are off and running. These funds will help to provide computers and, in some cases, internet connectivity, for those students who are falling behind in this digital divide.|
In addition to providing access to online portions of education, these computers allow families to participate in telehealth, remote counseling/therapy, and even online employment. This is truly an example of how a small investment can change a life overnight. The Governor’s grant will not cover all of the need across our nine school districts, but will make a big dent. Please consider contributing to this effort to help us make sure ALL students have the tools to do the work they are expected to do. Thank you for Living United with us in this digital age!
Lynn Urban, President & CEO