Home Posts tagged United Way of Pioneer Valley
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Megan Moynihan

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) announced that Megan Moynihan, who has been serving as interim CEO since February 2023, has officially been appointed CEO of the organization, effective immediately. Moynihan was selected by the UWPV board of directors after a nationwide search.

Moynihan has more than 18 years of experience in the nonprofit sector, including 12 years at UWPV. She joined the organization in 2012 as a finance and accounting analyst and worked her way up to chief operating officer in 2022. In that role, she oversaw the development and implementation of UWPV’s strategic plan, grantmaking, and community partnerships. She also led the organization’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including launching the COVID-19 Relief Fund and shifting programming in response to community needs.

“I am honored and humbled to be named the CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley, an organization that I have been passionate about for the past decade,” Moynihan said. “I am grateful for the trust and support of the board, the staff, and the community, and I look forward to working with them to advance our mission of improving the lives of people in greatest need in our region.”

Scott Grodsky, chair of the UWPV board of directors, said Moynihan was the unanimous choice of the board after a rigorous and competitive process.

“Megan has proven herself to be an exceptional leader, especially during these challenging times,” he noted. “She has a deep understanding of the needs and opportunities in our community, a strong vision for the future of UWPV, and a commitment to excellence and innovation. We are thrilled to have her as our new CEO, and we are confident that she will take UWPV to the next level of impact and sustainability.”

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley is introducing a learning component as part of its OnBoard board-readiness and matching program. Titled “Board Basics,” this learning component will serve as an on-ramp to the popular annual board-matching event held each winter.

The initiative will kick off with “So You Think You Want to Join a Board?” — a three-part series geared toward individuals considering board-level volunteer opportunities. Through a conversational style of presentations by highly experienced nonprofit mentors in Western Mass., attendees will have the opportunity to learn, ask questions, network, and receive resources and tools to help them determine if board service is a good fit.

Part one of “So You Think You Want to Join a Board?” will be facilitated by Shannon Mumblo, president of Shannon Mumblo Consulting Inc., who will review the unique role nonprofits play in the community ecosystem and what potential volunteers should be aware of as board members. This breakfast event will be held on Wednesday, May 8 from 8 to 9:30 a.m. in the TD Bank conference room at 1441 Main St., Springfield.

Part two of “So You Think You Want to Join a Board?” will be held on Wednesday, Aug. 14 from 8 to 9:30 a.m. and will be facilitated by National Federation of Community Broadcasters CEO Rima Dael, who will provide participants with an understanding of board service as it relates to governance, fundraising, and basic financial oversight.

The final event in the series will take place the morning of Wednesday, Oct. 9, and will be led by Sarah Tanner, a partner with Financial Development Agency, who will guide attendees in understanding what questions they need to ask nonprofits in order to determine a fit.

All three of the learning sessions are free and will culminate in the OnBoard matching event on the evening of Thursday, Dec. 12.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — The Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) is a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) funded program designed to supplement the ongoing work of local social-service organizations to provide shelter, food, and supportive services to individuals and families who are experiencing, or are at risk of experiencing, homelessness or hunger.

United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) serves as the administrator for Hampden County for all EFSP funds. With the help of a local board comprised of local community leaders, UWPV determines how funding is allocated through a competitive grant-application process.

EFSP funding for phase 41 recently became available, resulting in the distribution of $189,292 to be disbursed on a reimbursement basis to local nonprofit organizations.

“We are truly honored to support allocation of these funds to the community during a time when these services are more important than ever,” said Megan Moynihan, president and CEO of UWPV. “We are especially grateful to our local board partners at Catholic Charities, the Red Cross, etc., who help us make this happen.”

EFSP funds must be used to supplement food and shelter services and may not be used as seed money for new programs. The key responsibility of participating organizations is to provide assistance within the intent of their programs.

Any agencies with ongoing programming in Hampden County that supports emergency food, shelter, utilities, and rent or mortgage assistance are welcome to apply. Agencies must be nonprofit, have an accounting system, practice non-discrimination, have demonstrated the capability to deliver emergency food and/or shelter programs, and, if they are a voluntary organization, have a voluntary board. Qualifying organizations are urged to apply.

To apply, organizations must attend one of two informational sessions: Thursday, April 11 at 9:30 a.m. at the TD Bank Building conference room, 1441 Main St, Springfield; or Wednesday, April 17 at 9:30 a.m. at the HCC MGM Culinary Arts Institute, 164 Race St, Holyoke. Email [email protected] to RSVP.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) will hold a kickoff event for the Dora D. Robinson Women’s Leadership Council on Friday, March 8.

The Dora D. Robinson Women’s Leadership Council is an affinity group of the United Way of Pioneer Valley, modeled on United Way Worldwide’s Women United program.

Robinson co-founded the council in 2014, when she served as president and CEO of UWPV. As the first woman to serve the century-old organization in that role, she championed opportunities for women to fulfill their philanthropic endeavors by sharing their talents, treasure, time, and leadership through the United Way.

After a period of inactivity, the council is ready to begin anew, re-established to honor Robinson’s spirit and legacy and to continue her visionary work on behalf of women and girls. A 13-member steering committee guides the strategic development of the council, and the March 8 kickoff event, which coincides with International Women’s Day, will serve as both a public reintroduction and a membership drive.

“As a beneficiary of Dora’s care and phenomenal leadership example, it is an honor to be a part of her legacy of empowerment for women of all backgrounds,” said Latoya Bosworth, co-chair of the steering committee and decades-long mentee of Dora.

Bosworth is joined by co-chair Giselle Gaines, who added that “it’s a privilege to be part of the Dora D. Robinson Women’s Leadership Council, celebrating a trailblazer’s legacy. In our commitment to women’s health, education, and financial empowerment, each woman on the committee brings unique gifts and leadership. Together, we build on Dora’s foundation, creating a lasting legacy of empowerment.”

The sold-out event will be held at Penthouse 650 at 1500 Main St. in Springfield. It will feature luxurious hors d’oeuvres, a DJ, and a cash bar.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — The United Way of Pioneer Valley will launch VolunteerConnect, a program of community events, workshops, and services that connect volunteers with opportunities in the Pioneer Valley.

As part of VolunteerConnect, UWPV will share a robust, virtual volunteer platform to match volunteers with open volunteer positions throughout the region. The platform is free to use and can be accessed through United Way’s website at volunteer.uwpv.org.

A VolunteerConnect online learning session will be held today, Feb. 7, from noon to 1 p.m. UWPV will also host a Mix & Mingle today from 5 to 6 p.m. at the United Way Service Center, 1441 Main St., Springfield to celebrate the kickoff of VolunteerConnect, including a live demonstration of the platform.

“Volunteerism is one of the most powerful resources at our disposal,” said Megan Moynihan, UWPV’s interim president and CEO. “We’re excited to leverage technology in the form of a volunteer portal, along with in-person workshops and events, to help area nonprofits connect with those who want to help.”

Registration is free and available through Eventbrite by clicking here.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — Hampden County District Attorney Anthony Gulluni visited United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) headquarters this week, bringing with him a large donation of toys. The donation from the District Attorney’s Office capped off UWPV’s annual Hope for the Holidays campaign, a holiday gift drive for children in the region.

“We have the unique opportunity to distribute toys to the families we serve weekly in our Springfield food pantry,” said Megan Moynihan, UWPV interim president and CEO. “Without the support of our corporate partners and community members, we would not be able to give our families the extra help they may need this holiday season.”

Thanks to a local businessman, a vintage Fiat sat inside the TD Bank building in downtown Springfield for the past several weeks. UWPV invited donors to help “Fill the Fiat” with educational toys this holiday season. UWPV collected new, unwrapped toys appropriate for children ages 0-12, such as games, trucks, dolls, sports equipment, books, and puzzles.

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SPRINGFIELD — In partnership with Valley Opportunity Council (VOC) in Holyoke, the United Way of Pioneer Valley is helping keep kids warm this winter with a donation of 80 new winter coats.

“United Way is always here to support the needs of the communities we serve in the Pioneer Valley. We are able to better serve our community in partnership with other local nonprofits like VOC,” said Megan Moynihan, United Way’s interim president and CEO.

The coats will arrive at Valley Opportunity Council’s offices today, Dec. 4.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) has launched its annual Hope for the Holidays campaign, a holiday gift drive for children in the region.

“We have the unique opportunity to distribute toys to the many families we serve every week in our food pantries located in Chicopee, Holyoke, and Springfield. Without the support of our corporate partners and community members, we would not be able to give our families the extra help they may need this holiday season,” said Megan Moynihan, interim president and CEO.

Thanks to a local businessman, a vintage Fiat sits inside the TD Bank building at 1441 Main St. in Springfield for the next several weeks. UWPV invites donors to help “fill the Fiat” with educational toys this holiday season.

UWPV seeks new, unwrapped toys appropriate for children ages 0-12, such as games, trucks, dolls, sports equipment, books, and puzzles. For those who wish to purchase online and have toys shipped, they may be sent to United Way of Pioneer Valley, 1441 Main St., Suite 147, Springfield, MA 01103. Hope for the Holidays will run through Dec. 18.

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HOLYOKE — Last week, the United Way of Pioneer Valley and Holyoke Community College (HCC) celebrated the opening of the Holyoke Community Cupboard, a downtown food pantry that will allow residents to pick up free frozen and refrigerated foods in addition to the usual dry goods and shelf-stable items.

The Holyoke Community Cupboard is located on the basement level of the HCC MGM Culinary Arts Institute, 164 Race St., the scene of a Nov. 2 ribbon-cutting and grand-opening event.

“This is a really special occasion,” HCC President George Timmons said. “It’s important, and we want to do our part to try to be good community partners and help the city of Holyoke meet this need, and so we want to do that by providing healthy choices and healthy food and making it easy to access.”

The new food pantry, part of the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts’ network, will serve Holyoke residents as well as those from neighboring towns. It is open Thursdays from 2:30 to 5:30 p.m.

“We’re incredibly thankful for the collaboration,” said Megan Moynihan, CEO of the United Way of Pioneer Valley. “Thank you so much for opening your arms to the United Way. We saw that there was a gap in services and that it was very important to get a food pantry into Holyoke. Capacity-wise, we couldn’t do it alone.”

Among those present and taking part in the ribbon cutting were state Rep. Patricia Duffy; Andrew Morehouse, executive director of the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts; and Jordan Hart, executive director of the Greater Holyoke Chamber of Commerce.

“Over my 10 years of working here, it’s been really great to see the evolution and how much HCC has really invested in downtown Holyoke,” Hart said. “Economic development in downtown is so important to all the businesses in the community, so HCC’s presence down here with the culinary institute and the Picknelly Center [at 206 Maple St.] is really important. Congratulations to the United Way and HCC for your continued involvement in downtown Holyoke.”

This is the third pantry operated by UWPV after the agency opened sites in Springfield and Chicopee.

“We hope to use this collaboration as a means of finding innovative solutions to food security and to collectively support other initiatives,” said Lee Drewitz, UWPV’s director of Program Operations. “This includes offering food demonstrations using food-pantry staples and educating the community about the emergency food pantry system.”

HCC also operates a food pantry on campus as part of its Thrive Student Resource Center, which was founded in 2015 with assistance from the United Way of Pioneer Valley.

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SPRINGFIELD — The United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) announced that the next OnBoard matching event will be held on Thursday, Dec. 7 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the MassMutual Center.

The OnBoard matching event is part of a volunteer development program that connects interested, talented individuals with area nonprofit organizations looking to attract new committee and board members to their work. It is an opportunity for potential volunteers to expand their talents, and for local service agencies to connect with a diverse audience.

“UWPV is excited to bring together boards seeking enthusiastic new members with local residents who want to become involved, true to our tradition of matching needs to resources,” said Scott Grodsky, board chairperson.

Both those seeking to host a nonprofit table and those who would like to explore board seats as well as board-level committees can register on Eventbrite by clicking here.

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SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) announced the grand opening of its Holyoke Community Cupboard on Thursday, Nov. 2 at 164 Race St. in Holyoke from 10:30 a.m. to noon. The result of a partnership among Holyoke Community College (HCC), the HCC MGM Culinary Arts Institute, and United Way of Pioneer Valley, this new food pantry will have the capacity to serve many Holyoke residents, as well as neighbors in nearby towns.

The Holyoke Community Cupboard is located within the Culinary Arts Institute building on Race Street, an area identified as a food desert in the city. UWPV and HCC are excited to use the Culinary Arts Institute space to build collaborative solutions to food insecurity that puts people first.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley announced the return of the Stuff the Bus program, which provides backpacks filled with school supplies for students who are homeless throughout Hampden County, Granby, and South Hadley. Stuff the Bus relies on donations of school supplies from the community.

“We are fortunate to have generous donors who want to ensure that every student begins the school year with the supplies they need. And we are grateful to Peter Pan Bus Lines, who lend a bus and driver each year to deliver the backpacks to the school districts, and to Western Mass News, who has been our media partner for the past several years,” said Megan Moynihan, interim president and CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley.

Items needed most include spiral notebooks, composition books, looseleaf paper, crayons, index cards, pencil sharpeners, erasers, glue sticks, highlighters, and rulers. Click here to order supplies through Amazon Wish List and have them delivered to United Way. Supplies may also be dropped off at the United Way of Pioneer Valley offices at 1441 Main St. in Springfield, or at Western Mass News at 1300 Liberty St. in Springfield, through Aug. 7.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley announced the return of the Stuff the Bus program, which provides backpacks filled with school supplies for students who are homeless throughout Hampden County, Granby, and South Hadley.

United Way works with the McKinney-Vento representatives for each school district in its geographic footprint to gather the number of K-12 students who are homeless. Stuff the Bus relies on donations of school supplies from the community, and volunteers assist with the packing.

“We are fortunate to have generous donors who want to ensure that every student begins the school year with the supplies they need. And we are grateful to Peter Pan Bus Lines, who lend a bus and driver each year to deliver the backpacks to the school districts,” said Megan Moynihan, interim president and CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley.

Items needed most include spiral notebooks, composition books, looseleaf paper, crayons, index cards, pencil sharpeners, erasers, glue sticks, highlighters, and rulers. Click here to order supplies through Amazon Wish List and have them delivered to United Way. Supplies may also be dropped off at the United Way of Pioneer Valley offices at 1441 Main St., Springfield, through Aug. 7.

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SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV), in partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor Women’s Bureau, Northeast Region, will host an interactive panel discussion to honor the 30th anniversary of the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) at 3 p.m. on Tuesday, June 20 at 1441 Main St., Springfield. The event is free and open to the public, but registration is required.

Panel members include local leaders as well as representatives from the Massachusetts Department of Labor and the U.S. Department of Labor. The discussion will explore Massachusetts paid-leave protections and the impact of paid leave for workers and their families. Information for accessing leave to care for oneself or a family member will be available.

To register for this event, visit www.uwpv.org. Contact Jennifer Kinsman at [email protected] or (413) 693-0212 with any questions.

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SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) will offer a free OnBoard workshop for newly elected nonprofit board members as well as potential nonprofit board members.

The interactive workshop will be held on Thursday, June 1 from 2 to 4:30 p.m., with a social hour directly following the training. Registration is required to attend. Workshop topics include how to identify boards that align with your own interests and how to get your name on a nonprofit’s radar as a potential board member. Various board models will also be discussed.

“Since incorporating the OnBoard program into the UWPV family of programs, it has been our intent to provide relevant training and workshops for new board members in the region,” said Jason Newmark, president of the UWPV board. “We believe this is a significant way for UWPV to support our fellow nonprofit organizations. We invite new and potential board members to take full advantage of the abundant, shared knowledge that will be in the room.”

Space in the program is limited, so UWPV encourages people to register soon. To do so, contact Jennifer Kinsman at (413) 693-0212 or [email protected].

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SPRINGFIELD — In partnership with Holyoke Community College (HCC), United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) recently opened a pantry providing shelf-stable food for Holyoke residents in the Picknelly Adult and Family Education Center (PAFEC) at 206 Maple St. The PAFEC Cupboard is open on Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. by appointment.

In a geographic area with significant need for food, this pantry opened just as extra COVID-19 SNAP benefits came to an end on March 2. “UWPV is excited to partner with HCC to expand our food programs, particularly in the downtown Holyoke area,” said Megan Moynihan, interim president and CEO of UWPV.

UWPV also operates the Chicopee Cupboard at 226 Exchange St. in Chicopee, as well as the Springfield Cupboard at 1441 Main St. in Springfield, each located in a food desert.

“Today, more than ever, we need to help our community and provide these kinds of essential services to put food on peoples’ tables,” Holyoke Ward 6 City Councilman Juan Anderson-Burgos said. “It is very important, so thank you so much for what UWPV is doing.”

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SPRINGFIELD — The United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) is partnering with Inclusive Strategies to offer a free OnBoard training session for newly-elected nonprofit board members as well as potential nonprofit board members.

The purpose of the OnBoard training is to learn how to build and retain relationships for inclusive board opportunities while gaining a better awareness on how to align one’s experiences with a local mission.

The training will be held on Thursday, March 2 from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m., with a social hour directly following the training. Registration is required to attend. Training topics include how to play an active role on a board, how to be an effective leader, how to enhance cross-cultural communication, and more. A panel of seasoned board members will be guests of the program to share their perspectives and experiences.

“Since incorporating the OnBoard program into the UWPV family of programs, it has been our intent to provide relevant training for new board members in the region,” said Jason Newmark, president of the UWPV board. “We believe this is a significant way for UWPV to support our fellow nonprofit organizations. The content in this session is stellar, and we invite new and potential board members to take full advantage of the abundant, shared knowledge that will be in the room.”

Space in the program is limited, so UWPV encourages people to register soon. To do so, contact Jennifer Kinsman at (413) 693-0212 or [email protected].

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — The Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) is a program funded by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and designed to supplement and expand the ongoing work of local social0service organizations to provide shelter, food, and supportive services to individuals and families who are experiencing, or are at risk of experiencing, homelessness or hunger.

The United Way Pioneer Valley (UWPV) serves as the administrator for Hampden County, South Hadley, and Granby for all EFSP funds. With the help of a local board comprised of local community leaders, UWPV determines how funding is allocated through a competitive grant application process.

EFSP funding for Phase 40 recently became available, resulting in the distribution of $258,500 to be disbursed on a reimbursement basis to local nonprofit organizations.

“We are honored to be the vehicle through which these funds are allocated to the community, to the people most challenged with finding food and shelter,” said Jason Newmark, president of the UWPV board. “We are especially grateful to our local board partners at Catholic Charities, the Red Cross, etc., who help us make this happen.”

EFSP funds must be used to supplement food and shelter services and may not be used as seed money for new programs. The key responsibility of participating organizations is to provide assistance within the intent of their programs.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) has launched its annual Hope for the Holidays campaign, a holiday gift drive for children in the region.

“We have the opportunity to collect toys from many of our donors and corporate partners, and then ensure they get into the hands of families who need a little extra help during the holidays,” said Jason Newmark, chair of the UWPV board.

Thanks to a local businessman, a vintage Fiat will sit inside the TD Bank building at 1441 Main St. in Springfield for the next several weeks. UWPV invites donors to help fill the Fiat with educational toys this holiday season. This serves as one of the main donation drop-off sites. Other drop-off sites include the Tavern Restaurant, Shortstop Bar and Grill, and Westfield Gas & Electric (100 Elm St.), all in Westfield. Additional drop-off locations are the Granville Library, the Russell Library, and Good Works Coffee House in Chicopee.

UWPV seeks new, unwrapped toys appropriate for children ages 0-12, such as games, trucks, dolls, sports equipment, books, and puzzles. For those who wish to purchase online and have toys shipped, they may be sent to United Way of Pioneer Valley, 1441 Main St., Suite 147, Springfield, MA 01103. Hope for the Holidays will run through mid-December.

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SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) has created a relief fund through its Feed a Family campaign to assist residents of Puerto Rico.

“In support of the many families in our local communities with roots in Puerto Rico, UWPV has initiated fundraising efforts to raise money for those who suffered devastating losses because of Hurricane Fiona,” said Jason Newmark, board president. “UWPV has the experience, resources, and relationships necessary to ensure all monies raised are provided quickly and directly to the most effective relief organizations on the ground in Puerto Rico today.”

Added Waleska Lugo-DeJesus, CEO of Inclusive Strategies, “as an ambassador for United Way, I ask for your help during our Feed a Family drive. For the greatest impact, please donate to Feed a Family through United Way and join our efforts to give 50% to feed families in Western Massachusetts. The other 50% will be directed to families suffering from the damage of Hurricane Fiona through pre-coordinated efforts in Puerto Rico. I have heard stories of mud swallowing homes and streets, of lack of water, and enormous loss of crops. Thank you for your generosity in support of United Way of Pioneer Valley.”

Those wishing to contribute to the relief fund should visit www.uwpv.org/feed-a-family.

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SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley announced that it has worked with multiple nonprofit agencies to compile a list of meaningful, team-building volunteer opportunities throughout Hampden County for this year’s Day of Caring on Friday, Sept. 23.

This year’s Day of Caring sites include Stanley Park, Camp Moses, Square One, Camp Shepard, Ronald McDonald House, Westfield Schools, Camp Lewis Perkins, Boys & Girls Club of Chicopee, and United Way of Pioneer Valley, among other locations.

Any individuals or corporate teams seeking to volunteer on that day can view the opportunities and sign up on United Way’s volunteer portal at uwpv.org/dayofcaring.

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SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) will host a ‘new home’ celebration for the Chicopee Cupboard Food Pantry today, Aug. 16 from 11 a.m. to noon at 226 Exchange St. in Chicopee. Anyone interested in learning more about the fight against food insecurity is welcome to tour the expanded facility.

The Chicopee Cupboard, powered by the United Way of Pioneer Valley, provides shelf-stable food, fresh produce and dairy items, and frozen food to anyone in need. These items are available thanks to the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, grants, and donations.

“We are honored to be able to battle any and all food insecurity in the great city of Chicopee,” said Paul Mina, president and CEO of the United Way of Pioneer Valley. “Our team is eager to provide our clients the best services possible.”

To make an appointment, call Lee Drewitz at (413) 693-0213.

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SPRINGFIELD ­— United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) announced two new appointments within the company.

Longtime employee Megan Moynihan has been promoted to serve as UWPV’s chief operating officer. In this role, she will oversee all daily operations and fundraising. She previously held the positions of senior director of Finance and manager of Finance & Operations, and she has been in UWPV’s Finance department since 2012. Moynihan holds a bachelor’s degree in finance and administration from Salve Regina University and is a graduate of the Springfield Leadership Institute program.

Sydney Brady joined UWPV in June as the call-center supervisor for the Call2Talk Center in Springfield. Call2Talk is United Way’s emotional-support and suicide-prevention hotline. Brady holds a bachelor’s degree from Lasell University and previously served as a Call2Talk intern. She is currently earning her master’s degree in Social Work at Springfield College.

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SPRINGFIELD — The Dora D. Robinson Women’s Leadership Council, an affiliate group of United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) will distribute hundreds of purses filled with resources, gifts, and essentials to women in Holyoke, South Hadley, and Granby today, Aug. 11, as part of its Power of the Purse initiative.

The event will begin this morning at the headquarters of Girl Scouts of Central and Western Massachusetts, 301 Kelly Way, Holyoke.

Following several successful Power of the Purse events in other communities, the Women’s Leadership Council is continuing this initiative.

“We are extremely grateful to the many local companies who pulled their employees together to hold collection drives to support Power of the Purse,” said Alice Buckner, director of Resource Development. “Volunteers from the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department, Westover Job Corps, and TD Bank helped sort and pack the purses and fillers. They will in turn get them in the hands of the women who need them in Holyoke, South Hadley, and Granby.”

The special resource key rings in these purses are successfully connecting women with free services and supports. Receiving a personal, unique purse filled with uplifting messages and crucial information often leads to utilization of the supports available.

Sponsors and partners include Bacon Wilson, Belmont Laundry, Comcast, Eink, Hampden County Sheriff After Incarceration Support Services, Ladybug Body-Mind Healing, M&T Bank, PeoplesBank, Solenis, Surner Heating, TD Bank, Viability MOMS Group, Vivid Salon & Spa, and Westover Job Corps Center.

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SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley announced that the 2022 Day of Caring will take place on Friday, Sept. 23.

“The autumn Day of Caring is always a popular event that benefits many nonprofits in the region. Our business partners generously give their time to help with meaningful projects such as painting, landscaping, and assembling play equipment at locations throughout Hampden County, Granby, and South Hadley,” said Paul Mina, president and CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley.

Anyone interested in local volunteer opportunities can visit volunteer.uwpv.org to register as a volunteer. Day of Caring opportunities will be posted as the details are finalized, and other opportunities year-round are hosted on this site as well.

Agencies who are interested in hosting a Day of Caring location, or corporations interested in sponsorships and/or bringing a group of volunteers, can contact Jennifer Kinsman, director of Community Impact, at [email protected] or (413) 693-0212.

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SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley announced the return of the Fiat at 1441 Main St., Springfield, in the interior rotunda. This time, anyone interested can stop by and make donations of school supplies to fill the Fiat as part of United Way’s Stuff the Bus initiative. Stuff the Bus provides backpacks filled with school supplies for students who are homeless throughout Hampden County, Granby, and South Hadley.

United Way works with McKinney-Vento representatives in each school district to gather the number of students K-12 who are homeless. This year, more than 2,000 students are in need. United Way relies on donations of school supplies from the community, and volunteers assist with the packing.

“We are fortunate to have generous donors who want to ensure that every student begins the school year with the supplies they need. And we are grateful to Peter Pan Bus Lines, who lend a bus and driver each year to deliver the backpacks to the school districts,” said Paul Mina, president and CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley.

Items needed most include notebooks, composition books, filler paper, crayons, index cards, pencil sharpeners, erasers, highlighters, and rulers. Supplies may be dropped off at 1441 Main St. by the Fiat through Aug. 16. Other drop-off sites include Target and Macy’s at the Holyoke Mall and Balise dealerships.

For more information on our Stuff the Bus initiative and needed items, visit www.uwpv.org/stuff-the-bus.

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SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley will host a luncheon in honor of its 100th-anniversary year, alongside special guest Chirlane McCray, the former first lady of New York City and native of Springfield.

Today’s unprecedented challenges have low- to moderate-income households struggling with an economic downturn due to inflation and other consequences of the prolonged pandemic. The United Way of Pioneer Valley envisions a future where everyone has the support they need to succeed. To date, it has invested more than $193 million toward essential support to help keep communities stable, with the assistance of generous community investors.

The luncheon will take place on Thursday, June 2 from noon to 2 p.m. at the Sheraton Springfield Monarch Place Hotel, located at One Monarch Place, Springfield.

“We are very honored to have the former first lady of New York City, Chirlane McCray, as the featured speaker for our centennial luncheon. Her personal story of growing up in Western Massachusetts, her journey, and her public service is truly inspiring,” said Paul Mina, president and CEO of the United Way of Pioneer Valley.

McCray currently serves on the faculty at the Yale School of Medicine, working with the Yale Child Study Collaborative. She is also a senior advisor for strategic initiatives at the National Council of Mental Wellbeing. As the firstl of New York City, she was nationally recognized as a champion for mental-health reform. Named a 2019 World Health Organization Champion and a 2020 Empire Whole Health Hero by Crain’s New York Business, she is the founder of Thrive NYC, the most comprehensive mental-health plan of any city or state in the nation, which has been made permanent with the Mayor’s Office of Community Mental Health. She created the Cities Thrive Coalition, bringing together more than 200 mayors, county officials, and thought leaders from all 50 states to improve mental-health and substance-use treatment. As the co-chair of New York City’s Taskforce on Racial Inclusion & Equity, McCray helped ensure that the city’s recovery from COVID-19 focused on the hardest-hit communities with improved access to healthcare, broadband, small-business support, and greater representation in government. She also chaired the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City and co-chaired the NYC Commission on Gender Equity.

“It means a great deal to me to be honored by the United Way of Pioneer Valley,” McCray said. “Because of the incredible work this organization does and because of my deep affection for my birthplace, of all the accolades I have received, this one is especially rewarding.”

United Way will be accepting legacy gifts to commemorate its 100th anniversary. A legacy gift is a one-time contribution starting at $500, in addition to individuals’ normal annual support. All legacy level gifts will be memorialized on the 100th-anniversary Wall of Hope.

If interested, contact Meghan Rothschild at (413) 218-4994 or [email protected].

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SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) has merged with the Springfield-based nonprofit OnBoard. Continuing under the same name as a UWPV program, OnBoard will continue hosting biennial conferences to increase diversity on the boards of local and regional nonprofits, and work more closely with nonprofits to build diversity through trainings and other tools.

Leadership Pioneer Valley, which provides training and support for rising nonprofit professionals in the region, will work with UWPV to support the program.

An OnBoard matching event is scheduled for today, Dec. 7, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Valley Venture Mentors, 276 Bridge St., Springfield.

“I am excited that the OnBoard programs will continue, now with the strength and support of the United Way,” said Ellen Freyman, founder of OnBoard and partner at Shatz, Schwartz, and Fentin. “Over the years, our area nonprofits and individuals looking to get involved have come to expect and look forward to the OnBoard matching events. OnBoard has facilitated many new relationships not only benefiting those participating, but also the community at large.”

Paul Mina, president and CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley, added that “OnBoard has been a successful initiative for years, and I believe our plan to expand the popular tabling event into working with nonprofits and building diversity on an individual level will help our nonprofit sector evolve.”

The chairman sponsors for this year’s event are PeoplesBank and Country Bank. Other organizations providing sponsorships are Springfield College; Shatz, Schwartz and Fentin, P.C.; New Valley Bank; Monson Savings Bank; Belt Technologies; the Davis Foundation; the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts; BusinessWest; the Republican; Westfield Bank, People’s United Bank, and the Mason Wright Foundation.

Registration information can be found at uwpv.org/onboard, and donations can be made at uwpv.org/donate.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — As part of its Hope for the Holidays program, United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) announced Fill the Fiat, a unique opportunity to stuff a very small car full of holiday cheer for those in need.

Paul Mancinone, chairman of the board for Mercy Medical Center, has loaned UWPV his vintage Fiat 500 for the event, and it is currently sitting inside the TD Bank building, 1441 Main St., near the UWPV office in downtown Springfield, ready for donations of unwrapped holiday gifts through Dec. 7.

“It is truly an honor for Mercy Medical Center and Trinity Health Of New England to work with the United Way, continuing its mission and commitment to serving those in need,” Mancinone said. “By partnering with the United Way of Pioneer Valley, Fill the Fiat will help bring educational toys and much-needed clothing to those children in need in downtown Springfield and the eastern and western parts of Hampden County. We are blessed to have this opportunity to serve.”

Hope for the Holidays is seeking educational toys, as well as socks and pajamas, for infants and children through age 12. Learn more at uwpv.org/hope.

“United Way of Pioneer Valley has always believed in trying new ideas and forging partnerships with the community to solve its problems,” said Paul Mina, president and CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley. “I implore our community to fill this Fiat full of presents so we can provide hope, dignity, and holiday cheer to those most in need this holiday season.”

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley is looking to the community for support as it launches its Feed-a-Family 2021 fundraiser: Feed-a-Family for Fifty. Every donation of $50 or more will help United Way of Pioneer Valley feed a family of four a full holiday meal, including turkey and all the fixings.

Feed-a-Family is United Way of Pioneer Valley’s largest fundraising effort in support of its feeding-the-hungry initiative. Only with generous support from the community can it raise the funds needed to ensure its neighbors and friends in the Pioneer Valley have enough to eat during the holidays and throughout the year. The United Way invites donors to stop into its food pantries anytime to observe or to volunteer as well, so individuals can see firsthand return on their community investment. Participants can make donations to Feed-a-Family by clicking here.

Every act of generosity counts. Again, just $50 covers a holiday meal of turkey and all the fixings for a family of four.

United Way of Pioneer Valley looks at each gift as an investment into the community’s future. The organization aims to impact the community today and build the foundation for tomorrow through strong partnerships with volunteers, local businesses, government, and nonprofit organizations.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) has merged with the Springfield-based nonprofit OnBoard. Continuing under the same name as a UWPV program, OnBoard will continue hosting biennial conferences to increase diversity on the boards of local and regional nonprofits, and work more closely with nonprofits to build diversity through trainings and other tools.

Leadership Pioneer Valley, which provides training and support for rising nonprofit professionals in the region, will work with UWPV to support the program.

An OnBoard matching event is scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 7 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Valley Venture Mentors, 276 Bridge St., Springfield.

“I am excited that the OnBoard programs will continue, now with the strength and support of the United Way,” said Ellen Freyman, founder of OnBoard and partner at Shatz, Schwartz, and Fentin. “Over the years, our area nonprofits and individuals looking to get involved have come to expect and look forward to the OnBoard matching events. OnBoard has facilitated many new relationships not only benefiting those participating, but also the community at large.”

Paul Mina, president and CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley, added that “OnBoard has been a successful initiative for years, and I believe our plan to expand the popular tabling event into working with nonprofits and building diversity on an individual level will help our nonprofit sector evolve.”

Registration information can be found at uwpv.org/onboard, and donations can be made at uwpv.org/donate.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley is holding volunteer signups for Day of Caring 2021, which takes place on Friday, Sept. 24. Volunteers may sign up at uwpv.org/doc21-events.

“There is a greater need than ever for kindness, good deeds, and building our sense of community this year,” said Paul Mina, president and CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley. “I implore anyone with free time on or around Day of Caring 2021 to sign up and do good with us. Help our nonprofits, who have struggled greatly through the COVID-19 pandemic, and you will start your last weekend of September with the best night’s sleep you can find — knowing you’ve done a good thing when it was needed most.”

This year, Day of Caring sites include Chicopee Boys & Girls Club, Chicopee Child Development Center, Stanley Park in Westfield, Habitat for Humanity, Westfield Schools, Springfield Boys & Girls Club, Gray House, and YMCA of Greater Springfield, among others. Volunteers will be instructed to follow COVID-19 safety protocols at each location.

Learn more about Day of Caring, the United Way’s annual day of giving back, at uwpv.org/day-of-caring, or donate at uwpv.org/donate.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — The United Way of Pioneer Valley announced it has officially opened volunteer signups for Day of Caring 2021, which takes place on Friday, Sept. 24. Volunteers may sign up at uwpv.org/doc21-events.

“There is a greater need than ever for kindness, good deeds, and building our sense of community this year,” said Paul Mina, president and CEO of the United Way of Pioneer Valley. “I implore anyone with free time on or around Day of Caring 2021 to sign up and do good with us. Help our nonprofits, who have struggled greatly through the COVID-19 pandemic, and you will start your last weekend of September with the best night’s sleep you can find — knowing you’ve done a good thing when it was needed most.”

Greg Williams, council program director for the Boy Scouts of America Western Massachusetts Council, added that “the United Way Day of Caring volunteers love coming to our 1,300 acres in the woods while providing essential work hours that allow us to better deliver the promise of scouting to thousands of youth throughout Western Massachusetts.”

Learn more about the United Way Day of Caring at uwpv.org/day-of-caring, or donate at uwpv.org/donate.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) announced its latest initiative to feed the hungry in the Pioneer Valley: a food pantry in downtown Chicopee. Called Chicopee Cupboard, it will offer food to those in need on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Chicopee Cupboard, located at 32 Center St., will open on Thursday, April 15 at 10 a.m. with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. People in need of food are welcome to call (413) 693-0213 to make an appointment starting on April 15 at 11 a.m.

“Last year, we surveyed our community partners, local businesses, municipal governments, and state officials on what the Pioneer Valley needs from its nonprofit sector, and identified that feeding the hungry is an area where we can do a lot of good in our community,” said Paul Mina, president & CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley. “Chicopee is our first food pantry, and we have more plans to feed the hungry in the Pioneer Valley this year.”

More information can be found at uwpv.org/chicopee-cupboard, and donations can be made at uwpv.org/donate.

 

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — In cooperation with the office of Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno and Colebrook Realty Services Inc., United Way of Pioneer Valley will host a drive-thru, socially distant trick-or-treating event on Saturday, Oct. 31 between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the TD Bank parking lot in downtown Springfield.

Families with children 12 and under, accompanied by an adult, are welcome to attend, and 3,000 bags of candy, toys, and information on community resources will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Everyone must remain in their vehicles to ensure safety.

“We are glad to be a part of the mayor’s efforts to keep our community’s children happy during an extremely difficult year,” said Paul Mina, president and CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley.

Added Sarno, “thanks again to Paul Mina. We can always count on our United Way to bring some holiday cheer to our children and families.”

More information is available at uwpv.org/boo-bash, and donations can be made at uwpv.org/donate.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — As part of its COVID-19 response efforts, United Way of Pioneer Valley has distributed a round of personal protective equipment (PPE) and other COVID-19-related items to multiple area nonprofits and municipalities.

Recipients of PPE to date include the Agawam Department of Public Health, Boys and Girls Club of Chicopee, Chicopee Food Force, Granville Fire Department, Granville Police Department, Granville Public Library, Link to Libraries, Lovin’ Spoonfuls, Ludlow Senior Center, Ministry en Motion, Neighbors Helping Neighbors, One Holyoke CDC, Quarry Hill Community School in Monson, Southwick Senior Center, Tolland Fire Department, and Westfield Senior Center.

Distributions include various sizes of hand-sanitizer bottles, hand-sanitizing stations, disposable masks, gloves, face masks, face shields, cleaning wipes, and countertop sneeze guards. Donations also included hula hoops and pool noodles to help young children learn about social distancing.

“Keeping our municipal governments and community essential services such as food pantries safely open for business is our top priority, and we thank our community’s generous contributors for our ability to help keep essential workers in Hampden County, Granby, and South Hadley safe,” said Paul Mina, president and CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) announced it will be able to provide backpacks full of school supplies to all 2,600 students who are homeless in its service area of Hampden County, Granby, and South Hadley. Thanks to generous funding from MassMutual, the organization has been able to greatly expand the scope of Stuff the Bus and bring help to the students who need it most.

“I am thrilled to work with MassMutual to help what matters most — our children, who are suffering greatly in these difficult times,” said Paul Mina, president and CEO of the United Way of Pioneer Valley.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — Starting on Tuesday, June 30, United Way of Pioneer Valley will start distributing hundreds of boxes of shelf-stable food items to community partner agencies for distribution to potentially thousands of needy clients during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The boxes of shelf-stable food have been secured through United Way’s relationship with MEMA as they distribute food throughout the Commonwealth in response to the ongoing pandemic. The first truckload will arrive at United Way headquarters in Springfield on June 30 at 10 a.m.

“We are honored to play a part in the Commonwealth’s COVID-19 response efforts,” said Paul Mina, president and CEO of United Way of Pioneer Valley. “We have worked with MEMA closely in their relief efforts for Hampden County and are happy to continue to help.”

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — To help relieve the boredom of Hampden County’s children during a difficult time, the United Way of Pioneer Valley has partnered with numerous community organizations to deliver more than 1,000 educational, age-appropriate to families hit hard by COVID-19.

The United Way’s Joe Mina moves a pallet of donated toys.

Thanks to its partnership with Good360, the toys arrived at the United Way’s office on May 13 and are being distributed to the following organizations who will pass them along to children in need: Boys & Girls Clubs of West Springfield, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Westfield, Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Holyoke, YMCA of Greater Springfield, and Holyoke Housing Authority.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) has been appointed administrator for Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) grant funding from FEMA and the Department of Homeland Security, which appropriated supplemental funding in the amount of $194,555 for Phase 37 and $277,380 for CARES grants.

With a board comprised of local community leaders, UWPV will determine funding allocation through a competitive application process. These funds will be used to supplement existing food and shelter services, and cannot be given to start new programs.

Funding for Phase 37 and CARES-funded grants is now available. Nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations that serve Hampden County, South Hadley, or Granby may apply. Allocations are to be applied toward supplementing existing food and shelter services. Applications are due by Friday, May 22 at noon. For information or to apply, contact Nicole Young, manager of Community Investments, at [email protected].