Our commitment to racial equity

United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg seeks to mobilize all people to improve lives. In order to unite around key issues facing our region, United Way engages individuals and organizations who represent the diversity of the communities we serve — respecting and valuing the different perspectives they may provide. Together we will more effectively create and implement solutions to our region’s most pressing issues while creating opportunities for a better life for all. 

United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg opposes racism in all its forms. Racial inequity and social injustice are major problems in our society and region, and their causes must be dismantled. 

Our region’s history of systemic racism accelerates and perpetuates generational poverty, educational attainment and crime in underserved communities. In neighborhoods across our service area, it is often people of color – particularly Black residents – who are the most vulnerable. 

United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg recognizes and seeks to address the problems of systemic racism and social injustice. These issues are complex. We approach them from multiple angles and invite the community to join us by providing financial support or donating time and expertise to create real solutions.

1. We research trends to understand the communities and populations that need help the most.

2. We invest in the community. We fund dozens of local nonprofits that provide critical, direct services to people of color in our region. These programs address areas of poverty, hunger, homelessness, access to health care and more.

3. We convene local school systems, colleges and universities, governments, nonprofits, businesses and others to drive systemic change through initiatives like the Petersburg City + Schools Partnership and the Workforce Partnership Team

4. We lead programs that empower individuals and provide knowledge and support to close the opportunity gap for underserved families in our region. These programs include Kindergarten Countdown Camp, Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and more.

Community Investments & Racial Equity

In addition to creating high-quality homes for residents of modest means, Better Housing Coalition equips residents with programs and tools to help them reach their fullest potential at all ages and stages of life. United Way funding supports Senior Coordinated Care, which offers support services to low-income older adults, including health and wellness programs, recreational activities, counseling and entitlements/insurance assistance. Additional funding supports Tech Savvy, a program that provides computer training to workforce development participants, allowing them to utilize community resources in Richmond with confidence as well as to be more successful in their career development and financial stability. 

Racial Breakdown of Population Served
Black – 65%
White – 20%
Unknown Race – 12%
Asian – 1%
Other Race – 2%

Ethnic Breakdown of Population Served
Hispanic/Latinx – 3%
Not Hispanic/Latinx – 85%
Unknown Ethnicity – 12%

Poverty, housing, transportation and household status are examples of Basic Needs. When Basic Needs are not met, it may create barriers to accessing mental health care. Using a coordinated prevention and intervention model, ChildSavers is working to assist families to overcome these barriers. United Way supports Children’s Trauma-Informed Mental Health Services which includes clinic-based, school-based and immediate response therapy that guides children through life’s critical moments. 

Racial Breakdown of Population Served
Black – 65%
White – 17%
Two or more races – 5%

Ethnic Breakdown of Population Served
Hispanic/Latinx – 8%
Not Hispanic/Latinx – 92%
Unknown Ethnicity – 1%

Transportation and credit impact many aspects of life. United Way funding supports Ways to Work which offers fair-interest vehicle loans for individuals with poor or no credit. The Ways to Work program helps individuals with the time-sensitive need of purchasing a car and provides education to help with long-term budgeting habits while facilitating a program that builds credit. Program clients report that owning their own car gives them better choices of daycare, helps them to access medical care for themselves and their children, and allows their children to participate in extracurricular activities. Additionally, having a stronger credit score opens the opportunity of home ownership. 

Racial Breakdown of Population Served
Black – 70%
White – 5%
Other RACE – 3%

Ethnic Breakdown of Population Served
Hispanic/Latinx – 2%
Not Hispanic/Latinx – 76%
Unknown Ethnicity – 21%

For immigrant headed households, a family is strengthened when both children and parents are exposed to educational opportunities. United Way supports Sacred Heart’s Family Literacy Project which consists of English language, Spanish literacy or GED preparation classes for parents and a school readiness program for their children in tandem. Families learn in parallel tracts, then come together at the end of the session to do an activity together.

Ethnic Breakdown of Population Served
Hispanic/Latinx – 98%
Not Hispanic/Latinx – 0%
Unknown Ethnicity – 2%

In addition to covering basic expenses, families and individuals need financial stability to avoid debt, build savings and prepare for unanticipated expenses. The Latino Community Engagement Program provides financial literacy services including: financial education and coaching; income supports access; and employment placement and career improvement. The program also engages Latino individuals and families to realize their own vision for the community by identifying problems and implementing solutions in their own neighborhoods.

Ethnic Breakdown of Population Served
Hispanic/Latinx – 24%
Not Hispanic/Latinx – 76%

Want to meet more of our partners?

These are just a few of our many partners working on the front lines to create lasting change in our region. Visit Our Partners page to learn more.