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As the world has had to learn to be more responsive to immediate and continuously changing needs, Spokane County United Way has too. 

Our local programs have felt the increasing need of housing, new and unanticipated need for better social and emotional health supports, and programs that reach youth and young adults to address and mitigate factors that contribute to chronic homelessness. The pressure placed on young families and children by the pandemic, including the need to attend school virtually and childcare gaps created when parents needed to be at work, only magnified the existing gaps in accessing services. The need for emergency food, shelter, and support for families caught by unexpected unemployment also skyrocketed.

We responded with new and deeper investments in programs with partner agencies, a hallmark of Spokane County United Way and how embedded we are in our community since our beginning more than 100 years ago. We spearheaded the Anchor Community Initiative in partnership with A Way Home Washington and the City of Spokane, which continues to work to reduce and end youth and young adult homelessness. Through our Built for Zero initiative, we are working to identify and place homeless adults and veterans in transitional housing while supporting them in treatment and skill-building to break the cycle of chronic homelessness.  

And through this work, we have enabled Spokane to officially produce a sustained, measurable reduction in youth and young adult homelessness. Spokane is the first community in Washington State to have a measurable reduction in active homelessness for any population and third in the nation to achieve this milestone. This is work that creates lasting change for our community.

Spokane County United Way’s purpose remains to meet the challenges that we are facing today and prepare for a better tomorrow. We know no true change is achieved without the work of many, and this includes your continued and generous support. To live better, we must LIVE UNITED. 

As we look ahead, please consider investing in the future of children, young adults, and families across our county. Because of your trust in Spokane County United Way to be good stewards of your investment, we will continue to be here to serve and uplift our community on your behalf.   

With appreciation,

John Dickson 
President and CEO, Spokane County United Way

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