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Stories - Community Impact

Thursday, June 7, 2018
When a person is faced with challenges, it is often easier to collapse under the pressure than to rise above them. For Kelly of Huntington Station, despite the tragedies she’s faced, she knew she had to stay strong for the most important people in her life – her four children. In 2012, Kelly was on a charter bus traveling upstate when the driver fell asleep at the wheel and crashed the bus. Following the accident, she had to undergo years of physical therapy – half of her face was paralyzed, she temporarily lost of the use of her right arm, and she developed a stutter. “One of the hardest...
Wednesday, May 23, 2018
United Way of Long Island and Nassau Inter-County Express (NICE bus) partnered to provide low- and moderate-income Nassau County families and individuals with emergency transportation assistance for bus fares. Everyone Rides NICE has provided more than 72,000 free Metrocards for use on NICE buses to help eligible riders travel to and from school, work, and facilities that offer medical care and other essential needs. Potential recipients will apply for transportation assistance through local social service agencies that are community partners of United Way of Long Island, in addition to...
Monday, March 19, 2018
Meshessna of Freeport is a single mother of two daughters, doing the best she can to retain a sense of normalcy after her divorce two years ago. “I want my kids to be able to stay in their same school, still be close to their friends, live as close to the same life they were living before the divorce,” she explained. But maintaining this life proved difficult, as now she was managing her household with only a single salary. “While I was married, with two incomes, I didn’t really struggle to pay my bills. Now that I’m a single mother, with only one household income, it’s more challenging to...
Thursday, August 24, 2017
Michelle reached out to United Way of Long Island's Family Prosperity Center through a partner agency for assistance with financial responsibility. Her living situation was changing, and she was unsure about how to find new housing. After meeting with a financial counselor, Michelle was able to write down a monthly budget and break down her income vs. expenses. Her current rent was covered by the partner agency; however she would only be receiving this assistance for a specific period of time and wanted to make sure she would be able to pay her new rent when she it became her responsibility....
Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Meet Mary - a 9 year old girl with a bubbly personality and a participant in Choice for All's Student Success Center, a program supported by United Way of Long Island. Mary's mother was referred to the program by a community member that had a child in the program with similar academic concerns. Mary’s mom is a single mother of two with Mary being the youngest. She expressed concerns about Mary's struggle with reading comprehension, decoding and spelling. She has to work two jobs because her eldest is on his way to college and she doesn't have the extra time for Mary as she did with her first...
Wednesday, April 26, 2017
Josephine is many things – a woman, a mother, and a domestic violence survivor. One thing she is not, is a statistic. "I'm just happy to be alive, that I'm not a statistic, because I do know that a couple women in Nassau County lost their lives. I could have been one of them," she reflects. Born and raised in Nassau County, Josephine became involved with a man who was her best friend. He later turned into the father of her third child and consequently, her abuser. When her son was born, she made the heart-breaking choice to put him up for adoption for his own protection due to the constant...
Sunday, March 19, 2017
Daryl is a U.S. Army veteran and a single father raising his 14-year-old daughter in Freeport, doing the best he can to provide her with a happy life. He had been working as an MTA bus driver in Brooklyn for over 10 years, when in 2009 the bus he was driving rolled over a loose construction plate and was dropped into a hole in the street. His hip and back were injured, forcing him to leave work and undergo extensive physical therapy to alieve his pain. In 2013, he was involved in another accident less serious than the first but it aggravated his already sensitive lingering injuries. He...
Thursday, January 12, 2017
Below are two inspiring letters from young people who were helped by our partner agency Adelante of Suffolk County, Inc:  "My name is Estefani. I am a senior student at Central Islip Senior High School. I would have never imaged being in the positioned I am today. Six years ago, I migrated to the United States and came to live with my parents for the first time. The fact that I did not speak any English seemed an astronomical obstacle to overcome. However, my parents' sacrifice gave me the fuel to one day have a better future and be able to attend college. I love being part of the National...
Tuesday, November 29, 2016
Before the first United Way ALICE report, ALICE was a population and a community issue without a name or face. The release of this study offered a new way to accurately quantify these households and to talk about the challenges that they face, just like Richelle of Long Island.  Richelle, a wife and mother of three was struggling to pay her bills on time and keep the house warm during the frigid winter months. She and her husband had both fallen on hard times, severely impacting their income and ability to keep up with household expenses. Despite Richelle and her husband both working full-...
Thursday, October 20, 2016
  My name is Nia and my life matters. I am the only child of a teenage mother who was diagnosed with bi-polar disorder and schizophrenia. During my childhood I felt depressed, worthless, misunderstood and ashamed; I had thoughts of suicide. I thought that suicide would bring me peace and that my absence would take the burden off my family.  I didn't have many friends going up because my mother separated me from my peers. I saw my mother being mistreated because of her condition and constantly worried about a future for my mother and me. I knew what my dad looked like, however he was never a...

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