About United Way

When we work together—pooling our resources, time, and energy—our community impact grows exponentially to create an equitable future for all. ​As a community-focused nonprofit organization, we have identified four areas we can focus our energy, resources, and capabilities: Strong Learners, College and Career Ready, Economic Stability, and Brighter Future. What makes us different from other nonprofits focused on these issues is how we work. We are the ONLY nonprofit that brings together people and resources from every sector – volunteers, advocates and donors; partner agencies, counties and governments to develop and deliver new solutions.

Each of the 1,300+ United Ways in the nation is autonomous and supported by local volunteers. United Way Worldwide, headquartered in Virginia, is the umbrella organization. In Greater Atlanta, we have about 200 staff members working across our 13 counties. Hundreds of volunteer leaders from all walks of life assist with United Way operations, from fundraising to community investments to financial management.


About Giving to United Way

When you give to United Way, you have choices. You can choose to give to United Way’s Child Well-Being Mission Fund or to specific nonprofits. When you direct your dollars to the United Way’s Child Well-Being Mission Fund, you are enabling us to provide the best value for your dollars and the biggest impact on community well-being.

United Way invests Child Well-Being Mission Fund dollars in tackling the critical problems that stand between us and a better quality of life. United Way brings together dozens of nonprofits to identify collaborative solutions that lead to positive outcomes for the community, like self-sufficiency and access to healthcare for all individuals and families, and academic achievement for all children.

Trained community volunteers guide United Way’s Child Well-Being Mission Fund investment decisions, and investments are directed toward nonprofits with proven effectiveness in creating sustainable and measurable contributions to community well-being.

United Way compounds the power of its Child Well-Being Mission Fund investments with the collective clout of thousands of volunteers and advocates as well as county and state governments.

United Way volunteers invest your Child Well-Being Mission Fund contributions in local programs that strengthen our community. Those programs include after-school and mentoring activities that ensure youth are successful in learning, job and life skills training to make people employment-ready, help for people with immediate needs and more.

United Way is working to advance the common good by focusing on education, income, health and homelessness. These are the building blocks for a good quality of life — a quality education that leads to a stable job, enough income to support a family through retirement and good health. And we want to make sure that no one is homeless. Every donor has the option to designate to one or a combination of these areas. Donors also have the option to designate their gift toward United Way 2-1-1 and the Atlanta AIDS Partnership Fund.

Time and again, some of the most generous givers are those who themselves have struggled and needed a helping hand from our community. Everyone should be given an opportunity to express caring through charitable giving, to enjoy the emotional reward that comes from knowing he or she has helped someone else — a homeless mother helped with child care so she can seek employment, a senior able to stay in his home and remain independent, or a family helped to remain financially stable with job training for advancement. Helping our community is a shared responsibility and makes good business sense. Our research shows that 7 out of 10 people in a workplace campaign say, “My company’s support of United Way makes me feel good about my company.”

It is possible to direct your gift to one or more of the many nonprofit organizations that receive United Way grants or to another United Way in the nation. You may also choose to “exclude” a nonprofit, meaning that organization will receive none of your gift.

Less than 13% of every dollar raised by our United Way is used for fundraising and administration — making it one of the lowest overhead costs of any nonprofit in the nation.

About United Way’s Investment Process

Through the United Way Mission Fund, we invest in the smartest ideas and solutions that are making significant long-term changes to our communities.

The Investment Process has undergone a multi-year revolution. We now have a stronger focus on programs, place-based work, and collaboratives that have the greatest impact on improving child well-being scores and the lives of more than 250,000 children by 2027. Grants will be made in the Investment Priority areas – Strong Learners, College and Career Ready, Economic Stability, Brighter Future. In addition to program-based grants, we make general operating grants to provide grantees more flexibility to provide services and adjust their operations because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Investment Process is powered by intuitive, web-based software that makes grant submission and approval easier and transparent, deadlines clearer, data accessible and impact visible for both United Way and applying agencies.

This strategy was triggered by the adoption of the Child Well-Being Agenda in 2016, the increased role of the data in the assessment process and the need to strengthen our grantmaking practices to best position us to achieve our goal of improving the lives of more than 250,000 children by 2027. Grants are more focused on “place” – specifically, areas of low and very low child well-being. Investments will also be made to increase the capacity of partner agencies to operate more effectively in those areas, which are often more challenging areas to work.

The first of multiple grant cycles began in July 2020 with final grant decisions announced in late August 2020.

The Child Well-Being Mission Fund grant has an 18-month duration, September 2020 – February 2022.

About United Way Community Partners

United Way invites organizations that can demonstrate measurable results and are aligned with our priorities to obtain an application by going to unitedwayatlanta.org and then clicking on “For Nonprofits”. When new funding becomes available, we announce funding opportunities through an email to interested agencies in our database. If interested in being added to our database, please visit www.unitedwayatlanta.org/for-nonprofits. Next, click on the “Please add me to your database” button on the right and complete the form. Your request will be processed and you will receive future funding announcements in the areas in which you express interest.