Every year on, and around June 21st, thousands of volunteers around the world come together to build stronger communities. United Way’s 2016 Day of Action is fast approaching; as we prepare for this year’s annual day of public service, it’s worth taking a moment to look back on last year’s Day of Action and celebrate what we accomplished together.
In 2015, 388 United Ways in 21 countries celebrated Day of Action by sorting thousands of donated books, teaching young students how to budget and save money, planting vegetable seeds at more than 12,000 feet, and so much more. None of the great work on Day of Action would have been possible without the generous support of our many partners—partners like Depend®, a brand of Kimberly Clark, which mobilized more than 5,000 of their employees to help United Way impact the lives of more than 310,000 people across 17 U.S. cities.
Many communities used last year’s Day of Action to focus on improving early literacy. In Rhode Island, 100 volunteers sorted 22,460 books for an annual Children’s Book Drive. In Shanghai, China, employees from Eaton China volunteered to read to children, and the company presented United Way Worldwide with a check for RMB100k Yuan ($16,000 USD) to support an early education initiative called Sprout, which has already improved early learning opportunities for 30,000 migrant children.
Other communities chose to focus on alleviating hunger in 2015. One hundred volunteers in Durham, North Carolina broke a new record by creating 1,000 weekend meal kits in just one hour. In Sydney, Australia, United Way organized a community BBQ in Woolloomooloo, the city’s largest social housing community. The BBQ represented a great opportunity for people to break down social barriers, enjoy some wonderful food and get connected to other essential services.
Day of Action serves as a showcase of the excellent work that United Way volunteers can accomplish in a single day and a demonstration of what is possible on 364 other days of the year. Every year, United Way impacts millions of lives. As the largest privately-funded nonprofit in the world, we are able to fight for the education, financial stability and health of every person in every community.
Want to see and learn more about last year's Day of Action? Check out our Storify page for stories and pictures!