WORCESTER — The Women’s Initiative of United Way of Central Massachusetts recently awarded $299,208 to fund 11 programs in Central Massachusetts that directly impact the lives of area girls.
These programs are focused on reducing the incidence of violence affecting girls by building, strengthening and supporting the development of healthy, safe and confident girls: Boys & Girls Club of Worcester, SMART Girls Plus program, $35,000; Clark University, All Kinds of Girls program, $14,000; Edward M. Kennedy Community Health Center, Strong Girls Healthy Choices program, $30,000; Girls Inc. of Worcester, Dear World: Voices of Worcester program, $35,000; Latino Education Institute, Latina Achievers in Search of Success, Worcester State Foundation, $35,631; LUK Crisis Center Inc., Project Shine, $15,356; Seven Hills Family Services, Just Us Girls program, $18,345; The Community Builders, Plumley Village, One Circle program, $15,000; Worcester Youth Center, One Circle Program, $15,000; Youth Opportunities Upheld Inc., ASCEND Program, $28,000; YWCA of Central Massachusetts, Girls Promoting Safety program, $57,876 .
In addition, Women’s Initiative continues to offer free community economic empowerment conferences, called “Dollar $cholar,” for eighth-grade girls in Worcester and surrounding towns. During the last few years, nearly 2,500 girls from Central Massachusetts were taught the value of financial literacy for economic self-sufficiency. This year, Women’s Initiative’s members mentored more than 400 girls from Auburn and Shrewsbury, teaching about budgeting and money, encouraging girls to explore their dreams, and giving them the opportunity to develop academically, socially, and emotionally.
The Women’s Initiative, an affinity group of United Way, is comprised of women who have come together to make a difference in the community. It is part of a national trend of women engaging in leadership and philanthropy, organizing to create a powerful force to effect change in their society. Working with volunteer committees of community leaders, the Women’s Initiative has engaged more than 1,100 members in their work, with total collective fundraising reaching the $3 million mark during their 10th anniversary year.
United Way of Central Massachusetts connects people and resources to improve the community. United Way ensures that the most vulnerable have a safety net to stabilize them today, while working to break the cycle of poverty for the next generation. For more information about United Way of Central Massachusetts or Women’s Initiative, visit http://www.unitedwaycm.org.
Worcester Telegram & Gazette, Telegram.com