Brown County United Way’s mission is to unite people, ideas, and resources to create community solutions that strengthen every person and every community. In Brown County, one in three households struggles to meet their most basic needs. Our community goal is to place 10,000 individuals on the path to stability in 10 years. Our target population are those living below the ALICE Threshold.
Our Approach to Community Change
We fight for the dream that every person in Brown County will have access to quality education, health, financial stability, and connection to community. These are the 4 things we believe every individual and family need to achieve stability – and in turn, transform the community. This is why all of our investments of time, money, and organizational resources are focused on education, health, financial stability, and connection to community, and seen throughout our Impact Framework.
Impact Plan Framework
Community Goal: 10,000 individuals on the path to stability in 10 years
Direct service to individuals:
- System of care grants
- Learning communities
- Continuous Quality Improvement
- Neighborhood-based efforts
- Best practice training opportunities
- 2-1-1 products
- Advocacy platform
- Voice of ALICE
- Community-based research
Strategic investments of time, dollars and organizational resources
Brown County United Way invests in local direct service programs to positively impact individuals. We currently have 23 programs receiving 5-year system of care grants through our 2019-2024 grant cycle.
Brown County United Way leads and partners on efforts to improve systems. Our Impact Initiatives are primarily “place-based,” focusing on neighborhoods. Our goal is to improve neighborhood cohesion, growth, and strength through research, evidence-based solutions, community partnership, and voices of residents.
We seek out the voice of the community and advocate for policy change
. Our Voice of ALICE research, which began in 2019, captures the lived experiences of individuals and families in Brown County who are struggling to make ends meet. Their experiences will shape our advocacy agenda.
Neighborhood Partnership Grant – Round 2
Brown County United Way (BCUW) is leading a place-based approach with our Impact Investments that will focus on four area neighborhoods. Our first placed-based endeavors will focus on four eastside Green Bay neighborhoods: Downtown, Joannes Park, Navarino, and Whitney Park. Our objective is to improve neighborhood cohesion, growth, and vitality through research, evidence, community partnerships, and the voices of residents – helping to ensure that neighborhoods are places where people can thrive. We believe strong neighborhoods build strong communities!
Neighborhood Partnership Grants originated with the desire to impact the community on a grassroots level through smaller, flexible, easier to obtain funds ($1,000-$10,000 each) that could be distributed to eligible non-profit organizations in our four-neighborhood cohort service area (Downtown, Navarino, Whitney Park, and Joannes Park). These grants are intended to provide funding for project/program/activity-based initiatives and exclude any funding of on-going services. Creative and innovative proposals have been encouraged if they demonstrate impact for community building and alignment to Brown County United Way Impact Priorities. Round 1 of the Neighborhood Partnership Grant awarded funding to 5 proposals. Round 2 is currently in progress. Please check back soon to see Round 2 results.
We are appreciative of the community’s interest and response to this funding strategy. We look forward to the ongoing partnership and engagement in our neighborhood efforts!
See Our Neighborhood Partnership Grant Recipients: Round 1
Whatsoever You Do, Inc. Street Lights Outreach Block Parties – The organization will coordinate and host neighborhood block picnics located at Whitney park and will be focused on bringing together diverse groups of people. The organization has had a long-running effort of collaborating with local partners in hopes of transforming the park and surrounding neighborhood to be more inclusive and a welcoming space for all. Their desired outcome from this project is that neighbors in Whitney Park will build lasting and supportive relationships with one another. BCUW funding will be used for food for the picnics.
Urban Partnership Community Development Corporation, FarmoryWorks Program – The FarmoryWorks program will target economically displaced workers with a newly branded, more intensive, cohort-based FarmoryWorks training program that provides industry-aligned skill-building, work experience and networking with area employers. This program is a twelve-week service-learning experience–Fish Hatchery Technician and Aquaculture Entrepreneur; and the other is The FarmoryWorks Youth and Family Outreach Program. Participant recruitment will come from the Navarino neighborhood, nearby K-12 schools, the Navarino Neighborhood Association, and the Howe Community Resource Center to attract adult participants as well as build interest among children toward future participation in the FarmoryWorks program. BCUW funding will support Farmory staff salaries and program costs as they grow the FarmoryWorks programs.
Downtown Green Bay, Inc., The Downtown Dining Room – The Downtown Dining Room project aims to provide a comfortable, safe, easily accessible, and welcoming space in the Downtown neighborhood for nearby employees, residents, and visitors to patronize local establishments and dine outdoors. The organization is targeting its efforts at supporting local restaurants and their front-line workers; one of the hardest-hit industries from the COVID-19 pandemic. After being aesthetically transformed, this area will not only be safe and functional, but a destination for the community with the hope to create an increased sense of community and connection, as well as increase additional revenue for downtown businesses, and their employees. BCUW funding will be used to support the improvements made to the physical environment and beautification efforts.
NeighborWorks Green Bay, Neighborhood Infrastructure & Engagement – NeighborWorks Green Bay will be launching several projects and initiatives aimed at neighborhood development. A neighborhood survey will be conducted to glean findings on social connectedness in hopes of driving specific activities designed to engage neighbors and break down barriers between them. A renewed effort at reforming the Downtown Neighborhood Association and Joannes Park Neighborhood Associations will take place. Volunteers from these areas will be engaged to build relationships with neighborhood residents and develop leadership capacities. A particular focus will be on diversity and inclusion to help bring greater neighborhood representation to leadership roles and active neighborhood engagement. Additionally, in partnership with neighborhood residents, Home & Life workshops will bring residents together to learn from each other on topics such as home improvements, and household management. BCUW funding will be used for staffing and program costs.
See Our Neighborhood Partnership Grant Recipients: Round 2
Navarino Neighborhood Association: Increasing Safety through Security Lighting in Navarino Park
The Navarino Neighborhood Association is working to improve the physical environment for increased safety in a communal neighborhood space. Security lights will promote safety of the park for the neighborhood residents as well as organizations that host youth programming and recreational opportunities in the park. The Navarino Neighborhood Association anticipates the increased lighting will abate crime because of the increased visibility in Navarino Park during evening and nighttime hours. BCUW funding will be used to support the request for the project from round one. (Total project cost totaled $9,750, round one and two).
Whitney Park Neighborhood Association: Whitney Park Upgrade 3.0
The Whitney Park Neighborhood Association is continuing its efforts for greater park security and beautification through the implementation of additional park lighting, installation of trash cans, light pole banners, and hanging planters. These efforts are targeted at making the park a public gathering space that residents can confidently commune and patronize. Residents are welcomed into a safe, clean environment to listen to summer concerts, give children a place to play, and dogs to run. Bringing people together in a safe, attractive environment is one of their top priorities.
Literacy Green Bay: Books and Bubbles
Literacy Green Bay (LGB) will work with Brown County Library (BCL) to establish Family Read, Play & Learn Centers at the three laundromats closest to the four neighborhoods cohort. The goal is to support school readiness and enrich the time families spend doing laundry by providing safe, fun spaces and literacy-rich materials and activities that support early brain and language development. Neighborhood cohesion would occur as families naturally come together at these literacy centers. They will learn about the literacy activities offered both at the laundromat as well as throughout the community, especially at LGB and the BCL.
The Einstein Project: Mobile Makerspace Experiences
Einstein Project staff and community volunteers will offer a variety of age and skills-based activities (STEAM programming-science, technology, engineering, arts, math) to promote creativity and critical thinking during the spring and summer months of 2021 The aim is to provide opportunities and access to STEAM experiences to all children by bringing the activities right into the neighborhoods. A Mobile Makerspace truck is equipped with digital fabrication equipment such as a laser cutter, 3D printer(s), and other tools that can be used for design and creation. Children will have access to this equipment as they explore materials and creatively solve problems. Participants may also participate in Creativity Scrimmages, in which teams work to develop a solution to a problem while working with certain design constraints. They will be practicing communication and collaboration skills all while working toward a common goal of achieving the task. The application of design thinking along with the skills in using tools will equip students for solving problems that they see within their own communities.
Background and Rationale: Neighborhood Partnership Grants originated with the desire to impact the community on a grassroots level through smaller, flexible, easier to obtain funds ($1,000-$10,000 each) that could be distributed to eligible non-profit organizations in our four-neighborhood cohort service area (Downtown, Navarino, Whitney Park, and Joannes Park). These grants are intended to provide funding for project/program/activity-based initiatives and exclude any funding of on-going services. Creative and innovative proposals have been encouraged if they demonstrate impact for community building and alignment to Brown County United Way Impact Priorities. The review committees evaluated 7 proposals submitted in this cycle and have approved 5 proposals for funding.
COMMUNITY SCHOOL PARTNERSHIP
Howe Elementary – A Community School
Community schools are academic and social centers that remove barriers to learning and make integrated resources available to address the needs of students, families, and their surrounding neighborhoods. Brown County United Way is partnering with the Green Bay Area Public School District and Howe Community Resource Center to establish Howe Elementary as the district’s flagship Community School. In 2019, we began wrap-around engagement efforts within four neighborhoods surrounding the school (Navarino, Downtown, Joannes Park, and Whitney Park).
Character Playbook is an innovative digital learning experience that uses evidence-based strategies to educate students on how to cultivate and maintain healthy relationships. Last school year over 51 schools in Brown County participated in Character Playbook. There were 2,694 students who combined for over 4,200 hours of learning. You can view the entire impact report of the 2018-2019 school year here.
Looking for Something More?
Join our Emerging Leaders Society and begin working with other professionals and community members. Emerging Leaders collaboratively tackle community challenges and participate in strategic local volunteer projects that make a lasting difference.
We have opportunities with Elmore Elementary school, positions on our Emerging Leader’s Planning Council, or you can bring your own ideas for strategic impact!
Want to learn more or get involved? Explore the icons below!
Join an Impact Council
The Voice of ALICE
Year of Action
If you have any questions, contact Jill Sobieck, Impact Initiatives and Outreach Manager.