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July 31, 2013
United Way encourages focus on self-sufficiency and financial stability
Nearly 800 people gathered at the Embassy Suites Loveland on June 6, 2013 for United Way of Larimer County's 11th annual State of the Community event. The event focused on the importance of the community working together to help Larimer County families in Larimer County to become self-sufficient, employed and independent.
Keynote speaker Rocky Scott, Director of Corporate Affairs for Woodward, Inc., focused on the community-level advantages of having more families in Larimer County become “net contributors” rather than “net consumers.”
“It's important to do good, but it's also important to help people fall into the role of being contributors to the world. Helping people to become financially independent is at least as much about being smart as about doing good,” Scott said. “And there's not a single organization here that can address the magnitude of that problem alone. If we don't work together, we're simply not going to make the progress we need to make.”
Yvonne Myers, Health Systems Director at Columbine Health Systems, shared the local impact of the Bridges to Success program. A collaboration between Columbine and Bohemian Foundation, Bridges to Success is a workplace navigator program that helps employees in lower-paying positions address barriers to staying in their jobs.
Loveland resident Beth Hicks inspired the crowd and put a face on the issue of self-sufficiency, sharing her personal story of her struggles to provide for her family as a single mother living in poverty. By utilizing community resources, including Project Self-Sufficiency, Hicks was able to continue her education and is now a self-sufficient, contributing member of the community.
“There's a role for business, there's a role for the faith community, for nonprofits, for educational institutions and for individuals,” said Gordan Thibedeau, President and CEO of United Way of Larimer County. “Everybody needs to be part of this conversation.”
Copyright 2015 United Way of Larimer County