CCUW helps funded partners impact the lives of 12,000+ people

Feb. 22, 2023


The Catawba County United Way requires all agencies who receive a grant to provide End of Year (EOY) Reports to show how the funds were used by their program and what its impact on the community was in the past year. 

Here are some highlights from the 2023 (EOY) reports from program directors. Look for more details from the report next week.



  1. Habitat for Humanity of Catawba Valley – Home Repairs
  • 31 served

The Repairs program makes critical repairs on our clients homes that help keep their homes safe, warm, and dry. Without these Repairs our clients would suffer unnecessary health issues, struggle with accessibility in their own homes, and potentially lose their homes to disrepair. One such repair our program did this year repaired a leaking commode and sink faucet and replaced a tub faucet. Before this repair, the client (who lives with a disability) was unable to use her tub and could not use her sink or commode without causing further damage to vital parts of her home. Now that her bathroom has been repaired, the client can live in her home comfortably and without worry.

  • Below 150% of Poverty – 22
  • Above 150% of Poverty – 9
  1. Children’s Advocacy and Protection Center – Child Medical Exam
  • 104 served

Program provides medical exams for those affected by abuse sexual /physical and/or neglect. Victims of these crimes are able to feel safe and taken care of here and know that their “voices will be heard here”. The success that I have seen in the short time as assistant here at the CAPC is that kids that are seen here at the CAPC, come back to visit and say, “hey I remember you, you helped me through one of the hardest times in my life”. I have seen kids walk in the door with their heads held high as they found the confidence to face their accusers in court and see justice served. It is truly a beautiful moment. With the funding from the CCUW you as an organization are also able to “share these moments” because of your financial support.

  1. Salvation Army of Greater Hickory – Boys and Girls Club
  • 187 served

The funds provided a safe space for children to learn and grow: instrument lessons, a tour at the Hickory Music Factory, gymnastics training at Shooting Stars, art lessons at the Hickory Museum of Art, photography classes with Jane St. Clair, and even ballet lessons. "Jim" was a young man who first came to the Club through our athletic football program. While in High School he had already faced many challenges such as gang affiliation, homelessness and emotional trauma. Club staff identified his struggles and began to put a plan in place to help Jim break away from gang activities and other unhealthy lifestyles. With the help of our Club Director Jim enrolled in CVCC with the goal of obtaining a degree. Unfortunately, Jim could not adapt to the culture and values of our athletic program, which led to his dismissal from the football team. The good news is that our Boys and Girls Club remained committed to Jim's future, continuing to provide resources, encouragement and support for him so that he could and would continue his enrollment at CVCC. Jim finished his first semester at CVCC on the Dean's list. Playing football may not be in his immediate future, but he is well on is way to overcoming some of life's toughest adversities.

  • Free/Reduced Lunch – 114
  • Below 150% of Poverty – 81
  • Above 150% of Poverty – 51
  1. Salvation Army of Greater Hickory – Shelter of Hope
  • 611 served

CCUW funding enabled us to provide a safe and clean shelter to the homeless community in Catawba County. Our shelter remains fully occupied most days, however there are always additional folks needing a place to stay. We do not keep a waiting list per se but encourage clients to arrive by 4 p.m. daily to see if space is available.

  • Free/Reduced Lunch – 26
  • Below 150% of Poverty – 585
  1. Salvation Army of Greater Hickory – Crisis Financial assistance
  • 2,759 served

One of our clients moved through our services, transitional housing and now is residing in permanent housing. Case management has created stability to the point where our services are no longer needed with three out of the 5 families going through the program. Long term case management is a challenge for clients who want short term results.

  1. Council on Adolescents – Healthy Youth Education
  • 5,486 served

We were able to provide vital puberty and reproductive health information to these youth to help them make educated, healthy decisions regarding their sexual health. One challenge we continue to face, which is the same challenge as last year, is with the amount of inaccurate, misinformation both parents and students are getting through social media and the internet. We continue to try and combat this and have increased our parent engagement, but unfortunately, we believe it will continue to be a problem for years to come.

  1. Council on Adolescents – Lunch Buddy Mentoring
  • 82 served

This program impacted and improved the lives of middle school youth across Catawba County by giving them a trusted, positive, adult mentor to meet with each school week. According to surveys completed by students, over 50% of participants had an improved relationship with their parent/guardians, improved attitude towards school, and now have goals for the future because of their participation in the Lunch Buddy Program.

  1. Patrick Beaver Learning Resource Center – Augustine Literacy Project
  • 49 served

Children must be at least a grade level below in reading to enter our program. Many are several grade levels below. Therefore, meeting grade-level benchmarks can be difficult for our students, even when they make more than expected growth. This year, 13 of our students met or exceeded at least one grade level literacy benchmark, and 5 are considered on grade level in reading now. Teachers praised ALP students’ progress: Tosha Youngdahl from Viewmont commented, “The student who was tutored made AMAZING gains this school year! So thankful he had this opportunity!” Jennifer Jones from Saint Stephens noted, “My Augustine Literacy Project student made huge gains this year. He started the year on a kindergarten reading level, and at the end of the year he was reading 2nd grade level texts.”

  • Free/Reduced Lunch – 49
  1. American Red Cross Blue Ridge Piedmont Chapter – Emergency/Disaster Services
  • 843 served

In 2023, we responded to 44 disasters in Catawba County, assisting 61 families made up of 154 individuals, and provided $40,257 in direct financial assistance. We also installed 208 lifesaving smoke alarms in the county, making 83 households and 212 people safer from home fires. Lastly, in 2023 we trained 213 adults and 264 students in preparedness through our free education courses.

  • Below 150% of Poverty – 42
  • Above 150% of Poverty – 26
  1. Adult Life Programs – Adult Day Care
  • 127 served

Our Adult Day services provide a safe, engaging place for socialization with others, community integration opportunities, stimulating activities, nutritious meals, and the involvement of a Health Care Coordinator who can monitor and address health conditions before they become debilitating. Creating opportunity for people to attend and participate in services designed to keep them connected to and involved in the community contributes to an overall heightened satisfaction with and quality of life, especially when those people are habitually marginalized and lack the same opportunities as their non-disabled, non-elderly contemporaries.

  • Free/Reduced Lunch – 108
  • Below 150% of Poverty – 108
  • Above 150% of Poverty – 23
  1. Partnership for Children – Parents as Teachers
  • 159 served

Parents, especially first-time parents or those who have significant risk factors, need the reassurance of having someone walk side by side with them, teaching them child safety - particularly out safe sleep practices - as well as child development, best feeding practices, and the importance of reading to and playing with their child. PAT educators also help families connect with critical support resources in the community, such as WIC, SNAP, childcare subsidy, counseling, support for locating employment and housing, and so many more. The impact of having a dedicated, trusted advisor and teacher cannot be overstated, and having that support can have a profound impact on the lives of the children who are being served.

  1. Family Guidance Center – First Step Domestic Violence Service
  • 728 served

Clients who are served through our programs often come to us at some of the darkest points in their lives. Our staff assesses their needs, develop a strategy, and work with the client to eliminate as many barriers as possible. The majority of our clients leave our programs feeling heard, believed, empowered, stronger, and most importantly safe. In 2023, Family Guidance Center's First Step Domestic Violence program provided shelter to 150 clients (71 women, 2 men, and 77 children). Of the 73 adults, 54 exited the shelter to safe, alternative placement while 10 exited the shelter and moved into their own housing! Family Guidance Center's staff has been diligent about increasing awareness of our services in our community.

  • Free/Reduced Lunch – 114
  • Below 150% of Poverty – 549
  • Above 150% of Poverty – 65
  1. Family Guidance Center – Sexual Assault Services
  • 130 served

Clients who are served through our programs often come to us at some of the darkest points in their lives. Our staff assesses their needs, develop a strategy, and work with the client to eliminate as many barriers as possible. Our goal with outreach is always to saturate and inform the community as much as we can so that community members are aware of the resources available. We plant the seed so that in the future if they or someone they know find themselves in need of services, they will know where to turn. Building and maintaining positive relationships will only further help our clients receive the best care whether it is legal, medical, or housing assistance.

  • Below 150% of Poverty – 87
  • Above 150% of Poverty – 43
  1. Greater Hickory CCM – Crisis assistance for rent/mortgage support
  • 29 served

CCUW funding allowed us to help 29 clients with a total of 76 household members stay housed in Catawba County. Of those clients served, 2 were experiencing homelessness, 3 were in immediate risk of becoming homeless, and 3 were disabled. of the households CCUW funding helped, 13 were able to pay deposits to get into permanent housing and 16 were able to make rent payments to prevent being evicted. The need for help is constant, and we try to maximize our funding to provide the most assistance that we can.

  • Below 150% of Poverty – 29
  1. Exodus Homes – Faith based supportive housing
  • 160 served

The CCUW impacts the families of each homeless recovering person who comes to Exodus Homes - children, spouses, etc. by helping their loved one learn a new way to live without drugs or alcohol. It impacts our local workforce development by providing clean workers with transportation who live in a stable environment. The taxes they pay and their disposable income from working help the local economy prosper.

  1. Exodus Homes – Medically Assisted Treatment
  • 13 served

This year we learned about a very effective MAT medication called Vivitrol which is administered in a shot once a month as opposed to daily use of suboxone. Although we still have MAT residents on suboxone, Vivitrol is a better option for several reasons. Vivitrol cannot be abused while there is always the risk that the suboxone pills can be crushed and snorted. Suboxone creates a security problem at Exodus Homes because it is so widely available on the streets. Suboxone itself is addictive and requires a long tapering off period to insure the person does not go through withdrawals from that which could lead a person back to opioids for relief. With Vivitrol, our full-time case manager can spend more time with the peer support and clinical supervision of an MAT resident's case plan than trying to account for every suboxone pill to make sure it is not being abused. 

  1. The Mental Health Fund – Catawba Valley Healthcare
  • 111 served

Successful outreach – Client was homeless and dealing with brain health, substance use and primary care issues. Our Peer Support Specialist worked closely with this client and arranged appointments with primary care and brain health. He arranged transportation for each appointment. The Peer assisted the client in getting food assistance and housing assistance. Our agency assisted in coverage of medications to promote good health. This client still works with our Peer Support Specialist and is housing and moving forward in improving his health.

  • Below 150% of Poverty – 101
  • Above 150% of Poverty – 10
  1. Catawba Co. DSS – Senior Nutrition Services
  • 1,155 served

Most of our surveyed clients (507 out of 512) report that participating in the senior nutrition program helped them remain in their homes, supported their physical and social-emotional health, and allowed them to maintain their independence. We’ve seen an increase in the demand for services: 9% increase in frozen meals; 13% increase in traditional meals on wheels and 56% increase in meals served at our Seniors Morning Out sites. With SNAP benefits returning to pre-Covid funding levels, there is an increase in the number of people needing weekend frozen meals in addition to their traditional MOW/SMO meals.

  • Below 150% of Poverty – 350
  • Above 150% of Poverty – 920
  1. Sipes Orchard Home – Transitional living program for teens
  • 41 served

The youth that come to us have been through a lot. Most are from upbringings that are abusive, neglectful and have moved around the child welfare systems a lot. Outcomes of youth aging out of care are poor, results are often homelessness, incarceration, addiction and poverty. Our goal is helping youth break these cycles and grow skills they need to be successful in young adulthood.

Five youth graduate high school last year. Twelve youth received drivers' licenses and 3 purchased cars. We are the only program with a transitional living program. that has a driving program. This is essential as transportation issues become a huge barrier if youth don't have a license prior to leaving our program.

  • Free/Reduced Lunch – 41
  • Below 150% of Poverty – 41