CONSTELLATIONS AWARD: AN HONOR

United Way of Greater New Haven was an honoree for the Constellations Award: an award given to an organization collaborating to increase impact and ensure sustainability.

Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce held a Nonprofit Stars Align breakfast on Thursday, November 16th, 2017  to honor nonprofits in the greater New Haven region that are making an impact on our region.

Awardees must have exhibited exceptional business or community leadership skills, noteworthy results, and be an active participant in business and/or community organizations.

United Way of Greater New Haven was an honoree for the Constellations Award: an award given to an organization collaborating to increase impact and ensure sustainability.

Below is Jennifer’s acceptance speech:

“I want to thank our friends at the Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce and our colleagues on the Chamber’s Nonprofit Resource Council for this special recognition. 

It’s special because in our work there are long days and at times we face seemingly intractable community problems. Problems like homelessness. At United Way, we feel a real sense of urgency around solving these tough issues, so our style is to roll up our sleeves, pull in the right partners to collaborate with on the work, and get busy! 

This award allows us to pause, and take a moment to celebrate the collaborative work we are doing in our community when it comes to ending homelessness.

As many of you in this room know, as of the end of last year, so December 2017, we had matched every chronically homeless person in our region with housing. That’s a big deal – and it could not have been done without working together. 

We’ve ended homelessness for people like Christina. Christina was chronically homeless and living out of her car in East Haven for more than a year. She was catching naps in her turquoise Chevy cavalier parked in a fast food chain’s parking lot in between her shifts at a nearby coffee shop. Now that she has a safe place to call home, Christina hopes to reconnect with her children.

We couldn’t have helped Christina or succeeded at any of this work without our dozens of community partners in the Coordinated Access Network. Thank you to everyone who is working so hard in this collaborative group every day.

We are committed to continuing this work, both to maintain our success with the chronically homeless population, and to expand our efforts, which will take more hard work, continued political support, and more funding. Our next goal is to end homelessness for families in our region. I ask you to consider how you can support United Way and our partners as we embark on this new audacious goal that will make our community a better place for all of us.

I want to leave you with one of my favorite quotes from Helen Keller, which I think captures the spirit of this award quite well:

‘Alone we can do so little. Together, we can do so much.’

I look forward to working with all of you and accomplishing many more great things in the years to come. 

Thank you.”

 

United Way of Greater New Haven is proud to continue to fight for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in our 12-town region.

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