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State Farm Gives a Hand Up to Families in Need

20 May 2020, 6:48 pm

State Farm’s motto of “Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there” has held true through hurricanes, pandemics and all of the days in between. And just like good neighbors, two local State Farm agencies have pulled together to support St. Lucie families in need in through their community partner, United Against Poverty (UAP). State Farm Insurance agents Bill Knight Jr., whose agency is located at 2301 Sunrise Boulevard, and Larry Lee Jr., whose agency is located at 4075 Virginia Avenue, recently joined forces to donate $1,000 towards United Against Poverty’s crisis stabilization program. On May 18, Knight and Lee...

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‘UP’ and partners ‘Give Together’ to pandemic’s hardest hit

19 May 2020, 1:38 pm

UP is recognized by Vero Beach News for it’s efforts to serve our neighbors-in-need during this pandemic. To read the full article click here.

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As this pandemic crisis continues to rapidly change, UP has been working to create ways to fill needs as they arise.

13 April 2020, 10:16 pm

Vero News recently reported on the work UP has done for the community during the COVID-19 crisis. Read the full article here: https://bit.ly/2xYb5we

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We are in this together…UNITED!

13 April 2020, 10:15 pm

Our hearts go out to all those affected by the Coronavirus. All of us at United Against Poverty would like to express our concern, love and support to those who have experienced illness or loss of a loved one due to COVID-19. Even though our everyday lives have changed significantly during these past few weeks, the human spirit has shown great resilience through remarkable acts of compassion towards others. We extend our deepest gratitude to all those who have united to serve the greater good during this unprecedented time. Thanks to the support of the community, United Against Poverty (UP) is...

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Thank You 2019 Hand UP Award Recipient – Pam Harmon

13 April 2020, 10:12 pm

Pam Harmon and husband Tim Muris have been committed supporters of our mission for more than a decade. A dedicated volunteer, Pam has served eight years on the Board of Directors and has been instrumental in leading efforts associated with the annual Valentine Ball fundraiser. “A brilliant financial mind, Pam has brought strong leadership, great wisdom and valued insight,” said Annabel Robertson, Executive Director. “She has impacted the organization in immeasurable ways and has changed thousands of lives.”

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STEP Success Story

13 April 2020, 10:10 pm

When Taylor enrolled in UP’s Success Training Employment Program (STEP) in 2015, he knew he wanted more from life than a dead end job and a lifetime of poverty, and his determination to have a better live was obvious to everyone who met him. Taylor was taking two buses and walking another mile to get to class, and was there on time with a smile of his face every morning. Taylor’s hard work did not go unnoticed, and UP was able to utilize our community partners to help Taylor get back in school and obtain his GED. He won an...

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Volunteer Spotlight: Alice

13 April 2020, 10:09 pm

United Against Poverty’s volunteers are the backbone of our operation, We call on them when we need support and they always deliver. Our volunteers help with administrative work, stocking shelves, helping our members find the resources they need, teaching classes, working events, and various other tasks around campus. There are many dedicated volunteers here at UP and we would not be able to do the great work we do without them. We are especially thankful for Alice, who has been a volunteer for UP for many years. Alice is essential to the Development Department and is conserved an essential part...

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Highlighted Partner: Indian River Community Foundation

13 April 2020, 10:07 pm

UP welcomed the staff of Indian River Community Foundation (IRCF) on March 5th. An update on UP’s projects and programs was provided as well as a tour of the New UP Center. IRCF has been very supportive of UP’s work in Indian River County, including grants for our Success Training Employment Program (STEP) and a capital grant to support the Health Clinic in the New UP Center. IRCF is a vibrant, nonprofit enterprise with a powerfully simple mission of building a better community through donor-driven philanthropy. IRCF was established in 2008 and is accredited as meeting National Standards for U.S....

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Featured Foundation: Syde Hurdus

13 April 2020, 10:03 pm

Syde Hurdus Foundation, based in New York City, is an independent foundation focused on supporting social and human services as well as health organizations. United Against Poverty of Indian River County received a $50,000 grant in February 2020 from the Foundation to support their mission. Syde Hurdus Foundation’s President Herb Fitz Gibbon II commented “We think UP’s strategic vision and their implementation of it is as good as we have seen.” UP is grateful for Syde Hurdus Foundation’s generous support!

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The New UP Center Has Opened!

13 April 2020, 9:59 pm

The New UP Center pays homage to the building’s roots by leaning into the industrial design with sleek concrete floors and spacious, exposed ceilings. The center is filled with art and encouraging words of affirmation, but what is even more impressive than the fresh façade is all of the extensive resources that the center provides. The expansive location accommodates a co-op Member Share Grocery Program, classrooms for workplace readiness development, a health clinic run by Treasure Coast Community Health, and a marketplace. Annabel Robertson, UP’s Executive Director, commented, “The opening of the New UP Center is the result of many...

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Volunteer Spotlight: Fraternity Spreads Brotherly Love

13 April 2020, 9:48 pm

Many think fraternities and sororities are only for college-aged youth…but these relationships extend far beyond graduation. We are so thankful to the Delta Lambda Sigma Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.(aka the “Treasure Coast Signmas”) for their ongoing commitment to bettering the community. Each year the Sigmas select projects that focus on serving humanity, and UP has been fortunate to receive both gifts of financial support and service from the brothers. Over the holiday season, the group bagged 100 turkeys and sides—allowing our program participants to enjoy a dignified and traditional holiday meal in their own home. Way to...

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Welcome 2020 Board Member Geoff Moore

13 April 2020, 9:48 pm

“I smile when I talk about United Against Poverty because I’ve seen what they can do, and it is truly amazing. I’ve witnessed lives change for the better. I’ve seen people become empowered to live their best life— both for themselves AND for their families. This organization helps our community in more ways than most realize. For those who have been stuck in a vicious cycle, it helps them energize, revitalize, visualize, equalize and harmonize those that need it most. UP’s programs affect the entire family—they help make men and women proud again and give children someone to look up...

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STEP Success Story

13 April 2020, 9:44 pm

As a single parent of a troubled teen, Arvin came to UP looking for a job and motivation. His prior criminal record made life that much more difficult. Determined to overcome these obstacles, Arvin enrolled in the Success Training Employment Program (STEP) and worked diligently on the curriculum— taking in all that was offered by his Success Coaches. Upon graduation, he put his newfound interview skills to the test as he was considered for an open position at our UP Center…and he got the job! Arvin is proud to be our new onsite sanitation worker. When asked what this experience...

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Community Ties

13 April 2020, 9:42 pm

Coretta Scott King, author, activist and wife to Martin Luther King Jr., believed that “the greatness of a community is most accurately measured by the compassionate actions of its members.” There is so much greatness happening right here in St. Lucie County! All of us at United Against Poverty are fortunate enough to experience it every day in ways big and small, ordinary and obscure. Below are just a few highlights from the past few months. UP St. Lucie was thrilled to help celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on January 18th. Staff, board members...

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We are in this together…UNITED!

13 April 2020, 9:28 pm

Our hearts go out to all those affected by the Coronavirus. All of us at United Against Poverty would like to express our concern, love and supportto those who have experienced illness or loss of a loved one due to COVID-19. Even though our everyday lives have changed significantly during these past few weeks, the human spirit has shown great resilience through remarkable acts of compassion towards others. We extend our deepest gratitude to all those who have united to serve the greater good during this unprecedented time. Thanks to the support of the community, United Against Poverty (UP) is...

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2020 Board Member Spotlight – Susan Makowski

13 April 2020, 5:42 pm

Susan Makowski, Owner and President of Community Consultants Orlando, is a member of the United Against Poverty Orlando Advisory Board and Chair of the Advocacy Committee. Susan holds a Master of Business Administration and has more than 25 years of experience in both the private and public sector, and is adept at navigating through the red tape of local government. She is using that experience to spearhead the advocacy efforts of UP Orlando, and we are very excited by her work in helping us move the needle on poverty!

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STEP Success Story – Sunita

13 April 2020, 5:41 pm

“Through the Success Training Employment Program, I have gained much more confidence than I started with. I learned a great deal about emotional intelligence and how to manage myself, my emotions, and my relationships with others. The daily themed morning motivations have been helpful in boosting my self-confidence. Through the discussions, I learned skills that I could apply in personal life situations, as well as in professional/work settings. I refreshed my computer skills. I revamped my resume. I gained valuable practice, interviewing with actual employers. The Retail Learning Institute trainings equipped me with workplace skills I never had before. I...

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Congrats Graduates!

13 April 2020, 5:36 pm

The Success Training Employment Program (STEP) cohort 25 graduated on March 6, 2020. These 15 adult learners mark a significant milestone for UP Orlando as we celebrate 4 years of STEP. These last 4 years, we have shared in the journey with 239 graduates. We are grateful for cohort 25 for sharing their stories, hopes, and goals with us and we look forward to walking alongside them and celebrating as they reach success.

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Community Ties

13 April 2020, 5:32 pm

Coretta Scott King, author, activist and wife to Martin Luther King Jr., believed that “the greatness of a community is most accurately measured by the compassionate actions of its members.” There is so much greatness happening right here in Central Florida! All of us at United Against Poverty are fortunate enough to experience it every day in ways big and small, ordinary and obscure. Below are just a few highlights from the past two weeks. Westgate Resorts and Westgate Resorts Foundation, how do we love thee? Let us count the ways. Ten gallons of milk, eight boxes of muffns, thirty...

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We are in this together…UNITED!

13 April 2020, 5:18 pm

Our hearts go out to all those affected by the Coronavirus. All of us at United Against Poverty would like to express our concern, love and support to those who have experienced illness or loss of a loved one due to COVID-19. Even though our everyday lives have changed significantly during these past few weeks, the human spirit has shown great resilience through remarkable acts of compassion towards others. We extend our deepest gratitude to all those who have united to serve the greater good during this unprecedented time. Thanks to the support of the community, United Against Poverty (UP)...

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Introducing Our New CEO

2 April 2020, 6:46 pm

United Against Poverty is thrilled to announce the appointment of our new CEO, Gwendolyn D. Butson. Gwen comes to us with 15 years of non-profit experience. She has worked with The Salvation Army and Goodwill Industries in key executive positions and has a love for helping people. She has extensive executive management experience and holds a Masters in Business Administration. Gwen’s demonstrated compassion is accompanied by her keen interest in the areas of strategy, accountability and succession planning, the hallmarks of an effective CEO. Her passion for the non-profit industry is evident in her dedication to the employees, the participants,...

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Introducing Our New CEO

2 April 2020, 6:27 pm

United Against Poverty is thrilled to announce the appointment of our new CEO, Gwendolyn D. Butson. Gwen comes to us with 15 years of non-profit experience. She has worked with The Salvation Army and Goodwill Industries in key executive positions and has a love for helping people. She has extensive executive management experience and holds a Masters in Business Administration. Gwen’s demonstrated compassion is accompanied by her keen interest in the areas of strategy, accountability and succession planning, the hallmarks of an effective CEO. Her passion for the non-profit industry is evident in her dedication to the employees, the participants,...

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Introducing Our New CEO

2 April 2020, 12:41 pm

United Against Poverty is thrilled to announce the appointment of our new CEO, Gwendolyn D. Butson. Gwen comes to us with 15 years of non-profit experience. She has worked with The Salvation Army and Goodwill Industries in key executive positions and has a love for helping people. She has extensive executive management experience and holds a Masters in Business Administration. Gwen’s demonstrated compassion is accompanied by her keen interest in the areas of strategy, accountability and succession planning, the hallmarks of an effective CEO. Her passion for the non-profit industry is evident in her dedication to the employees, the participants,...

The post Introducing Our New CEO appeared first on United Against Poverty Indian River County.

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Inaugural BBQ, Blues and Bike Fest

24 February 2020, 4:16 pm

On Monday, May 25, 2020, United Against Poverty of St. Lucie County will host a one-of-a-kind charity festival, the BBQ, Blues and Bike Fest to celebrate Memorial Day at Veterans Memorial Park in Fort Pierce. This unique celebration will serve both to unite the community around food, music, and motorcycles, while benefitting much needed services that help give hard working families a hand up out of poverty and to economic self-sufficiency. We would love to have you join us and be a voice for the 56,924 households in St. Lucie County that struggle to make ends meet. All funds raised...

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No Foolin’ Fool’s Day 5K Returns

21 February 2020, 4:12 pm

United Against Poverty of St. Lucie County will be hosting its Second Annual Fool’s Day 5k run/walk on Saturday, March 28 at 8 a.m. at South Causeway Park in Fort Pierce. Community members are invited to lace up their sneakers and “Be a Blessing in Disguise” for the 56,924 or 51% of households in St. Lucie County that struggle to meet their basic needs. Participants of all ages and abilities can run, jog, stroll or roll through an exciting 3.1 mile course filled with silly string, bubbles, squirt guns and other fun surprises. Registration includes a commemorative t-shirt, pair of...

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First class of 2020

13 January 2020, 4:21 pm

January 13, 2020 marked the first day of the Success Training Employment Program (STEP) for 20 eager adults at the United Against Poverty St. Lucie campus. STEP is an adult workforce training program where students are taught emotional intelligence, resume writing, job interview preparation, and development of a career plan in the six week course. United Against Poverty then provides help with job acquisition and success coaching for 3 years after employment. According to Canieria Gardner, Executive Director, “In 2019, 93% of individuals who completed the training are employed. Since its inception in 2018, the job retention rate is 86%...

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Volunteer Spotlight: Life 2019 Conference

25 July 2019, 3:21 pm

This year, thousands of high school students poured in from all over the country to attend the week-long LIFE 2019 Conference, held by the Christian and Missionary Alliance. Included in the experience is the opportunity for large groups to volunteer at various nonprofit organizations throughout Central Florida. UP Orlando was lucky enough to be one of those service project sites! From July 10-July 13, a different team of 75 amazing high school students showed up everyday ready to work. That means a total of 300 volunteers served at our campus! Volunteers worked hard in our Member Share Grocery Program and...

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Meet Brenda!

25 July 2019, 3:12 pm

Brenda, STEP Class 12 graduate, has been living in Orlando most of her life. Her passions include writing and psychology. She is very intrigued by psychology, because she loves to study people and rationalize why people are the way they are. STEP has taught her interpersonal skills and emotional intelligence, and she feels more confident than ever! After STEP, Brenda wishes to find a permanent job where she will be happy.

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Highlighted Partner: Stanley Steemer

25 July 2019, 3:10 pm

With STEP students, volunteers, donors, partners members, and staff walking through our building everyday, our carpets take a lot of abuse. This is why we’re so grateful for our newest corporate partner Stanley Steemer! Last week, Stanley Steemer, owned and operated by Mark and Connie Gellner in Apopka, cleaned the carpet in our 2,0000 sq. ft. STEP Classroom free of charge. The carpet looks brand new just in time for STEP graduation on August 1 and a new STEP class starting later in the month. Thank you, Stanley Steemer!

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Meet Our New Board Chairman

24 July 2019, 7:26 pm

by Kyanna Johnson, Executive Intern, UCF College of Undergraduate Studies As the CEO of Adept Leadership, Paul DePalma continues to show his impressive leadership skills as the Chairman of the Board of Directors at UP Orlando. Previously serving as the Chairman of the Organizational Leadership Committee, DePalma has remained committed to our cause since 2015. Having trained numerous companies and organizations about restructuring and re-developing leadership skills, DePalma has made his mark in the Orlando community. Wanting to get involved in his community, DePalma began volunteering with UP after visiting the campus with Eric Gray, Executive Director who describes DePalma...

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