United Community Ministries (UCM) is a perfect example of a nonprofit which is solely focused on the community. Instead of specializing in one specific field, UCM has a multitude of programs ranging from a focus in youth & childhood education to aiding community members in times of crisis. UCM continually helps families, children, and individuals break the cycle of poverty and make communities stronger.
United Community Ministries (UCM) is an extraordinary agency that provides exemplary programs and services for indigent children, youth, adults, and families in a comprehensive and holistic fashion. For more than four decades, UCM's programs have empowered, uplifted, and inspired vulnerable residents in the mount Vernon Community.
I have four years experience on the UCM Board and thus a unique opportunity to observe the staff, their effort and the results. UCM is a truly essential to the well being of over 6000 needy residents in this area of Fairfax County. Whether it's the family in need of food or shelter or freedom from domestic abuse UCM is the answer to the desperate. For the newly arrived in the US UCM provides language training , job training and placement to allow the individual to begin to contribute to their new homeland. UCM is deserving of support.
UCM is a vitally important organization in our community. The thousands of people helped each year are striving to better themselves and thus, the whole community. The number of clients that UCM serves is growing daily.. I can't imagine what all of the clients would do without the help from UCM.
Just today, i wrote out the contact info of UCM for a family looking for handouts at Walmart. UCM is priceless to the South Alexandria, Mount Vernon area. I truly don't know how so many individuals and families would survive without UCM's steady support to our Community!
I have volunteered with UCM. I find it to be an excellent resource for those in need in our community. The wide range of services (food pantry, early childhood education, workforce training, etc) is a great safety net for our community. Services are provided with a great amount of compasion and caring. Contributions are managed well and spent to help those in need with a small administration cost.
I participated in UCM's homeless walk, holiday room and food pantry. This is a caring well-run organization that helps our local familes in need. UCM is helping with food, utilities, job training, child care and so much more. The parents who come to the holiday room were so grateful for the help so that they could give to their children. They also received holiday food. It was a meaningful experience for me and UCM helps people daily with their needs and helps people to help themselves through job skills! It is an organization you would be proud to be a part of!
In my experience, UCM is an exceptional volunteer supported organization that goes above and beyond what is required to accommodate a myriad of volunteers who are in need of mandatory community service. From court-mandated volunteers to high school students in need of service hours, UCM invariable finds a volunteer opportunity for almost 100% of those who contact them. The winner of the a 2012 Fairfax County Volunteer Service Award for having a volunteer program that is well-run and fully integrated within the organization, UCM normally seeks community service opportunities that will both contribute to the organization as well as it being meaningful for the volunteer.
My family and I have supported UCM for more than 30 years. With the floundering economy, more and more people are losing jobs, losing their homes and are worried about the future of their children. UCM, with their caring staff, is there to help. I am extremely impressed with UCM's Bryant Early Learning Center. Education is provided, at a minimum cost, to children birth to 5 years of age so that parents can work or continue their education and to provide for their family. The Learning Center, which is located in a public high school, partners with Fairfax County to provide child care so that teen parents can earn their high school diploma. Without this program, many teen parents would have to drop out of school making their future very uncertain. UCM is dedicated to helping all those who need help and continues to find ways to serve the growing population of those less fortunate.
I have been involved with UCM in some capacity for over 20 years. And I am still proud and amazed at the wonderful success stories on the families that have sought assistance at this organization. Many years ago, when a company that I worked for defaulted on their contract, I was able to receive assistance from UCM. Now I am pleased to be a donor and employee of this agency. Marvelous things happen at UCM because of the efforts of the donors, staff, volunteers and the community. It is a great place doing a great and needed work.
I have been involved with UCM since 1998 in many ways, and continue to be impressed by their scope of services and compassion for the community they serve. My daughter attended the Bryant Early Learning Center for 2 years of her early life and it was an awesome experience for her and me.
My family has been involved with UCM for nearly 13 years now, as donors, volunteers and utilizing their quality child care program. Their scope of services is remarkable for a locally based charitable organization from providing food and basic necessities, assisting with housing and employment skills to child care and youth empowerment programs, not to mention my favorite thrift store, The Back Porch! The dedication and compassion of the employees is unsurpassed.
I started working with UCM about a year ago because I was looking for part time work. I've lived in the Route One community for over 20 years, so I was familiar with UCM and its mission, but I had no idea of the scope of services that they offer to my community. They truly seek to help the needy in every facet to weather a short term crisis and become self sustaining for the rest of their lives. I am proud to be an employee of such a great organization.
UCM's service to the community is long standing and far reaching. Its wide array of programs which each address critical needs help build stronger individuals, families and ultimately, communities. I have always been particularly impressed with the work UCM does to support children - the Bryant Early Learning Center prepares children to enter kindergarten ready to succeed; Healthy Families programs are effective in promoting positive parenting and reducing child abuse; and UCM's Community Centers at Sacramento and Creekside Village provide safe places for youth during out of school hours where they can participate in tutoring and leadership development activities. UCM is a tremendous asset to the community - as a social work professional, they have my wholehearted support.
UCM is a great community resource for Northern Virginia. My wife and I have been involved with UCM in various capacities over the past decade and we remain as donors and occasional volunteers to support the dedicated staff.Myspecial interest has been in the food pantry, which provides basic nutrition for more than 12,000 persons each year (maybe more in the recent economic downturn). Most of the food pantry services support local families who have a wage-earner but not enough income to cover even their basic needs in this high cost of living area. But the food pantry also offers special help to shut in elderly persons and others with special needs.My wife has been especially involved with the Bryant Early Learning Center.She is a retired educator - teacher, principal and school system admionistrator - and she is enthusiastic about the child development services (not just day care) provided by Bryant. It truly gives children from lower income families a head start into the educational world.
I became involved with UCM through my wife. She was a public school administrator and found that UCM's child development program enabled some 15 to 20 young low income women annually to complete their high school education while being confident that their infants and young children werepppcared for professionally and protectively. I subsequently became a volunteer in the food pantry which provides subsistence and nourishment to more than 10,000 persons every year. And from there I became a board member and officer. I have seen women who were victims of domestic violence remake their lives ( and their children's) through UCM's programs. I have seen parents leave in tearful gratitude because UCM provided the clothes and toys they needed ot give their children a good Christmas. And I have seen clients with poor working skills and little or no employment history gain basic skills through UCM's programs that enabled them to be employed and move towards self-sufficiency. UCM's contributions to the health and welfare of our neighbors and our community is beyond any valuing.
UCM is an outstanding organization that provides a vital service to those in need in the Mt. Vernon\/South County area of Fairfax County. We are lucky to have them I am pleased to support the good work that they do.
I admire UCM greatly for the services that it provides to so many and for the way it treats its clients with dignity. UCM is a lifesaver and life changer for so many people. I am proud to be associated with it and to tell its story.
UCM has provided much needed services for a very diverse population for over forty years. It is difficult to comprehend were the needy families and children would be without the emergency services provided by this trusted agency. The longevity of the helpful staff speaks to the compassion and selflessness this organization employs both within and to the community. Thank you UCM for all that you have done and continue to do. Felicea
I am so proud to be a part of the UCM Board. The more I understandt the role of this organization in the Route 1 Corridor, the more I realize what a different--and much less livable--community we would be without the safety net provided by UCM. Despite my ever-growing knowledge of UCM, I still do not understand how they do so much with so little. Truly, money donated to UCM goes directly to the purpose for which it is given. Mary E. Mehler
UCM is a rare, lean organization with a lot of heart. The work that it is involved in reaches to the very core of need in the community. I am proud to be able to work with the fundraising group of the organization and to offer students a direction to reach out for meaningful community service such as stocking the food room or the holiday gift room. Community friends can engage in fundraising, from small, social affairs to larger food drives and know that their efforts are impactful and appreciated. I don't know of a' grassroots'organization that works harder or effects those in need more directly in my community!
While my association with UCM goes back only 15 years, this fantastic charity has been helping families and children for over forty years! It is heartening to know that the children of unwed teenage mothers are getting a head start in our BEL (Bryant Early Learning) Center while their mothers gain life changing skills. And it is uplifting that we are able to distribute over a ton of food every day we are open to families along the Route One corridor. And it is fantastic to see individuals complete our training programs, allowing them to get meaningful employment to help ensure they are on the way to breaking the cycle of poverty that surrounded them. That is UCM as I know it!
I am a donor and am employee, and I am proud to be a part of this wonderful organization. I often tell people that, the longer I am with UCM, the more amazed I become at the many ways in which people's lives are changed every day because of UCM. The organization has programs, such as its housing programs, that absolutely transform lives! People go from homeless shelters and situations of domestic violence to housed, in jobs, and living independently for the first time in their lives. And that's just one example!
UCM does great work in the community--particularly for children youth and families. The Bryant Early Learning Center provides a phenomenal start for children to become life-long learners. The community centers help children gain access to tutoring, after-school and summer programming and summer lunch programs. UCM does so much to strengthen the community.
I have been a UCM donor for the last year because I believe that the work that they do is powerfully important. I learned about UCM through idealist.org and their website, but to truly understand the scope of what they do, you really have to talk to the people who are served and the people who work there.
This is a wonderful community based charity in the Mount Vernon Lee districts of Fairfax County, Virginia. Last week I brought over some of our older youth from St. Luke's to help unload food donated from the area churches like Good Shepherd Catholic Church and St. Luke's Episcopal Church. Amazing support from the churches and pretty soon the food pantry was full! It was great to work with the UCM staff and to learn how the food is helping those in desperate need in our community. God Bless UCM and the people they serve.
As a member of Alexandria Woodlawn Friends Meeting I have and feel a close link to UCM. We have permanent collections of food and $$ for UCM and I am always impressed with how they make such effective use of the contributions they receive.
In 2010 I was lay-off from my job, being the head of the house with two children I was afraid I would lose everything. I when to UCM and apply for the different services they offered, such as food, Dominion Power, and emergency money.
these services helped me stay a float till my unemployment started. My family will never forget the kindness showed during our time of need.
I have had patients who needed help with basic necessities for children or themselves and UCM is always there as a referral. They may have come in to me with their broken bone but medical help was not all what they needed. UCM is always there to help with the 'realiites' of daily living. Thank you for all your help in the community!
As a social worker with a private agency I was always limited in the types of assistance I could provide clients. But, thankfully, I could refer people to UCM with the assurance that their needs would be addressed wisely and knowledgably. Over many years I have seen this agency grow into a better and better organization, with services that really address the needs of an increasingly needy and growing community. UCM has my total respect.
We regularly donate money, food and items for sale in the thrift store. As a former Board member and Officer, I have seen the dedication of the staff and volunteers in providing multifaceted programs for the families served.
I have been helping with UCM programs for years. UCM is the largest and most vital social service agency in the eastern part of Fairfax county. UCM's support for families, the under employed, and those with needs large and small is unmatched by other agencies up and down the Rt. 1 corridor.
I have been donating money and goods to UCM for years because of the work it does to help feed needy people and help them become self sufficient. This need increased greatly after 9/11 when many local, low-wages were laid off, but UCM stepped up to meet the need. I vowed I would become more active when I retired from government, and now I am on the board. As a board member I have come to appreciate UCM even more because of the wide range of programs it offers to people in crisis and need.
I have been associated with UCM for over 30 years. It is an outstanding organization that has created a sense of community in an area that is extremely diverse. The work done by UCM truly changes people's lives. It is not a band aid. The staff and volunteers are dedicated. well trained and compassionate. You cannot make a better investment.
UCM is such a wonderful addtiion to our community. During this season, it's especially nice to think back on its years of service and the many, many persons who have been helped during its history.
We donate to UCM both personally (financially and through food donations) and through our church. Every year we use our annual holiday party to get food donations for UCM -- last year alone with the help of friends and family attending our party, we were able to donate over 300 pounds of food. We do so because we believe in the good work that UCM does to serve families in need along the Route 1 corridor in Alexandria.
UCM is my favority charity to donate to in my community. They are always there and offer a range of services. I know they are steady and make the most of the donations.
I have volunteered at the UCM with my son. Volunteering at UCM is not only an opportunity to help our community, but to get to know the people in the community. I think that makes it an extra special experience for my son.
I am a volunteer and donor. Because of United Communities our community is a better place. Not only do they provide food and shelter for many in need, they provide counsel on how to better their condition.
I am privileged to be both a donor and staff leader with United Community Ministries. The depth and breadth of services in the community provide not only basic human needs, but build the skills necessary to successful lives. For more than 40 years, UCM has been not only the community's safety net, but essential in providing hope and solutions to thousands of families each and every year.
I have been aware of UCM services to less fortunate neighbors in the Route 1 Corridor of Fairfax County for many years. Several years ago I decided to become more involved as a volunteer and as a board member.
My wife and I have been involved with UCM for over fifteen years. She has been a volunteer helping clients with basic needs for all that time and was a board member in the late 1990s. I have helped with food and clothing drives for as many years and was honored to join the board this past year. This is a marvelous full service organization, helping with everything from basic needs to child care to training to get people back into the work force with meaningful jobs. But the task continues to grow, with one in five children now living in poverty. At a time when former donors are now clients, we need all the help we can to care for our fellow friends and neighbors.
I am recent addition to UCM's Board of Directors. But in my 25 years of development banking, rarely did I see an institution that is both so strategically focused on its mission of helping people in need, and so efficient and transaparent in delivering its services. Whatever you do for UCM, you know it will immediately translate into concrete assistance for a client family. Whether you volunteer in, donate to, or attend UCM's activities, your effort has a direct, positive impact on someone's life. Those unique institutional qualities are showing in the superb way UCM has reacted to the current economic down-turn. It is assisting a record number of clients—some 13,000 of them. Its emergency food, shelter and utility connection programs are operating at maximum capacity. Educational and self-help initiatives are fully, and sometimes over, subscribed. More than ever before, federal, state and county governments count on UCM's help to reach the most vulnerable. Its staff are generously giving up their personal time and its volunteer force is deployed in its entirety. While we are proud of UCM’s many achievements in this special period, continue to learn from our experience, and constantly seek new opportunities to enhance our efficiency and effectiveness, we know that there are many families still hurting. Fairfax County reports that some two thousand people remain homeless in the area, forty percent of which are children. And the consensus forecast is for the economy’s recovery to be slow, protracted and mostly jobless. In other words, for the poor, the next two to three years will not be much different from today. So, if you ever wanted to extend a hand to the hungry, the homeless and the hopeless among us, this is the time to do it. And UCM is a wonderful vehicle to channel your support.
I have donated to and volunteered for UCM over many years. I keep coming back to UCM because all of the efforts stay right in our community. I feel like their clients receive my donations rather than the money being spent on sending me address labels, cards and the like. I believe something like 94 cents of every dollar contributed goes directly to those who need it. Volunteering has also made me realize that there is true need right in my neighborhood and UCM does all that it can to meet those needs.