Tocqueville Society Hosts ‘Maid’ Author Stephanie Land

by  | Nov 10, 2022 | Community Connection

Community Connection

Tocqueville Society Hosts ‘Maid’ Author Stephanie Land

On November 1, United Way of the Midlands hosted Stephanie Land, author of the New York Times best-seller “Maid,” at its fall Tocqueville Society reception. Land’s 2019 memoir explores poverty, surviving domestic violence and her experiences cleaning houses as a single mother. In 2021, the book was adapted into a Netflix miniseries of the same name.

The Tocqueville Society of United Way of the Midlands was established in 1987, and the charter group in 1988 included 12 members whose vision and belief in the community spurred others to join and give. Since its inception, the Society has notably raised over $117 million for our community. The November 1 event was one of the many ways UWM says “thank you” to the Society for their ongoing support and generosity…and the entire event was underwritten by this year’s amazing campaign sponsors: OPPD, Tenaska and Valmont.

OPPD logo
Tenaska Logo
Valmont logo

“We were excited to have Stephanie here to share her story and help us better understand how we can address the challenges she faced that are affecting families right here,” said United Way of the Midlands President and CEO Shawna Forsberg. “She has a very important story. One of an individual that’s a single mom, working and trying to leave a domestic violence situation. Unfortunately, in our Omaha-Council Bluffs metro, that’s not a unique story.”

Land advocates for those facing adversity related to the cycle of poverty, and many of our neighbors in this community are facing similar challenges. Currently, 7 out of 10 people living in poverty have at least one person that is working in their household. With the current economic factors that are challenging our community, more and more people are struggling. Families trying to make ends meet are experiencing more stress and strain as they confront the rising cost of essentials on limited budgets – often making no-win tradeoffs and sacrifices such as using less, substituting, borrowing and doing without.

To hear from individuals who attended Land’s presentation and the important role United Way plays in helping our community, please view the video below:

United Way of the Midlands is working together with many nonprofits and individuals to address the  challenges Land speaks about that are present in our community. With our partners, experts and community leaders – we look at the most difficult problems and are thoughtful about local solutions that work best to address them.

And we *are* seeing positive results. In our community over the last year, United Way and our partners:

  • Provided more than 214,000 behavioral and physical health services with 77% of clients achieving measurable improvements
  • Helped 5,000 families stay in their homes
  • Served 18,000 children through out-of-school-time, mentoring and other
  • supportive academic programs
    Distributed 6 million lbs. of food, including nearly 10 million meals
  • Provided 383,000 shelter nights, housing prevention services, and housing referrals
  • Provided employment, credit or budgeting services to nearly 18,000 people
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