Women United Newsletter

Women United Newsletter

Women United is a global, growing force dedicated to creating lasting change and uplifting the community. This biannual newsletter is an opportunity to provide meaningful updates across our Women United network.
Mental Health First Aid Initiative Update

Women United has prioritized mental health to help address the increased demand for services and access challenges across the metro. Mental health impacts each of us, our families and our community.

In partnership with Region 6 Behavioral Healthcare, the initiative is increasing access to and awareness of Mental Health First Aid training by funding an awareness campaign and providing an additional Coordinator and trainers at Region 6. In partnership with OBI Creative, the awareness campaign seeks to increase the community’s knowledge of the MHFA training and remove the stigma of coming forward with a mental health need.

Learn more about the initiative.  

Mental Health Spotlight
video: The Caring Spirit of Women United and the Tocqueville women's initiative
2022-23 Fiscal Year Goals and Updates
Your dollars will do the most good, locally.

We are beyond grateful to see the incredible participation supporting this critical work. The first year of the initiative was a great success, overperforming on fundraising and training goals.

  • The Tocqueville Women’s Initiative Advisory (TWIA) Council set a goal to raise $600,000 in the next three years, with a yearly goal of $200,000. 
    We are honored by our community’s caring spirit to support this vital work and help us raise $375,954.39 in the first year!
  • The next largest goal established was to facilitate 30 Mental Health First Aid trainings and engage 600 participants in the first 12 months.
    •  In the first 16 months alone 105 trainings were held, and they engaged more than 1,405 participants across the community.

Volunteer reviewers from across the metro area decide what programs we need to thrive – with more than 1,500 hours spent by these local experts and active community volunteers reviewing program design, impact, financial data and more.

This due diligence means that the community endorses programs receiving UWM support. Organizations tell us that when they receive a grant from United Way, they feel empowered and supported by the entire community. An investment from UWM is a sign of faith and approval – often used by nonprofits to secure even more support.

As members of Women United, you are part of this critical work. Your support allows the United Way of the Midlands to create system-wide change. And your leadership inspires others to get involved and make a difference. In addition, your ongoing generosity will help ensure that people throughout the community receive the proper mental health care at the right time.

Steering committee

Women United celebrates the power of women to bring about positive change in our community through philanthropy and service. Led by passionate leaders across the metro, the Women United Steering Committee champions this vital work to serve and strengthen the community. Below is a list of our Steering Committee members:

“Every one of us has mental health and the more we know and talk about the factors that cause strain or enhance our mental well-being, the stronger we will be for ourselves and others, and within our community. Participating in the MHFA training provided me greater understanding and tactics to spot potential signs of a struggle. I feel empowered to ask simple questions to invite others in conversation and share resources to direct them, should they be open.”
Angela Rock

Angela Rock, a member of the Women United Steering Committee, is one of the community members that took part in MHFA training. Her team at FNBO has also engaged 107 employees by offering MHFA trainings and overview sessions.

If you are interested in learning more about the Steering Committee and how to join, please contact Maureen Irish, Director of Strategic Relationships at womenunited@uwmidlands.org

Breakfast with champions

Hosting the Breakfast with Champions on Wednesday, May 24, was a joy at the Omaha Country Club. This event allowed members of the Tocqueville Women’s Initiative to come together and celebrate women in philanthropy, and we had the honor to have Barbara Siemer as our keynote speaker for the event. Barbara and her husband, Al, are two of the leading philanthropists in the country. For the past decade, United Way of the Midlands has partnered with Barbara and Al and the Siemer Institute to improve outcomes for local families facing the imminent risk of homelessness in the Omaha-Council Bluffs metro.

At the event, we also immensely enjoyed recognizing Karen Hawkins. Karen was Chair of our Tocqueville Women’s Initiative Advisory Council for nine years (2014-2023), recently transitioning to Advisor in February. Karen is a founding member of the Women’s Leadership Council, now Women United, and she has played a vital and profound role in championing our meaningful initiatives and transforming lives across our community.

To view photos from the Breakfast with Champions event, click: TWIA Breakfast of Champions Gallery – United Way of the Midlands (unitedwaymidlands.org)

Women United Events Highlights

The Mary C. Lopez Lunch & Learn was held on World Mental Health Awareness Day, Tuesday, October 10. The luncheon provided a thoughtful and in-depth look at many of today’s youth’s challenges. This event was sponsored by the University of Nebraska-Omaha Chancellor’s Office. We had the honor to engage a panel of community experts across various fields to lend their unique insights and perspectives on this critical topic. We want to give a special thank you to Cathy Pettid, Associate Vice Chancellor and Dean of Students at the University of Nebraska – Omaha; Becca Bradley, Regional Manager for Jobs for America’s Graduates – Nebraska; Carla Rizzo, Chief Executive Officer at Completely Kids; and Melissa Valek, Senior Development Director with College Possible. Guests had the opportunity to recognize World Mental Health Awareness Day by packing 144 wellness kits for Completely Kids.

Learn more

Please visit here to learn more about Women United, and don’t forget to connect with us on social media!

A Transparent Investment in Our Future

By entrusting our community to make impactful decisions, the Community Care Fund ensures program funding aligns with the needs and priorities we see right here in the Omaha-Council Bluffs metro. It's a direct and transparent way to make a difference... for our community, by our community.