Urgent Call to Donors to Help End Childhood Poverty

(Stark and Carroll Counties) Sept. 9, 2021 — United Way of Greater Stark County launched today its annual fundraising campaign with a renewed commitment to tackle the growing crisis of childhood poverty in Stark and Carroll Counties.

“Right now, about 20,000 children in Stark County live in poverty,” said Dave Grabowsky, President of Standard Plumbing and Heating Co. and United Way’s 2021 Campaign Co-Chair. “It’s an issue that permeates nearly every neighborhood of our community. These children and their families can’t wait. They need our help today — and the future of our community depends on it.” 

United Way of Greater Stark County and the Stark Community Foundation in partnership with The Center for Community Solutions released a report called Protecting Stark’s Future. The report revealed alarming data showing the extent of the child poverty crisis in our community and calling for greater collaboration to address it.

Key findings from the report show that 56.9% of children in Canton live in poverty, Canton is tied for second-place with Youngstown for the second-highest child poverty rate in the U.S. with a total population greater than 65,000, and less than 4 miles means a difference of 16.2 years in life expectancy between a neighborhood on the east side of Canton and one near the center of North Canton. 

With the launch of its annual fundraising campaign, United Way of Greater Stark County aims to raise $5.92M by Dec. 9 to support programs that work to reduce child poverty by addressing the immediate needs of children and their families, while also increasing household earnings.

“The poverty report released earlier this year raised the alarm, and now is the time to act,” said United Way of Greater Stark County President and CEO Maria Heege. “We’re asking the entire community to join us because these children need us to do more. They need you. Together, a brighter future for our community is within our reach.”

If you were not able to join live this morning, the panel discussion is available here

Make a donation to the annual campaign online here or text WITHINREACH to 41444.

About United Way of Greater Stark County

For nearly 100 years, United Way of Greater Stark County has served Stark and Carroll Counties. During that time, we have continued to build a better, equitable community where every person has the potential for a healthier life, a better education and more financial stability. We look to the future through our investment priorities, which ensure our community will have the foundation it needs to thrive: Access to Health, Childhood Success, Youth Success, Economic Mobility and Basic Housing Needs. With the support of volunteers, community partners and donors, we invest donor dollars efficiently and effectively into local community programs serving the most critical needs. Learn more at uwstark.org.