United Way of Southern Nevada celebrates achievements

A high school graduation rate of 100 percent.

That is one of several goals United Way of Southern Nevada wants to see become reality in the Silver State.

“The community needs to work together,” said Cass Palmer, president and chief executive officer of United Way of Southern Nevada. “I realize (this goal) is high in the sky, but education is doable.”

United Way on Thursday celebrated the impact it has had in the community in recent years and recognized the individuals and companies that stepped up to make change happen. Its annual luncheon, Community in Blue | Campaign Celebration 2013-14 took place at the Paris Las Vegas.

During the event, the nonprofit’s recent achievements in education, health and financial stability were highlighted. People whose lives were touched by the nonprofit and its community partners shared their stories through recordings played on two large screens.

“We look back a year and look at our accomplishments,” Palmer said soon after the event, which is typically attended by 400 to 500 people.

From 2010 to 2013, more than 250,000 immunizations were provided to children through United Way community partnerships, according to the organization’s impact results.

More than 17,000 children received preventive care from a family doctor, and more than 25,000 dental services were provided to families at no cost.

During the same period, more than 35,000 high school students and their families received information, support and resources to increase on-time graduation.

Also, 1,000 young children who didn’t qualify to attend preschool for free received scholarships, according to the results, which were highlighted during the event.

Some of the financial stability achievements included helping Southern Nevada residents file more than 18,100 tax returns, with $13.3 million in tax credits returned and $23.9 million in tax refunds.

The nonprofit typically raises a little more than $11 million, which goes back to smaller nonprofits in the community to help improve the lives of people, Palmer said. The amount has been steady over the last few years.

The nonprofit doesn’t focus much on the amount they raise, but more on the change it wants to make in those three critical areas, Palmer said.

“It’s about making an impact in our community,” he said.

Reporter Yesenia Amaro can be reached at (702) 383-0440, or yamaro@reviewjournal.com.


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