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United Way of Greater Cleveland addresses the needs of our neighbors living in poverty

How we view the causes of poverty

The Poverty Tree – Why does poverty persist?

Poverty is much more complex than what most people picture — homelessness, hunger, unemployment. Below the surface are deeply rooted issues that have grown in our community for decades. These causes can’t be separated from one another. They overlap and intertwine to create complex barriers that keep individuals and families living in hardship for generations. Truly understanding this system is the first step toward breaking the cycle of poverty.

Watch an overview video

How we work toward poverty relief

United Way’s investments in programs, services, and agencies reach tens of thousands of Greater Clevelanders who stand to benefit from three community strategies. Each strategy area brings together agencies and innovative initiatives designed to support our neighbors in crisis and move them toward stability. We hold ourselves and our partners accountable for achieving measurable goals in each area.

Economic Mobility
Strategy 1: Ensure that children start kindergarten ready to learn and that youth and adults are connected to jobs with career pathways.
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Health Pathways
Strategy 2: Nourish senior citizens with healthy food and social contact so they can thrive and maintain their independence.
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Housing Stability
Strategy 3: Ensure that our neighbors have – or are on a pathway to – safe, stable, and healthy housing and are able to access resources to meet their basic needs.
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