About United Way of Greater Portland

Our Mission

To improve people’s lives in Greater Portland by mobilizing the caring power of our community.

Our History

In 1929, Walter G. Davis and a group of caring, forward thinking individuals founded the Portland Community Chest.  The name of the organization changed to the United Fund in 1956, United Community Services in 1958 and United Way of Greater Portland in 1974.  While our name has changed over the years, our mission has remained the same – to improve people’s lives and make Greater Portland a healthier, safer, and stronger place to live and work.

Our Work

United Way activates community resources for the greatest possible impact. Advancing the common good is about helping one person at a time, and about changing systems to help all of us. To create opportunities for a better life for all, we support programs and implement projects that focus on academic achievement, long-term financial stability, and improved health.

United Way Worldwide

United Way of Greater Portland is part of the the United Way system, which includes approximately 1,400 community-based United Way organizations. Each is independent, separately incorporated and governed by local volunteers. Community partners include schools, government policy makers, businesses, financial institutions, voluntary and neighborhood associations, community development corporations and the faith community.

United Ways ensure that each organization in which they invest is a non-profit, tax-exempt charity governed by volunteers, and that it submits to an annual, independent financial audit, provides services at a reasonable cost, and maintains a policy of non-discrimination.

To learn more about United Way Worldwide, visit their website.