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FCARI: A Guide to Senior Storage

Moving into a new home is always a challenge. For seniors, there's more to consider beforehand. The transition into smaller homes or senior living arrangements often leads to a need to store a houseful of furniture and a lifetime's worth of keepsakes. Here are some of the things you should look for when choosing a storage facility for seniors:

  • Flexible pricing, or even a veteran's discount, can be helpful for seniors moving on a budget. Flexibility is important as seniors may move items out of storage once they settled in their new homes. The option for a monthly rental instead of a fixed-term lease is also recommended.
  • Valet service, free or discounted truck delivery will make the move easier

What are the warning sights to watch out for?

  • Rigid pricing or unit policies that impose a one-size-fits-all approach to senior storage
  • Long-term lease requirements that force seniors to rent more space than they're likely to need in the near future
  • Inadequate security at the site, given the cash value of expensive items and heirlooms that are being stored
  • Restricted access or bad site layouts, which can make it difficult for movers to get close to the unit when moving bulky items such as couches
  • Poorly sealed units that are not ventilated or climate-managed, which can expose irreplaceable items to moisture, mold and other hazards
  • Puddles of water inside public areas of the building, which indicate that leaks might be present within the units themselves.

You can learn more about finding the best storage options for your needs here.

United Way logo

United Way Launches Network Advisory Council

United Way

"United Way Worldwide (UWW) announced... the creation and membership of the United Way Network Advisory Council, a new advisory body that will engage with UWW leadership to ensure that local and state United Way voices inform UWW decisions... Local United Way CEO members of the Network Advisory Council [include United Way of Rhode Island's president and CEO, Cortney Nicolato]."


Lovely couple spending a great time together

FCARI: CareBreaks, Powerful Tools for Caregivers, & Nursing School Respite Programs

CareBreaks Program

The Diocese of Providence CareBreaks Program offers a program of respite services to the primary caregivers of eligible individuals through Information, Referral and Service Coordination, and a respite break. This is a cost-sharing program with services available on a statewide basis.

CareBreaks provides short-term relief to primary caregivers who care for a friend or loved one on a day-to-day basis. Respite breaks for a primary caregiver are often necessary to allow that person to continue providing care over a long period of time. CareBreaks allows the primary caregiver time off either to take a vacation, shop, attend to personal business, or just rest.

The objectives of CareBreaks are:

  • to preserve maximum independence of the care recipient and the primary caregiver by preventing or postponing institutionalization of the care recipient;
  • provide the least restrictive lifestyle for both the care recipient and primary caregiver;
  • and to maintain or improve the quality of life of both the care recipient and primary caregiver.

Services and offerings: Powerful Tools for Caregivers

Catholic Social Services of Rhode Island offers the Powerful Tools for Caregivers training program, to give you the skills to take care of yourself while caring for someone else. By taking care of your own health and well-being, you become a better caregiver. Classes are led by experienced class leaders in both English and Spanish. In six weekly classes, currently virtual, caregivers develop a wealth of self-care tools to:

  • reduce personal stress;
  • change negative self-talk;
  • communicate their needs to family members and healthcare or service providers;
  • communicate effectively in challenging situations;
  • recognize the messages in their emotions, deal with difficult feelings;
  • and make tough caregiving decisions.

Class participants also receive a copy of The Caregiver Helpbook, developed specifically for the class.

  • Register for a Powerful Tools for Caregivers class:

Contact Jan Vargas at 401-421-7833 Ext. 202 or

Nursing School Respite

In addition to the Diocese’s cost sharing program for respite, respite services are available free of charge by junior and senior level nursing students from RIC, URI (pediatric clients only), CCRI, and Salve Regina University. The program is designed to provide respite for caregivers of children and adults who have long-term disabilities or complex medical needs and require the help of a care provider in order to remain at home. The program has been functioning since 2016 through CareBreaks, the participating colleges, and the Rhode Island Office of Healthy Aging. It has provided an innovative addition to the ways in which home care is provided in RI. An option to access the nursing student program is included on the general application for respite services.

  • Register for the Nursing Student Program:

Contact Ann McCarthy at 401-421-7833 Ext. 209 or

For More Information

  • Visit our website:
    • Contact Hector M. Munoz, CareBreaks Coordinator at 401-421-7833 Ext. 212
  • Apply for respite services:
    • Call Catholic Social Services of RI at 401-421-7833 Ext. 212
    • Download an application from our website:
    • Mail completed application with the required documentation:


Catholic Social Services

One Cathedral Square

Providence, RI 02903



Diana Garlington standing at a fence in front of her home. By JONATHAN WIGGS/GLOBE STAFF

‘Redlining never really went away’

The Boston Globe

While 62 percent of all Rhode Islanders owned a home in 2019, only 34 percent of Black Rhode Islanders did, according to a newly published report by Brown University researchers, funded by United Way of Rhode Island.

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Let’s find a way to help RIers face retirement

The Boston Globe

"Advocates, including Kristina Brown, program officer of housing and economic policy for United Way of Rhode Island, say a voluntary RISavers program could be one way to help private sector workers save for retirement without creating new costs for employers."


Horizontal 401Gives logo. APRIL 1, 2022 powered by in United Way of Rhode Island

401Gives Will Raise Money for RI Nonprofits

Rhode Island Monthly

"When we first had the vision to create 401Gives, none of us could have imagined today's reality. But on April 1, we all have an opportunity to make a gift and make a difference. Every [nonprofit] in our state has been affected by the current health crisis and needs help," says Cortney Nicolato, president and CEO of United Way Rhode Island.

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Join RI Realtors in supporting 401Gives

The Rhode Show

With 401Gives returning in April, many are looking ahead at various ways they can give back to help so many in need. Joining us on 'The Rhode Show'... with more information and to discuss how we can increase philanthropy in The Ocean State were Annie Becker, President, REALTOR® Foundation: Rhode Island, and Jennifer Remmes, Director of Resource Operations, United Way.


Destenie Vital is the executive director of What Cheer Flower Farm.JONATHAN WIGGS/GLOBE STAFF

Cheer Flower Farm brings blossoms for free

The Boston Globe

"What Cheer Flower Farm... emerged last week as the top winner of the second-ever Nonprofit Innovation Lab, securing $50,000 during the final pitch competition... 'We wanted to reach kids... in stressful circumstances and help to try to alleviate their anxiety with fresh flowers and some educational programing," shared Destenie Vital, executive director of the Farm.


Roshni Darnal, director of community investments for United Way of Rhode Island, shares how United Way can help Rhode Islanders file their taxes for free.

United Way helping R.I.ers file taxes for free


"The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program connects those who qualify with someone who can help them prepare and file their taxes... Rhode Islanders interested in finding the nearest location and making an appointment can check online or call 211."


United Way Hosting Equity Challenge

As part of United Way of Rhode Island’s ongoing commitment to and demonstration of diversity, equity, and inclusion, the organization is preparing to host its 2024 Equity Challenge. All Rhode Islanders, individuals, and families, as well as local businesses, organizations, and groups are invited to participate in the challenge, which is being offered at no […]

United Way Accepting Applications for Providence Equity Fund

In collaboration with the City of Providence and aligned with its mission to build racial equity and opportunities for all Rhode Islanders, United Way has issued a request for proposal (RFP) for the Providence Equity Fund grant program. Available funding is to support strategies that promote racial and social equity, economic mobility, and educational opportunities for underserved populations in Providence.

United Way Hosts 12th Children’s Book Drive

United Way of Rhode Island’s Children’s Book Drive is back! In April and May, we’re teaming up with Books Are Wings to help Rhode Island children build their own libraries at home. Join us by buying and shipping books, dropping off books at one of our collection sites, or hosting a drive.

United Way Selects Leaders for Executive Director Learning Circle

Laser-focused on its work to support the needs of the state’s nonprofit community… United Way of Rhode Island has kicked off its latest Executive Director Learning Circle. The organization has selected 11 local nonprofit leaders to participate in the yearlong program that focuses on strategic development and increasing their organizations’ capacity to deliver their social impact work.

401Gives Registration Is Open to All Rhode Island Nonprofits

401Gives is returning on Monday, April 1, and United Way of Rhode Island invites all local nonprofits to participate and raise funds to support their mission-driven work. This year’s 401Gives is the fifth anniversary of what is the Ocean State’s largest single fundraiser to benefit and uplift the nonprofit sector.

Rhode Islanders Can Find Help With Medicare Open Enrollment

United Way of Rhode Island is offering assistance to those age 65 and older and adults with disabilities who need help enrolling in or reviewing their Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage plans for 2024 coverage. The current open enrollment period ends on Dec. 7 and is the only time at which individuals can make changes.

Medicare Open Enrollment Events 2023

United Way of Rhode Island is offering free assistance to those age 65 and older and adults with disabilities who need help enrolling in or reviewing their Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage plans for 2024 coverage. In addition to the community events listed here, individuals can find help with Medicare open enrollment by calling the Point at (401) 462-4444.

Statement on Rhode Island Afterschool Network Transition

United Way of Rhode Island is excited to announce that the Rhode Island Afterschool Network (RIAN) will expand its efforts effective October 1, 2023 with Rhode Island Foundation serving as its fiscal sponsor.

Sandra Mazo Appointed to Women United Global Council

The Washington Trust Company… today announced that Sandra Mazo, mortgage loan officer (NMLS # 269909), has been appointed to the Executive Committee for the Women United Global Leadership Council of United Way Worldwide. Women United® represents 55,000 members working with United Way in more than 200 communities across the globe. Sandra was nominated by United Way of Rhode Island.

Nancy Wolanski Hired as Director of Nonprofit Resource Center

United Way of Rhode Island has hired Nancy Wolanski as the inaugural director of the state’s new Nonprofit Resource Center. She assumed the role on Monday, July 31. Most recently, Nancy was executive director of the Grantmakers Council of Rhode Island.

Power The Future Career Exploration Event Open to R.I. Students

Planned to be the state’s premier youth and family career exploration and workforce development event, United Way of Rhode Island will host its first annual Power The Future on Saturday, Aug. 19, at the Rhode Island Convention Center. The empowering day is open to all local students and their families, at no cost.

United Way Investing $10 Million in Community Programs

With a focus on achieving the goals of its LIVE UNITED 2025 plan to build racial equity and opportunities for all Rhode Islanders, United Way of Rhode Island is investing $10 million in the work of community organizations over three years. These latest grants have been awarded from United Way’s Community Impact Fund and received by… 45 local nonprofits.