Commit to equity

Commit to equity

take meaningful action to address the issues of racial equity and justice

The data shows...

...at systemic inequities are the root causes of intergenerational poverty among people of color, here in Rhode Island as elsewhere in this country.

Until we can make sure everyone has an equal shot at the starting line, our state will never reach its full potential. We hope you’ll join us in this journey to make sure Rhode Island is a place where every individual in each community has equal opportunity for justice and prosperity.

What do we mean by "equity?"

Racial equity is a reality in which a person is no more or less likely to experience society’s benefits or burdens just because of the color of their skin.

We are united.

Hundreds of individuals and organizations throughout the state have already pledged to support our LIVE UNITED 2025 strategic plan and take meaningful action to address the issues of racial equity and justice in Rhode Island.

See our partners in equity.

Join the Indigenous Peoples Equity Challenge 2022

To deepen our understanding of Indigenous peoples and their lived experiences, United Way of Rhode Island and Tomaquag Museum have created this five-day Indigenous Peoples Equity Challenge. The Challenge launched in November 2022, and you can join at any time.

Our goal is to provide education and spark conversation about Indigenous history, culture, arts, and issues of today. Some of these topics will challenge us to examine our personal beliefs and practices. By engaging with difficult topics, we can become equity champions in all areas of our lives.

After registering, you'll receive an email each weekday for five days with resources, reflection questions, or actions you can take to help build a more equitable Rhode Island. Each day will focus on a different theme.

If you're a corporate group interested in signing up after November 2022, please contact Janice Pothier-Pac for help with registration.

Join Equity Challenge 2022

Ready to learn more about racial equity? Join United Way of Rhode Island's Equity Challenge 2022. You can start this free, self-guided learning journey when we launch on Feb. 28, 2022 or any time after that.

After registering, you'll receive an email each weekday for three weeks with resources, reflection questions, or actions you can take to help build a more equitable Rhode Island.

Each week will focus on a different theme.

  • Week 1: The Basics
  • Week 2: Deepening Our Understanding
  • Week 3: Equity in Rhode Island

You don't need to have participated in our 21-Day Equity Challenge last year in order to join Equity Challenge 2022. If you did participate last year, Equity Challenge 2022 will be new and different.

Want to start an Equity Challenge 2022 discussion group? United Way partnered with Kristin Cassarino, a dedicated Rhode Island public school educator and equity advocate, to create a facilitator's guide. Request it here.

If you're a corporate group interested in signing up after February 2022, please contact Janice Pothier-Pac for help with registration.

Please join us by signing this pledge:

"We commit to stand with the United Way of Rhode Island to unite our community and resources to build racial equity and opportunities for all Rhode Islanders. We pledge to take meaningful action to address the issues of racial equity and justice in Rhode Island."

learn about equity

SKTBWGCVTFBP3CRL2NWUTK7NIA_4

Rethinking how one of R.I.’s largest nonprofits can grow

The Boston Globe

In October, [Idrees "Lanre"] Ajakaiye was appointed the new chief development officer at... United Way of Rhode Island where he'll be in charge of helping... United Way achieve its current strategic plan, which outlines the nonprofit's investment of $100 million over five years to help achieve racial equity.

READ ON SITE

THE PROVIDENCE CITY COUNCIL gave the second and final approval on Wednesday to a $10 million spending plan for racial reparations. / PBN FILE PHOTO/CHRIS BERGENHEIM

City Council gives final approval to $10M reparations budget

Providence Business News

A two-yearslong effort to bring racial reparations to Providence achieved a milestone Wednesday... The approved funding largely mirrors recommendations set forth by a city panel based on community input, but with one major change that shifts some money into a COVID-19 Equity Fund to be managed by United Way of Rhode Island.

READ ON SITE

Screen Shot 2022-09-26 at 5.29.10 PM_Edit5

How you can save money amidst Rhode Island Energy rate hike

ABC6

With rates rising starting Oct. 1, Rhode Islanders have many ways to save money and energy this fall... [For] anyone... need[ing]... financial assistance... United Way of Rhode Island’s 211 service may help... 'We’re here to help the community navigate resources,' said Courtney Smith, director of... 211... The service is available online at 211 United Way of Rhode Island or over the phone.

VIEW ON SITE

New Survey of R.I. Nonprofits Highlights Dire Need

As Rhode Islanders… prepare to participate in Giving Tuesday, the results of a new survey paint a stark picture of the challenges facing the state’s nonprofit sector. Local community-based organizations continue to provide services for communities still facing pandemic-level needs, while facing inflation-driven costs and inadequate staffing caused by the physical and emotional toll of the last two years.

United Way of Rhode Island Appoints Four to Its Board of Directors

Four community leaders have been appointed to the United Way of Rhode Island Board of Directors… Elected for three-year terms are David Bonenberger, president, Rhode Island Energy/PPL Corporation; Anthony Botelho, senior vice president, team leader, Washington Trust; Courtney Hawkins, health and human services industry executive, Salesforce; and Yahaira “Jay” Placencia, senior vice president, private client advisor, Bank of America.

I. Lanre Ajakaiye Joins United Way of R.I. as Chief Development Officer

Following a broad, competitive search for its chief development officer, United Way of Rhode Island has hired a community leader known to be an innovative changemaker. The organization has chosen Idrees “Lanre” Ajakaiye, who brings a deep, diverse range of experience to United Way’s work to transform the future by building racial equity and creating opportunities for all Rhode Islanders.

UPCOMING EVENTS

401Gives Open House

Join us for a 401Gives Open House on Thursday, Dec. 8 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at Rhode Island College. Learn about Rhode Island's statewide day of giving and how your fabulous nonprofit can be a part of it.

Information sessions will be held at 4:45 p.m. and 5:45 p.m. Light refreshments will be provided.

This event is free and open to the public.

REGISTER

The State of the RI Nonprofit Sector

Join United Way of Rhode Island and Grantmakers Council of Rhode Island for a virtual conversation about The State of the RI Nonprofit Sector on Friday, Dec. 16 from 10 to 11:30 a.m.

Together, we'll explore the challenges facing Rhode Island nonprofits. We'll also discuss opportunities to build capacity and support nonprofit work in 2023.

This event is free and open to the public.

REGISTER