Southern Maryland’s United Way Chapters Work for the Common Good

Kimberly Bean
Kimberly Bean
Published on July 25, 2018

Where do charitable organizations go when they need fundraising help or volunteers?

In Southern Maryland and across the world, many organizations turn to the United Way.

The United Way traces its roots to Denver, when in 1887, a priest, two ministers, and a rabbi planned the first collaborative campaign to support 10 agencies in their city. Their goal was to work together with these organizations to solve welfare issues in Denver at the time.

The campaign was a success, and a new organization was born. The first United Way outside the United States began in South Africa in 1928. In the mid-1900s, a national organization was created here in the U.S. Fast forward to May 2009 when United Way of the America and United Way International merged to form the current organization, United Way Worldwide.

The United Way focuses its efforts on three areas of work: Education, income, and health. There are more than 1,800 local chapters of the United Way throughout the world that are fundraising and helping organizations in their areas find volunteers and other support for their work.

In Southern Maryland, each county has its own United Way organization focused on efforts within that county.

United Way of Calvert County

Incorporated in 1980, the United Way of Calvert County began by serving six partner organizations in the county. In 2013, that number had grown to 30 partner agencies plus more than 20 others funded through United Way grant programs, according to the organization’s website.

The organization’s work in Calvert County includes early literacy and academic support programs, college and career exploration, a countywide health initiative, financial literacy, and tax preparation help. The United Way of Calvert County also helps organizations get referrals for volunteers and training.

To get involved, volunteer, or donate, visit the United Way of Calvert County website at

United Way of Charles County

Incorporated in 1983, the United Way of Charles County’s mission is to “provide all citizens of Charles County the means to invest in their community to bring about positive changes in people’s lives.” Like all United Way branches, the organization focuses on education, income, and health initiatives.

The United Way of Charles County partners with organizations and government agencies to provide a wide variety of services to county residents and to tackle community-wide problems. The organization publishes an annual directory pf human services and gives grants to partner agencies.

To see a list of partner agencies or get involved in United Way of Charles County, visit its website at

United Way of St. Mary’s County

Working to advance the common good in St. Mary’s County, the United Way of St. Mary’s County works in the areas of education, income, and health for residents of the county. Its annual workplace campaign makes it easy for those who work in the county to contribute to the United Way’s work each payday. Other annual events include the Day of Caring and the Harvest 5K, a fundraiser run/walk.

For more information on the United Way of St. Mary’s County and a list of partner organizations it supports, visit

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