Frequently Asked Questions

What is United Way of Essex and West Hudson?
United Way of Essex and West Hudson is an organization that develops community partnerships and mobilizes the community to create sustained change.

What geographic area is served by United Way of Essex and West Hudson?
United Way covers a population of approximately 700,000 in 13 communities in Essex and Western Hudson Counties: Belleville, Maplewood, East Newark, Newark, East Orange, North Arlington, Harrison, Nutley, Irvington, Orange, Kearny, South Orange and West Orange.

In some cases, special contracts or designations expand our constituency beyond the 13 towns. For example, as a designated calling center for 2-1-1, our United Way will be responsible for handling calls from all of Essex and Hudson Counties. In our role as crisis response coordinator at Liberty State Park in the wake of the September 11th tragedies, we worked with individuals from the entire state of New Jersey, securing intake information and connecting them to their local United Way for services.

What makes United Way different from other charities?
United Way raises a portion of its dollars through workplace giving. We ask people to donate a small portion of each paycheck, which is deducted each pay period and sent to United Way.

United Way raises money via direct mail, special events such as galas, and from corporations, foundations and private individuals. Our Alexis de Tocqueville Society, a branch of the national giving club, honors individuals who make annual personal gifts of $10,000 or more.

In addition, United Way accepts planned gifts, including gifts of stock and bequests.

Why isn’t there a United Way Campaign where I work?
United Way wants to give everyone who lives or works in the Essex-West Hudson region an opportunity to participate in the annual workplace campaign.

If you are interested in starting a payroll deduction campaign at your workplace, send an email to George Xuereb with your name and phone number, or call 973-624-8300 x215

How does United Way distribute money?
United Way conducts assessments in our service area to determine human care needs, which are then identified as areas for funding.

United Way volunteers then review proposals from agencies addressing a specific problem area and make final recommendations for funding to the United Way Board of Trustees.

What is United Way’s overhead cost?

We are pleased to report that United Way of Essex and West Hudson directs 86% of each donated dollar directly to charity.

And, even more importantly, the organizations we fund are able to leverage those dollars at a rate of 2 to 1 – for every dollar we invest, another $2 of additional services are provided.

How does United Way operate?
United Way is led by a volunteer Board of Trustees, one third of whom are elected annually to a two-year term. This board is responsible for setting and approving policy and expenditures by United Way.

Hundreds of additional volunteers work in local companies and organizations to run fundraising campaigns.

And, finally, United Way staff are responsible for the day-to-day operation and effectiveness of the operation.