Heart of Florida United Way Invests $100,000 In City Year Orlando to Help Build Relationships and Confidence in Orange County Students

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As part of our commitment to promoting equitable educational opportunity in Central Florida, we have invested $100,000 in City Year Orlando — a long-standing partner of ours that engages its team of AmeriCorps members to mentor Orange County Public School students in need. 
The investment comes at the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year to support our schools as they continue to face challenges exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Research continues to illuminate how the pandemic has resulted in significant learning loss, which is particularly true for the historically marginalized populations served by both City Year and United Way — like Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed (ALICE) families.  

A December 2021 report from McKinsey and Company found that students in majority Black schools are a full five months behind in math and reading compared to two months behind for majority white schools.  
With the majority of City Year Orlando’s student population being African American/Black (63%) and from economically disadvantaged households (100%), these declines are unfortunately well-represented here in Orlando. 
With our investment, we hope that City Year Orlando is able to continue providing critical support to teachers, staff, and students that will help bridge learning and social-emotional development gaps — ultimately leading to more equitable outcomes in education.  
This is done by City Year working with AmeriCorp members who serve in Orange County Public Schools as student success coaches. These coaches are able to build deep and trusting relationships with students — which often results in the students opening up, gaining confidence, and learning important skills that will help them academically but also in life.   
The work of City Year is crucial to our community, and we’re proud to support their efforts.  
What You Can Do  

  • Share this blog with your family, friends, and colleagues to raise awareness about how HFUW and City Year Orlando are working together to support education in our community.  
  • Donate to Heart of Florida United Way so we can continue to support organizations and programs in Central Florida.  

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