407-823-3094 LiveUnited@ucf.edu

10/2/18, By Danielle Benghiat

We invite you to contribute to a collection of stories from those whose lives have been impacted by charitable organizations. Knight Stories provides a glimpse into real life accounts of how charitable agencies, like the United Way’s partners and programs, have affected members of our Knight family.

Stories are powerful. They evoke emotions or feeling in any audience. They are one of the most effective ways to create a connection, build a bond, and inspire. For advocates, incorporating a narrative into your outreach can elevate the effectiveness of your efforts to inform donors and make sure people know about resources available to them.

If you are talking to people about the campaign, we encourage you to share your personal story – or one from someone else.

Here are three examples of the many stories that people have shared:

A few years back my sister in law fell on hard times; house foreclosure, divorce, and illness. The family rallied to help with funds and a room to stay in but it was obvious that she needed assistance that would help her long term. She needed a hand up, not a hand out. During one of my many calls to local agencies I was asked if I had called United Way 211 for help. I had never heard of this but I was willing to call anyone who might help! I called 211 and was immediately assisted by a kind, understanding and patient woman who gave me the name and phone number to a Women’s shelter that not only gave my sister in law a place to live but gave her resources to help put her life back together. My sister in law now lives on her own and has a full time job. Thank you United Way for being there when we needed you!

-Anonymous, UCF Employee


My family has been blessed twice by United Way agencies. When I became the single mom of three baby boys in CT, a United Way agency helped me purchase cord wood to heat our house, and they helped me pay our electric bill. When I moved to Florida, A United Way agency helped me pay for child care so I could afford to go back to work. I am forever grateful and will forever give back to the United Way.

-Susan, UCF Employee


In 2012, my daughter and I encountered an ex co-worker that was in desperate need of assistance financially and with many other areas of her family’s lift. While her husband is in a coma with life-threatening disease, no job, three children ages 10, 15, and 24 (who is disabled), the mom was trying to survive emotionally and struggling financially. After several months of us trying to personally assist this family with food and shelter, we referred them to the United Way. With some guidance and contacts, the lady and her three children were able to get a place to live, personal and clothing items, and medical assistance to sustain them during their crisis.

Thank you, United Way for caring. – Anonymous.

To read more from UCF staff, faculty, students and more, visit Knight Stories. Feel free to share your story as well! http://liveunited.ucf.edu/knightstories

And if you didn’t see her story last year, here is Joanne McCully’s Knight Story: