Our Impact


Since 1946, Lubbock Area United Way has worked to address the root issues of the most significant challenges facing our South Plains communities to create lasting, positive change. The key to our success is our long-term partnerships with our Community Partners and our involvement with various local coalitions.



Our goal is to increase access to educational programs and materials to promote literacy and educational attainment for people of all ages.

  • More families have access to quality, affordable childcare.
  • Increase the number of children who are kindergarten ready.
  • Increase the number of children who are grade-level readers by the end of third grade.
  • More adults obtain their GED.
  • Decrease the percentage of local adults who are illiterate.




Start Smart TexasIn 2019, Lubbock joined the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading (CGLR) and became a Start Smart city. CGLR is a collaborative effort to improve reading proficiency and early school success for children from low-income families. In Lubbock, the local GLR campaign is supported by a partnership of Lubbock Area United Way, Lubbock ISD, Frenship ISD, and Lubbock-Cooper ISD.

The communities’ action plans address three underlying challenges that can keep young children, especially those from low-income families, from learning to read proficiently — school readiness, school attendance, and summer learning. Membership in the GLR Network gives Lubbock access to experts and policymakers focused on early school success; assistance in addressing the challenges that keep many children from learning to read; and access to the online Community Learning for Impact & Improvement Platform (CLIP), which is designed to lower the barriers and costs associated with spreading information about what’s working, why and under what conditions.


  • Pre-K and Preschool Registration: Helping students get the best start to their school careers and life through high-quality pre-k and preschool programming.
  • United We ReadIn the fall semester, United Way partners with Lubbock County school districts for United We Read. Through the program, volunteers visited every second-grade classroom in the county, read a book, lead a craft, and sent every child home with a book copy. Approximately 3,500 students and 500 volunteers participate annually.

To learn more about Start Smart Click Here



Lubbock Area United Way hosted its first United We Read event in 2018. More than 500 volunteers read the book The Little Red Fort to 3,535 second-graders across the Lubbock, Frenship, Lubbock-Cooper, Shallowater, and New Deal Independent School Districts. Every child went home with a copy of the book and a craft, including 138 books in Spanish.

The purpose of the event was to highlight the value of students being grade-level readers by third grade. At this point, students who have not mastered basic reading skills will begin to fall behind in every area of study as classrooms shift from learning to read to reading to learn. The event also created a focus on the importance of parents reading with their children. 

We continue to build United We Read and strive for excellence in the coming years as this event reaches greater heights in Lubbock County. 

To learn more about United We Read Click Here.

Our goal is to support local prevention efforts and access to services for victims of child abuse and neglect, sex trafficking, and family violence.

Every day three children are confirmed abused or neglected in Lubbock County, nearly double the state average. Sex trafficking continues to be a growing issue as our community grows. Both are underreported crimes.

  • Children and families have access to quality, local programs for all needs including, but not limited to, intervention, counseling, family support services, and shelters.


In partnership with the South Plains Coalition for Child Abuse Prevention, we mark Child Abuse Prevention Month in April with the Go Blue Lubbock initiative. By asking people to wear blue on Fridays during the month, our goal is to raise awareness about child abuse and neglect on the South Plains and help connect families with resources to prevent abuse from ever starting.



Lubbock Area United Way is partnering with Voice of Hope to educate groups in the community about what sex trafficking is and how it affects the South Plains.

Our goal is to advocate for local access to quality mental health services and support.

  • More people have access to affordable, local mental health services.
  • More people utilize local mental health services.

We're working with the West Texas Mental Health Initiative to increase education on how individuals and families can access mental health services in our community. We want to reduce the stigma around mental health and make sure that everyone receives the support they need.

Learn more about mental health in Lubbock County in our Community Status Report, and access mental health support - including affordable resources - on our mental health page.

Our goal is to create opportunities to move households toward financial stability.

  • We want more of the community to understand ALICE - Asset Limited Income Constrained Employed.
  • We all know people who are ALICE. These are workers who educate our children, keep us healthy, and make our quality of life possible, yet do not earn enough to support their own families. ALICE households are forced to make tough choices, such as deciding between quality childcare or paying the rent, which have long-term consequences not only for ALICE but for all.
  • More families can achieve and maintain a stable budget as defined in the ALICE model.
  • More adults have access to job training and coaching for career advancement.

Learn more about ALICE here.