The partnership between United Way and UPS goes back 33 years – nationally, UPS and its employees were the first to raise $1 billion in contributions to United Way.


Here locally, their campaign grew by nearly 20 percent last year thanks to the leadership of Henry Beards and a campaign team that was strategic about meeting the UPS employees where they were, with presentations in early mornings and late evenings. In the case of UPS’s Monroe facility, for example, such engagement helped UPS finish among Union County’s top 10 campaigns.


Given that UPS hires numerous veterans, as well as an entry-level workforce with the opportunity to qualify for tuition reimbursement, United Way’s presentations also extend beyond fundraising to share details about supportive services UPS employees might benefit from. Employees get involved as well, such as Brent Heideman chairing our regional Community Investment health committee.


“UPS is very intentional about helping employees understand the purpose and the impact of their strong United Way connection,” said Sherill Carrington, United Way’s assistant vice president of corporate partnerships. “UPS is everywhere out in the community and they want to be just as known for giving back as for their deliveries.”


Sometimes they even give back by delivering. A few years ago, United Way’s volunteer arm coordinated the move of Charlotte ToolBank, which supplies tools for our hands-on volunteer experiences. UPS offered to coordinate the logistics and delivery of enough tools to outfit an entire hardware store on a Saturday morning, but Charlotte had an ice storm that day. When United Way suggested rescheduling, UPS wouldn’t hear of it – weather doesn’t hinder their deliveries or their volunteerism.


“They’ll do whatever we ask of them without hesitation,” Carrington added. “The men and women in brown are simply pleasant to work with, and they’re awesome community partners.”