Mr. Tony J. Vallillo
United Illuminating Company
Q: How long have you been a contributor to United Way?
A: I was introduced to United Way in the early 70’s through the employee campaign at United Illuminating Company. At the time, I had a lot competing for my time so I was not yet focused on community involvement. However, my interest grew as I listened to the presentations by United Way and the compelling stories they brought forth.
Q: Can you share with us an experience that has inspired you to continue to contribute?
A: Years ago, I took an opportunity to visit a United Way program that dealt with substance abuse. I was just overwhelmed by what I saw. The people who were being helped looked pretty desperate, but I could also see hope in their faces. I was also struck by the passion of the people who worked there. It was so real; there were people who really needed help and they were receiving it. That has left a lasting impression on me and is one reason I always contribute.
A: As a parent what did you teach your children about giving?
I told them, that there is nothing certain in this life, you can’t take things for granted and most importantly whenever you can reach out and help people, you should. They have grown to be sensitive to people facing challenges; now rather then trying to shy away from it, they try to help. That, I think, is a big accomplishment.
Q: How is United Way addressing the challenges in our community?
A: In the last 5 to 10 years United Way has really made a lot of improvements by looking at community challenges and focusing on results. United Way’s work with children and early education is a good example. Some time ago, everyone started recognizing that there were some gaps. United Way asked how we, as a community address that challenge? This has helped to attract volunteers and leadership who understand that addressing our community’s challenges is bigger then just funding. To see more results with the same amount of money you have to leverage your investments, have community dialog, civic engagement, and leadership.
We Have Moved.
Please visit our most recent blog posts at: http://www.uwgnh.org/blog
September 26, 2007
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