Metro United Way’s central services coordinator, John Sands

For 102 years, Metro United Way has helped people in our region by bringing area residents into their mission, “to improve lives and our community by engaging people to give, advocate, and volunteer.” Their 24-hour hotline at 211 connects people to vital resources and ways to serve our community.

Think of a thing people need, and Metro United Way is there. They bring healthy food, warm housing and clothing, financial help, youth mentorship, early childhood education, and programs to boost the mental and physical health of people throughout Louisville, its surrounding counties, and into Southern Indiana.

They partner with schools, government and community organizations, corporations, labor, and individuals to operate as a hub for meaningful initiatives that change people’s lives for the better every day and fund over 90 agencies.

The organization’s central services coordinator, John Sands, encourages anyone who sees a need in their community to volunteer. “Just get involved in some way… I think it’s really important if you have those relationships and your own circle of friends and community, then go a little bit further and reach out.

“It doesn’t have to be a huge gesture. You can volunteer to read at the library once a week or once a month. That’s a huge step and it can mean so much to kids.”

Metro United way can always use your donations. This year’s funding goal is $26m. People looking for volunteer opportunities can connect with Metro United Way through the website or the 211 hotline. “If you have an idea, we may already have something there. We may be able to work with you on creating something,” said Sands.

“A few years ago, a young lady decided to do socks and gloves, and just started at her school and then called us.” Metro United Way was able to connect her with ways to distribute the items to those who needed them most. It was a snap for the organization, and, he said, “What a great opportunity for her to get involved, to get her friends involved, and her school excited about volunteering and giving back.”

Sands’ work keeps things going. He pays bills, manages leases, handles much of the insurance, and makes sure facilities throughout the region have all their tangible needs met. “In layman’s terms, I’m the operations manager. I’m kind of the wizard behind the scenes to make sure people have all the support and systems that they need to get their job done.”

Sands is especially proud of two of Metro United Way’s in-house programs: Ages & Stages and Black Male Achievement. Ages & Stages helps parents gauge where pre-K kids are operating and how best to bring them up to speed and prepare them for entering school. Research shows children who lag behind in kindergarten may never quite catch up with peers.

For Sands, who once worked in the private sector, but has been with Metro United Way for 15 years, there’s no place like it. “I’ve never worked at an organization with more heart and compassion and passion — not only for the people within these walls, but for people outside these walls.”

Metro United Way is going paperless, and to make it happen, they’re using SentryFile through Duplicator Sales and Service. With so many departments and so much sensitive information, security is important.

“It is easier for our regional staff who work in Shelby, Bullitt, Oldham, Floyd, Harrison, and Clark counties not to have to drive all the way over here to pull a file from a filing cabinet,” said Sands.

The process has freed up space. It’s also offered more flexibility and mobility to people who work for the organization.

“The team at Duplicator has been phenomenal. They were really diligent about making sure they had someone to train, and have offered multiple trainings.”

Being Metro United Way’s copy machine supplier helped Duplicator Sales and Service integrate the technology to handle documents more efficiently, offering greater security and flexibility in their office environment and beyond, into the wider world where their good works are done.

For a big change, like going paperless, don’t you want someone around the corner instead of a world away? Trust Duplicator Sales and Service: your unduplicated office technology professionals.