Programs in Shawnee & Jackson County


Dolly Parton Imagination Library

The Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library and United Way of Kaw Valley are partnering to make Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library available to all children birth to 5 years old in Shawnee County. LEARN MORE


Growing Resilient Organizations with United Way (GROW)

Volunteers are a critical component of successful nonprofits. But recruiting and managing them takes time and expertise that can be in short supply in the busy life of nonprofit agencies. United Way of Kaw Valley, thanks to a grant from the Kansas Volunteer Commission, can help you expand your volunteer capacity with consulting and hands-on help. LEARN MORE


Junior Reader Leader

Junior Leader Readers (JLR) was launched in 2010 by United Way's Young Leaders Society. Through the generosity of corporate or individual sponsorships, we purchase books for pre-k and kindergarten students in Shawnee County. Since its inception, JLR has given away more than 40,000 books. LEARN MORE


Topeka Christmas Bureau 

The Christmas Bureau is an annual tradition that allows everyone in our community to make the holiday season brighter for our Shawnee County neighbors in need. United Way and other community partners connect thousands of individuals and families to a holiday meal and gifts by matching them with agencies or community “adopters.” LEARN MORE


Community Resource Navigation 

The Community Navigator program trains and embeds volunteers with partner agencies to provide front-line client support. Volunteers focus on the early phase of applying for assistance, helping clients prepare paperwork and gather documentation, and providing them access to community resources that might benefit and/or support their needs. LEARN MORE

Programs in Douglas County



The United Way places AmeriCorps members at host-site nonprofit organizations throughout Douglas County, KS. Each member takes on a unique program or project that will help the organization better serve their clients and our community. Members work on projects to increase capacity for leadership, nonprofit operations, community engagement and outreach, and direct services. LEARN MORE


Brainfood Book Program

The United Way Brainfood program partners with the Harvesters 'BackSnack' program to provide a book each Friday to students receiving a weekend food backpack. LEARN MORE


Mengel Swim Pass

Every year the United Way distributes swim passes to Douglas County youth through our partner nonprofits on the front lines. Douglas County nonprofits may apply for swim passes to distribute to their clients. LEARN MORE


Community Resource Navigators

As a bridge between service providers and participant communities, Resource Navigators link community members to the local landscape of service providers to improve their access to housing and other resources. LEARN MORE