Neighbors Helping Neighbors

By Cindy Lavender-Bowe

Executive Director, United Way of the Greenbrier Valley

The Power of the Purse

When is a purse not just a purse?

A purse holds money, currency and funds – all key words that represent power, influence and change. A woman’s purse can create a big impact in the community.

There are simple things we all need for a good life: basic needs like food and shelter; quality education that leads to a stable job; income that supports a family through retirement, and of course, good health. These are the building blocks for a good life. Lose any one of these and the rest can tumble away.

The United Way envisions a world where all individuals and families achieve their potential through education, income stability and healthy lives. We work to achieve these goals by bringing together the resources of the entire community to provide effective and comprehensive help to those in need.

Last year, over 50 women gathered at Harmony Ridge Gallery in support of our community at the inaugural United Way of Greenbrier Valley’s Power of the Purse. Thanks to the generosity of women in our community, nearly $3,000 was raised for projects serving women and children in the Greenbrier Valley.

The Power of the Purse (POP)is a volunteer-driven group and organization of its own design. Women come together to create initiatives, set goals, seek solutions, answers and strategies. In this way, the Power of the Purse is truly a catalyst for making a difference in our communities. Through the POP, we are building a group of dynamic community leaders who are committed to igniting the power of women to advance the common good.

Power of the Purse unites women who care about the same thing: making sure that women and children in our community have a chance for a better life. When one gift is combined with the gifts of others, we make a difference. That’s the Power of the Purse. Together we can transform lives today and for generations to come. These generous gifts will make a difference in the lives of women and children in our communities

The second annual Power of the Purse event will be held Mar. 18 at Harmony Ridge Gallery from 5 to 7 p.m. We invite you to join us and experience the collective power of the purse!

Through the Power of the Purse, we hope to create an even stronger network of support for women and children in our communities.

For more information on Power of the Purse event, to volunteer in the community, or to make a contribution to the United Way of Greenbrier Valley or join our email or mailing list, contact Carol Cales at 304-647-3783 or


Power of the Purse Committee: Shannon Rausenberger, Katie Eads, Mary Baldwin, Cindy Lavender-Bowe, and Deva Wagner
Power of the Purse Committee: Shannon Rausenberger, Katie Eads, Mary Baldwin, Cindy Lavender-Bowe, and Deva Wagner

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