United Way of Central Maryland (UWCM)
2004 Needs/ Assets Assessment


The United Way retained the consultant team of Urban Information Associates and Hollander Cohen & McBride in January 2004 to assist UWCM in conducting the Needs/ Assets Assessment. A community agenda-setting committee process for the City, and one for the 5 surrounding counties, have been convened by United Way.

Over a four-month project timeline -- January through April 2004 -- the Needs/ Assets Assessment gathered intelligence, enabling the UWCM, along with its many community partners, to discuss priorities among many worthy, competing needs. The project also established a framework for identifying the availability of appropriate private sector revenue streams to address local and regional needs, along with potential strategies for tapping into these resources.

The process consisted of four principal components, described briefly below:

  • one-on-one interviews with key informants identified by the United Way, including local government leaders, area business executives and senior representatives of major service providers and non-profit organizations.
  • a series of focus group sessions to sharpen the issues to be considered among many concerns: from the well-being of children and youth to the challenges facing our seniors; from workforce development strategies to basic literacy programs; from public health and mental illness responses to the challenges of substance abuse and addiction.
  • an inventory of private sector assets, serving to identify some of the main sources of revenue available to address the community’s health and human service needs.
  • a database of key indicators relating to the overall demographics, quality of life, and health, income, education, housing and other indicators of socio-economic conditions in the Baltimore region and each of the metropolitan jurisdictions -- Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Harford and Howard counties and Baltimore City.

For further information about the Needs/ Assets Assessment project, please contact Penny Anderson, Senior Vice President, United Way of Central Maryland at

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