United in Purpose in Muskegon County!
Muskegon County, located along the shoreline of Lake Michigan, is home to 172,188 people (2010 US Census). Muskegon has 26 miles of beaches and dunes, 60 miles of wilderness trails for biking or hiking, Michigan's Adventure Amusement and Water Park, and hotels, dining and cultural arts for every taste and budget.
With 43% of our families earning less than the basic cost of living though, poverty is a key issue in Muskegon County, one we must address as a community in order to inspire change and build a thriving community.
Get Connected. Get Help. Dial 2-1-1.
United Way of the Lakeshore helps thousands of people each year through 211. In a crisis or in a disaster, 211 is here to help every person in our community find food, pay bills, and connect to other essential services. 211 is an easy way to find help of all kinds, right in your community. Need help with food, housing, or paying bills? Need support in a family crisis or community disaster? They are here for you. Any time. All the time. Just call, text, or search online and we’ll get you connected.
211 is the Lakeshore's lifeline for help.
Key United Way of the Lakeshore Programs in Muskegon County:
Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP)
The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) is one of the largest volunteer networks in the nation for people 55 and over. Established over 40 years ago, this federally supported program connects individuals who are at 55+ to volunteer opportunities that impact specific needs and goals in their local communities. The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) is one of three programs operated by the Corporation for National and Community Service under AmeriCorps Seniors.
Dolly Parton's Imagination Library
ALL children under the age of five residing in Oceana County are eligible to participate in Dolly Parton's Imagination Library! Each month, every registered child receives a free, high-quality, age-appropriate book through the mail, continuing until they turn five years old. Imagine every child having their own library of 60 books by the time they go to kindergarten!
Free Tax Preparation - VITA & MyFreeTaxes
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program offers free basic tax return preparation to qualified individuals. VITA sites offer free tax help to people who need assistance in preparing their own tax returns, including:
- People who generally make $60,000 or less
- Persons with disabilities
- Limited English-speaking taxpayers
SingleCare: Prescription Savings
United Way of the Lakeshore is a proud to partner with SingleCare. SingleCare is a free prescription savings service and discount card that can save you up to 80% on medications at most major pharmacies. SingleCare is always free to use and works whether you have insurance or not, because they believe everyone should have access to the lowest prices available for their medications. SingleCare is valid at 35,000+ pharmacies in the United States.
Making an impact on education, economic mobility, and health!
United Way of the Lakeshore is proud to partner with over 35 agencies in Muskegon County to bring programs and services to the community. These agencies and their programs include:
- Dolly Parton's Imagination Library
- HELPS (COGIC Center) - Tutoring & Literacy
- MI Education Corps - Reading Corps
- Orchard View Community Education - Alternative Childcare & Lights on Afterschool
- Pathfinders - Lights on Afterschool
- Read Muskegon - Family Literacy/Empowerment Project
- Region IV Birth to Five Early Literacy Support Network Hub
- Regional Childcare Coalition
- White Lake Community Education - Lights on Afterschool
- The Arc Muskegon - Advocacy & Outreach for Individuals with Disabilities
- Big Brothers Big Sisters - Youth Mentorship
- Boys & Girls Club - Great Futures
- Boy Scouts of America - Leadership Development
- Girl Scouts MI Shore to Shore - Promise Program
- Step Up - Program Coordinator
- 211 Resource Helpline
- American Red Cross - Disaster Relief Services
- Emergency Food & Shelter Fund
- Every Woman's Place - Safe Shelter & Housing First Program
- Eviction Prevention Funds
- Fresh Coast Alliance - Financial Success
- Goodwill Industries - VITA & Employee Resource Network
- Lakeshore Regional Community Development - Homeownership Program
- Love INC - New Directions
- Mission for Area People - Emergency Transportation
- Muskegon County Homeless Continuum of Care
- The Salvation Army - Emergency Social Services
- AgeWell Services - Senior Medical Transportation
- Catholic Charities of West Michigan - Behavioral Health & Healthy Families
- Child Abuse Council of Muskegon County - CASA Program, Children's Advocacy Center, and Prevention Through Education
- Legal Aid of West Michigan - Domestic Violence Intervention & Free Legal Services
- Mediation & Restorative Services - Balanced & Restorative Justice & Family Mediation
- SingleCare Prescription Savings
- The Hope Project - Counseling
- Volunteer for Dental - Dental Care Education
In 2022, over 122,000 families were served in Muskegon County through these programs thanks to our amazing partners!