Connecting hearts, minds, and hands to meet needs in our community
This Christmas Let’s Unite to Fight the Root Cause of Poverty training people why they should work, how to work, how to find a job, and how to keep a job. 

The War on Poverty didn’t work, because welfare isn’t the answer. The American political approach has served only to condemn families to a lifetime in poverty.
Rather than decades more of government handouts, our brothers and sisters need a hand-up. Let’s work together to help them replace their sense of hopelessness with hope, the captive nature of their dependence upon others with liberation through self-reliance, and the overwhelming stress of never-ending debt with true financial freedom.
Why do the poor need help? You’ve heard people say, “There are plenty of jobs out there. Why don’t people just go to work?” The short answer is that many people, especially those who grew up without a hard-working role model, through no fault of their own simply don’t even know where to start.

Where do we start?
To provide those in poverty with a way out, UNITE INDY has become Central Indiana’s Certified Provider of Jobs for Life, a Biblically-based job preparation course that teaches the Scriptural truths mentioned in the Flip the List video above.
In addition to the faith-based learning, our Jobs for Life students will also be prepared with practical instruction that includes confidence building, development of a vocational plan, resume preparation, mock interviews, and employer expectations.
Each Jobs for Life student is paired with a mentor who will walk alongside the student during the 8-week course, hopefully for six months to a year more, and possibly they will form a life long bond.
Working first with reentrants
On February 2, 2021, we’re starting our next class with a group of parolees who have decided to settle within Marion or one of the surrounding counties. We will work to help them to defeat the curse of poverty for them and their families. Obtaining a good job is the biggest deterrent to returning to incarceration.
To aid them in their job search, UNITE INDY has developed, the first and only job site that connects those with a criminal record to employers willing to give a second chance.
Once visitation limitations are lifted in Indiana prisons, we’ll be taking Jobs for Life behind the walls. Next, we will be offering to serve those that who are unemployed or under employed in the communities that surround our urban churches.

How can you help?
  1. Volunteer to be a Champion (mentor).
  2. Volunteer to be a Prayer Team Leader.
  3. Give $120 - Your tax deductible gift will buy either 12 Student Workbooks for a class or 12 meals for students, their mentors, and instructors to gather around a table before each class, sharing food, transforming the moment into something more unique by creating a sense of community, which strengthens the relationship building process. Please:
  • Give via Credit Card.
  • Send a Check to support this work! to Unite Indy, 241 W. 38th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46208.

Thanks to all our amazing supporters! Please consider the opportunities that are listed above. You can change a life!
Letters from Inmates Keep Coming--Consider Becoming a Letter Writer!
More letter writers are needed! We have ten new letters from incarcerated individuals who are hungry to receive uplifting correspondence from someone who will encourage and befriend them. Even those who sometimes received visitors have been closed off from family since early Spring due to COVID restrictions. Become a light in a dark space, share your kind words, advice, and experience with someone who really needs a solid person in his or her life. Become an inmate letter writer by signing up today. We’ll help you connect and answer any questions you might have. Click here!
3,000 Ways to Leave Incarceration Makes Reentry A Puzzle
Gregg Keesling, President of RecycleForce, told members of the Marion County Reentry Coalition during a weekly meeting, that our criminal justice system doesn’t just have three different sets of standards for reentrant parolees following incarceration in federal, state, and local facilities. He told us that, because each county has its own rules, there are more than 3,000 variations that those working in reentry could encounter. As we at UNITE INDY organize job preparation training for those soon to be released from incarceration, and then find job opportunities for them, the maze of rules is daunting, but with individual mentoring and powerful training tools we will get the job done!
Click here for more on the Reentry Coalition! And read about our training program, Jobs for Life.
Very Bad. Would Not Visit Again.
I saw a t-shirt that had a huge 2020 printed on it. Underneath there was the outline of five stars, with only one filled in. The review said: “Very bad. Would not visit again.” Most people feel that way about the last 12 months. It has been more than difficult, and the aftermath is still affecting us. Loss of loved ones, loss of jobs, we’ve been shut up in our homes like caged tigers pacing back and forth, and the bad news keeps on coming. 
Meanwhile the world continues to turn. As a city, we’ve lost more than 200 people through criminal homicide this year. These killings affect us all, especially the mothers, who deal with loss and sorrow for the rest of their lives. The local children grow up expecting their lives to be short, having seen so many acts of violence all around them, and whole neighborhoods live in a general angst of fear and grief. It seems 2020 has been a banner year for sadness...
The Fight Against Payday Lending Continues
The Indiana Payday Coalition met this month with reports from those working to limit the damaging effect of high-interest loans on so many in Indiana. We will push this year for legislation to overturn the rent-a-bank rule, to extend the Military Lending Act to every one in the country providing credit at 36% interest or less, and to form a rapid response team to act in the Indiana Statehouse in a more timely and powerful way.
It has become obvious that payday lending is not the only venue for those who practice usury. Those working to end this usury realize that payday loan companies aren't the only ones doing this kind of lending. We are expanding our focus to include banks and others who practice usery of the poor.
Why Support UNITE INDY?
UNITE INDY fights the root cause of poverty, which impacts other major problems we face in our city.
In addition to a major effort to work with the 12,000 inmates reentering our area after incarceration (above) we are working to improve employment in our poorest neighborhoods.

Support of Ministries and Charities:
Since 2017 UNITE INDY has provided a free web-based system at that connects churches, their time or gifts of money or needed items. UNITE INDY also provides the manpower necessary to assist smaller organizationsthat have no one to upload needed itemsthe help they require to access this service. Through this portal, UNITE INDY has brought thousands of dollars worth of needed goods into the hands of those who assist the poor.

Serving the Servants:
UNITE INDY comes behind urban pastors and ministry leaders by addressing personal and professional needs with free services for those who work tirelessly in their neighborhoods to care for the needy and bereft.

Remember, almost 1 out of every 3 children in Indianapolis lives below the poverty level, yet even in the aftermath of the shut down, as our economy comes back to life and employment is returning, all this good news stops at the lines surrounding many of our inner city neighborhoods. In some neighborhoods of Marion County unemployment is now 27%, and poverty remains the overwhelming divider of people.

Please send a check today to UNITE INDY, 241 W. 38th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46208. Or donate via credit card by clicking Here. It is secure and safe. By sending your fully tax deductible gift* now we can have a greater impact meeting needs in our community in 2021.

Many, many thanks, and Merry Christmas!

*UNITE INDY, Inc. is approved under Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 501(c)(3) as a Public Charity, donors can deduct contributions they make under IRC Section 170.
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