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Sustainability at Work

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Phone: 503-823-7037


United Way of the Columbia-Willamette

[Pending re-certification]


logoUnited Way of the Columbia-Willamette harnesses the collective power of individual generosity to build strong, connected and engaged communities. The goal is to create change through funded projects in three interconnected focus areas: education, financial stability and health and well-being. Locally founded in 1920, the organization serves the four-county metro area (Multnomah, Clackamas, Washington and Clark counties). United Way offers everyone the opportunity to create change in the local community through giving, advocating and volunteering.


Gold Certification

  • Reusable kitchenware is used by staff and at internal meetings and events.
  • Composting and recycling, including rigid plastics and plastic bags, is easy for staff thanks to a kitchen remodel designed and donated by Neil Kelly.
  • Staff volunteer in the community throughout the year. The Green Team coordinates an Earth Day volunteer project with staff to highlight different aspects of being sustainable, such as re-purposing household materials at the ReBuilding Center, electronics recycling, and removing invasive plants in Forest Park.

  • Gas use reduced by 40% through the replacement of an older boiler with a high efficiency one. Energy Trust of Oregon provided financial incentives for the upgrade.
  • 310,000 kWh of electricity and $24,000 saved in two years since HVAC went through a control upgrade.
  • Black and white copier use went down 20% in two years since setting copiers to default double-sided printing, and intentionally using technology in place of printed copies.
  • Installed “cool roof” on building needing a roof replacement. The cool roof helps mitigate the urban heat island effect by reflecting solar energy, thereby creating lower surface temperatures. Also insulated under the cool roof which should result in less energy needed to heat and cool the building.
  • Carpooling is a common. Staff members take the initiative to set up carpools to volunteer projects and events. The last staff retreat had a goal of 100% participation in carpooling and achieved 90% participation.

Construction volunteering

Garden volunteering


619 SW 11th A, Suite 300, Portland, OR 97205