United Way provides free Uber rides, toilet paper, PPE to partners across SELA


United Way provides 2,400 Uber rides, 30,000 masks, 73,000 toilet paper rolls, additional PPE to partners throughout Southeast Louisiana


NEW ORLEANS – United Way of Southeast Louisiana announced Wednesday the donation of critical goods and services -- including Uber rides, toilet paper rolls and personal protective equipment -- to community partners throughout Southeast Louisiana. 

The donations will help vulnerable residents and frontline workers access much-needed transportation and essential items as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in the region. 

“We are grateful for these opportunities to increase United Way’s COVID-19 response efforts as we work to stabilize some of our region’s most vulnerable households and workers,” said Michael Williamson, UWSELA president and CEO. “These donations will ensure that individuals who do not have access to basic necessities, like transportation and toilet paper, which many of us take for granted, can have the access every person deserves and needs to live a healthy and prosperous life.”

Collectively, the donations are estimated at a value of more than $150,000. 

Uber Rides

UWSELA, with support from the Louisiana Association of United Ways, delivered 2,400 free Uber gift cards to community partners throughout the region. The rides will help provide transportation for frontline health care and grocery store workers, as well as low-income and vulnerable residents.

Community partners receiving free Uber rides to distribute include:

  • Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans
  • Justice and Accountability Center of Louisiana
  • LCMC’s Children’s Hospital New Orleans and West Jefferson Medical Center
  • Southeast Louisiana Legal Services
  • Louisiana-owned grocers, including Breaux Mart, Canseco’s, Circle Food Store, Langenstein’s, Robert Fresh Market and Rouses

Toilet Paper Rolls

UWSELA partnered with leading toilet paper maker Cottonelle® to donate more than 73,000 rolls of toilet paper to Second Harvest Food Bank, who will manage communitywide distribution to vulnerable families in need.  

The donation is a part of the largest single donation -- one million rolls across America -- in Kimberly-Clarks (NYSE: KMB) Cottonelle brand history as a part of its larger commitment to United Way.

Masks and PPE

UWSELA secured more than 30,000 face masks, 6,500 bottles of hand sanitizer and 6,500 pairs of protective gloves through its partnerships with The Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE:PG) and UPS (NYSE:UPS).

Bogalusa City Councilwoman Gloria Kates helped coordinate the distribution of masks, hand sanitizer and gloves to 65 churches throughout Washington Parish. 

Each church received 100 masks, 100 bottles of hand sanitizer and 100 pairs of gloves. 

In Tangipahoa Parish, 7th Ward Marshall Pat Farris collaborated with area churches to organize mask giveaways to their congregations and parish residents. 

UWSELA has generated more than $9 million to date in Coronavirus-related community impact through direct service, volunteerism, meal deliveries, and partner funding. 

Learn more about UWSELA’s relief efforts at UnitedWaySELA.org/COVID19

Individuals in need of resources or support should dial 211 or text their zip code to 898211 for assistance. 


About United Way of Southeast Louisiana

For more than 95 years, United Way of Southeast Louisiana (UWSELA) has been a leader and trusted partner in improving lives and making a lasting difference. We fight to eradicate poverty by preparing people for quality jobs, growing incomes, and affording better health and education opportunities throughout Jefferson, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, and Washington parishes. We have a bold vision of equitable communities where all individuals are healthy, educated, and financially stable – and we have a plan. United Way of Southeast Louisiana’s Blueprint for Prosperity guides all strategic investments in programs, initiatives, collaborations, volunteerism, and advocacy aimed at tackling poverty. For more information, please visit UnitedWaySELA.org. Find us on social: @UnitedWaySELA.