VGA created the United We Walk concept and then worked closely with Tri-Faith staff to develop the event. VGA supervised logistical preparations and support (parking, road closures, stage and sound systems, site layout, walk route, and more); communications, PR, and marketing; community outreach; and programming.
VGA’s comprehensive outreach efforts ensured all communities felt welcomed and included. VGA developed a vast database of community organizations, faith-based groups, non-profits, and more, encouraging their full participation in UWW. VGA also spearheaded a Community Info Fair with 22 participating organizations.
In addition, VGA recruited a group of thirty faith representatives to stand on stage together in an unprecedented showing of diversity and solidarity, offering prayers for peace and unity.
The atmosphere at UWW was celebratory and joyful, bringing together people representing members from Omaha’s varied communities, many of whom were previously unaware of Tri-Faith. Grand Marshals representing Omaha’s diverse communities welcomed the crowd before the Walk, and a heartfelt commemoration of the 21st anniversary of 9/11 honored the beginnings of Tri-Faith.
Following the Walk, Temple Israel, Countryside Community Church, the American Muslim Institute, and the Tri-Faith Center hosted open houses with opportunities to learn about Tri-Faith’s mission and each faith. An outdoor stage presented family-friendly entertainment and music, and attendees were invited to stroll the boardwalk on Abraham’s Bridge that connects the buildings on the Tri-Faith Commons. Local food trucks were also on hand to add to the festive atmosphere.
UWW’s inaugural year exceeded all expectations. Over 2,000 walkers pre-registered, and close to 2,500 people participated in the day’s events, making UWW the largest event ever to be held at the Tri-Faith Center. UWW also far surpassed its fundraising goal, raising over $100,000 for Tri-Faith.