The United Way of Thunder Bay is at the mid-point of the campaign for 2017
The United Way of Thunder Bay is at the mid-point of the campaign for 2017
The United Way of Thunder Bay is at the mid-point of the campaign for 2017
The United Way of Thunder Bay is at the mid-point of the campaign for 2017

THUNDER BAY – Mid-November marks the half-way point for the United Way of Thunder Bay’s Campaign. To date, the local organization has raised $1,121,494; 44% of its overall goal for 2017. Campaign Co-Chairs Mike and Kelly Gallagher noted that the goal their team set back in September is still attainable, but will not be realized without donations from individuals, families, and businesses in our community. There are only 5 weeks left before December 31 – the time to give is NOW.

Each year, the United Way campaign starts off at zero. One of its main goals is to raise enough money to support all approved funding requests. The United Way currently funds 59 local programs and services. Thousands of people rely on these resources which in many cases are not only a support but a lifeline in their most vulnerable times.

“Right now, someone is coping with the everyday challenges caused by poverty, mental illness, isolation, or domestic violence.  Seniors have to choose between having a warm house or a warm meal, kids are forced to grow up too fast, and individuals struggle to hold it all together for one more day.” says Kelly “Sometimes there are gaps in the supports available to address these situations; fortunately in our community, we have the United Way of Thunder Bay and its network of community partners, working together with generous donors, to fill these gaps.”

Do you know what your donation looks like? It looks like Jase, a former addict suffering from mental health issues and a history of being abused. He was homeless, living on the streets and hustling just to survive. Because of supports in Thunder Bay, and United Way funded programming, Jase is now in his third year of studies at Lakehead University, with an 85% average.

It looks like Adam who grew up in a distressed neighbourhood and a fractured household. From the age of five, your donations have given him a safe place to go as a child and the confidence he needed as a teen to finish high school. Today, he is a college graduate coordinating some of the same programming he received help from and has become a role model for kids from similar backgrounds.

It looks like Mary, a young single mother living in an area with crime, drugs and gang activity.  Mary was determined to provide a better life for her children so she enrolled in a funded program to receive support and develop new skills.  Through hard work, determination, and connecting to the resources she learned about in class, Mary founded the Vale/Limbrick Action Group.  She is making her neighbourhood a safer place and strengthening her community.

For thousands of local people, there is no overnight fix for the effects of poverty, abuse, and illness. For many, it is a long journey, but one that is easier to walk when you are not alone and when you are given access to a network of community programs. That access can only be made available when people give.

Tomorrow is Black Friday, followed by Cyber Monday – two days that are good for the economy. There is also Giving Tuesday – a day for thinking of others and giving back. If you have not yet made your gift to the United Way this is the perfect time to do so! Make a donation through your workplace campaign, send a cheque through the mail, or make a gift online at www.uwaytbay.ca. You can even visit the office in person at 1006-715 Hewitson St.

Never given to the United Way before? Now is a great time to start because, for all new donors who give a Buck A Day ($365), Tbaytel will match that donation (to a total of $10,000)! For those already giving but not quite a BAD donor yet, Tbaytel will match the difference when you increase your gift to $365.

“We wish to thank all those who have already made their donations and helped us to get to the half-way mark! For those who haven’t yet – there is still time to make a difference! Your donation will not only change lives, it can save lives. Give local – Give today.”
Mike and Kelly Gallagher – 2017 United Way Campaign Co-Chairs

Mike and Kelly Gallagher – 2017 United Way Campaign Co-Chairs

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