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An archive of the Way to Go! newsletters that were published in 2011.

January 2011

January 2011
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

Community Achievement Celebration

Last call for celebration tickets

January 24 is the deadline to reserve your seat for United Way of Peel Region’s Community Achievement Celebration (CAC) taking place February 4 at the International Centre in Mississauga. You don’t want to miss out on this annual event that celebrates the conclusion of our public fundraising campaign and honours our volunteers and supporters.

The theme of this year’s event is the power of “the dance.” The evening begins with a cocktail reception at 5:30 p.m., followed at 6:30 p.m. by a halal dinner sponsored by PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, entertainment sponsored by Grant Thornton, and our Spirit awards presentation. In addition to having a great time, you could win one of several fabulous prizes including Mary Kay gift baskets, a signed Raptors basketball, dinner for four at Pearson International’s Chef’s Table, and airline tickets to any WestJet destination (donated by Carlson Marketing).

Tickets are $65 each or $650 for a table of 10. Hurry and download your order form today by clicking here or contact Lin Ferguson, Manager, Events at 905-602-3625 or lferguson@unitedwaypeel.org.

Jennifer feels good

JenniferJennifer Kilchenmann, 28, visually impaired with 6 per cent vision in her left eye and 60 per cent vision in her right eye, has always enjoyed an active lifestyle. She works out at the gym, enjoys spending time with her boyfriend, and socializes with friends and family. However, when looking for work, she often felt stigmatized by potential employers who couldn’t see beyond her visual impairment.

“You can have all the skills, but when they see you have a disability, they think you can’t do the job,” she says.

A friend told Jennifer about March of Dimes, a United Way-funded organization that helps people living with physical disabilities enhance their independence and community participation. Jennifer worked with March of Dimes staff to update her resume and hone her job search and interviewing skills. Additionally, the agency’s employment placement specialist spoke with employers on her behalf to discuss her skills and ability to function in the workplace. Today with the help of visual aide devices, Jennifer works as a sales associate with National Sports.

“If it wasn’t for March of Dimes I’d probably still be unemployed,” she says. “The staff is helpful, caring and considerate, and they have supported me every step of my journey. Thanks to March of Dimes and United Way, I feel good about myself and I’m in a job I love!”

Honour Mayor’s 90th birthday with gift to United Way!

Birthday Card

Send a personalized birthday wish to Mississauga Mayor Hazel McCallion and support United Way at the same time. In celebration of Mayor McCallion’s 90th birthday on February 14, United Way has created a unique giving opportunity. For a minimum donation of $25 to United Way, you will receive a specially designed birthday card that you can personalize with a message to the Mayor.

The inside message indicates a donation has been made to United Way in the Mayor’s honour.

This unique birthday card is available exclusively through United Way’s Gifts with Purpose program. You can send an individual birthday wish or get together and send a group message. To participate, visit http://www.unitedwaypeel.org/giftswithpurpose and make a secure online donation through Canada Helps. You can then either request the United Way card or download an insert to include in your card. You can also call United Way directly at 905-602-3650 to make a donation via credit card.

In addition to the mayor’s birthday card, United Way’s Gifts with Purpose program offers Chinese New Year’s celebration cards and Valentine cards, as well as wedding, birthday, graduation, in memoriam, and other holiday and general occasion cards.

ARI Financial has successful campaign

Birthday Card

Rick Farrell (left) and Fred Booth (right) at ARI’s fundraising breakfast last October.

This year ARI Financial Services Inc. in Mississauga had their most successful United Way campaign ever. They increased their participation rate and Leadership donors and raised a total of $38,400. Congratulations ARI!

Raptors support United Way

Save up to 30 per cent off Toronto Raptors tickets while supporting United Way. For a limited time, when you purchase tickets to select Raptors games listed below, a portion of the sales will go directly to United Way’s Community Fund, which invests in programs and services that create hope and build better futures.

To book your tickets today, visit www.raptors.com/ticketpass and enter the special offer code: WAYTOGO. For more information on this great opportunity and more, contact Brennan Kerr at 416 815-6076 or bkerr@mapleleafsports.com.

Select games include:

  • Memphis Grizzlies – Monday, January 24 @ 7:00 p.m.
  • Philadelphia 76ers – Wednesday, January 26 @ 7:00 p.m.
  • Milwaukee Bucks – Friday January 28 @ 7:00 p.m.
  • Minnesota Timberwolves – Friday, February 4 @ 7:00 p.m.
  • San Antonio Spurs – Wednesday, February 9 @ 7:00 p.m.

Register for the marathon early and save

As a Mississauga Marathon charity partner, United Way encourages everyone to get involved in the marathon taking place May 14 and 15. The marathon features race events for people of all abilities, including the full marathon, half marathon, Desjardins General Insurance 10K or 10K student relay, the Corporate/Team Relay, the “Hazel” 5K or the 2K Family Fun Run/Walk.

Support United Way by registering as an individual runner, joining a team or pledging a runner. All pledges donated to United Way through the marathon go directly to our Community Fund, which helps change lives and build better futures. Last year, donors contributed $3,300 to United Way through the marathon.

Registration fees for all marathon events will be increasing February 2, so hurry and register today. The earlier you register, the more you save and the sooner you benefit from outstanding bonus offers. Register before May 2 and get your first name or team name printed on your bib.

For more information on how to register a team or individual for the marathon, or pledge a runner, please visit www.mississaugamarathon.com or contact info@mississaugamarathon.com.


Events
Natalie and Dawson

“Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that I’d ever have to use a food bank,” says Dawson Reid, 55. But when the plant where he worked stopped production, Dawson lost his job.

“I’ve been working since I was 18. But now with the economy being what it is, it’s hard to find a job,” he says.

Dawson takes part-time jobs cleaning and painting and his wife Patricia travels four hours a day by public transit to her factory job. Despite their efforts, they struggle to pay for the bare necessities. After rent and utilities, there isn’t much left. They turn to the Mississauga Food Bank, a United Way-funded agency, to help make ends meet.

“I don’t want our daughter to suffer,” says Dawson as he explains having to choose between either buying groceries or paying for a school trip for 8-year-old Natasha. It’s a grim decision.

“It gets so frustrating working and living from paycheque to paycheque,” says Patricia. “You get so tired but you just have to find a way to go on.”

The Mississauga Food Bank helps people go on. It serves 5,500 people each month and another 4,500 people through its three member food banks. In addition, Foodpath supplies food to 13 school breakfast programs, shelters for abused women and homeless teens, a soup kitchen, two literacy programs and two addiction recovery programs.

Dawson keeps looking for work and copes with life one day at a time. Like so many others, he is hopeful that the economy will bounce back soon. In the meantime, the Food Bank makes the struggle bearable.

“You never really appreciate these services until you really need them,” says Dawson. “I’m grateful to United Way and the Food Bank for being here in our time of need.”


Events

February 4, 2010
Community Achievement Celebration

February 16 - Step Up and Learn: Professional Image workshop for individuals aged 20-35

March 15 - Step Up and Learn: Networking Image workshop for individuals aged 20-35


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February 2011

February 2011
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

Community Achievement Celebration

United Way of Peel Region raises record $13,752,578

On February 4 at the International Centre, more than 600 people cheered and danced as United Way of Peel Region announced that generous donors had contributed an outstanding $13,752,578 to the 2010 campaign. The results exceed the $13.75-million goal set last fall. It is the most ever raised in United Way’s annual campaign, which includes dollars raised in Peel or directed to Peel by donors outside the region.

“It was a tremendously challenging campaign, as the impact of the recession continued to linger in our community,” said 2010 Campaign Chair Barb Leavitt, General Manager of Baxter Canada and Strategic Initiatives Latin America/Canada. “At one point we thought we might miss our target. But our community rallied to our call of ‘United we can!’ and proved that Peel is filled with generous, compassionate individuals and organizations that want to make a deep difference.”

Through the extraordinary support of United Way’s 2010 campaign, donors will continue to change lives and build better futures in our community. Last year more than 420,000 people in Peel received support through services, programs and initiatives funded by United Way.

“It took all of us, united in action, to achieve this great result for our community,” United Way President and CEO Shelley White told the crowd. “We are so grateful for the fantastic response.”

To view photos from the CAC event, click here.

Meghan follows her dreams

Megan and DonnaFor Meghan Crook, it was tough being a kid. She grew up in a single-parent household which she describes as “chaotic”. She didn’t have many friends and she often felt isolated and alone.

“I felt like I was under so much pressure,” she says. “I had bad grades in school and I didn’t feel there was anyone or anywhere I could turn for guidance or support.”

Through a United Way funded agency, at the age of 12, Meghan was matched with a mentor who taught her to manage her money and provided opportunities that helped her build confidence and expand her view of the world.

“When I met Donna, every single aspect of my life changed,” says Meghan, now 21. “She took me so many places and taught me so many things. Through her, I learned to believe in myself and to pursue my dreams.”

With the support of her mentor, Meghan, now 21, has graduated from college and plans to be a police officer. Currently, she volunteers as an in-school mentor to other children who need guidance and support.

“If it wasn’t for United Way and my mentor, I would never have had the courage to go to college and I would not be the confident woman that I am today,” she says.

United Way and the Region of Peel invest in Social Purpose Enterprise

What began as an occasional catering service is now a revenue-generating business thanks to a Social Purpose Enterprise (SPE) grant jointly funded by United Way of Peel Region and the Region of Peel. License to Cook operated by St. Leonard’s Place in Brampton is one of six projects receiving SPE grants totalling $61,600 this year. St Leonard’s Place provides residential care for homeless men with significant employment barriers.

“The grant from United Way of Peel and the Region of Peel has made it possible for License to Cook to take the first steps to becoming a sustainable business,” says St. Leonard’s Place Peel Program Manager Carmine Spadafora. “License to Cook gives purpose, hope and optimism to the homeless in our community. The SPE grant provides an opportunity for them to improve their lives through gainful employment while experiencing self-worth and value by preparing meals that bring joy to others.”

United Way launched its Social Purpose Enterprise granting stream in 2007 as part of its poverty reduction strategy. The Region of Peel recognized the impact of social purpose enterprise and became a funding partner in 2008.

There are two funding opportunities in this program:

  • SPE Technical Assistance grants, totalling $21,600 this year, will assist agencies in exploring the viability of developing an social purpose enterprise
  • SPE Development grants, totalling $40,000 this year, will help existing SPEs to expand their business.

“A social purpose enterprise is a business operated by a non-profit organization to address social needs while also generating revenue,” explains United Way President and CEO Shelley White. “It improves lives by providing employment opportunities and work experience for individuals outside the traditional workforce including single parents, newcomers, and those with mental health issues or physical disabilities.”

In addition to License to Cook, St. Leonard’s Place Peel is receiving a second SPE Development grant of $20,000 to further expand its cleaning company, License to Clean.

Further the following three agencies are receiving SPE Technical Assistance grants: Options Mississauga, The Village Keepers Child and Family Centre and Vita Centre.

To read our full news release click here.

Announcing our Spirit Award winners

United Way of Peel Region announced the recipients of the 2010 Campaign Spirit Awards at its 2010 Community Achievement Celebration held at the International Centre in Mississauga on February 4.

“The Spirit Awards honour inspirational and creative campaigns that demonstrate team spirit while raising funds for United Way,” said United Way President and CEO Shelley White. “Congratulations to all our recipients. Their support helped us raise a total of $13,752,578 to continue funding vital programs and services that families and individuals in our community depend on every day.”

To view our list of Spirit Award winners, click here.
To view photos of the Spirit Awards winners, click here.

Revera Inc.

Revera Inc. received a Best First-Time Campaign Spirit Award. 2010 was the first time in the company’s history that an employee fundraising campaign was held. The initial goal was $5,000 but Revera employees rallied together and surpassed that goal raising $19,589!

Honouring our youth

Emptying her piggy bank to buy lollipops for her classmates is how one generous kindergarten student showed her support for United Way. The students at Fernforest Public school who organized the lollipop sale are one of several groups of young people who received a United Way Youth Spirit award this year. The award honours children and youth who demonstrate fun and creativity while raising funds for United Way.

The Youth Spirit Award program is an initiative of United Way’s Young Leaders Council (YLC), a group of young adults focused on creating a legacy of giving and volunteerism that will strengthen our community.

"As the Chair of the Young Leaders Council, I’d like to congratulate all the Youth Spirit Award winners,” says YLC Chair Monika Platek. “It makes me so proud to see the true essence of community spirit in these young people. The future is bright because we have such passionate young volunteers to draw inspiration from.”

Youth-led campaigns across Peel raised a total of $10,547.89 for United Way this year. The awards will be presented at the schools of the winners.

To view the list of Youth Spirit Award winners and read our news release, click here.

We’re moving

United Way of Peel Region is relocating to the Sussex Centre in Mississauga effective March 25. At our new location, United Way will become part of an innovative concept in human care services — The Community Door. With locations in Brampton and Mississauga currently under development, the Community Door will provide shared space for local agencies to provide accessible, centralized services to individuals and families in Peel.

Our email and phone lines will not be available on March 25, but should be up and running the following business day, Monday, March 28. All phone numbers and email addresses will remain the same.


Events
Robert

When he was 22, Robert Ditchburn lost touch with reality. He was consumed with thoughts that his coworkers were talking about him behind his back and that his employer was trying to harm him.

Alarmed by Robert's behaviour, his father took him to the hospital, where he was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and given medication. Robert had joined the ranks of the 1 in 5 people in Canada who will personally experience a mental illness.

Robert returned to work two years later but relapsed when he stopped taking his medication. After a two-month hospitalization, Robert lost his job and feared for his future. He agonized over how he would get his life back on track.

Enter Destination Café.ca, a social purpose enterprise supported by United Way of Peel Region.

The café, operated by Supportive Housing in Peel, is staffed by mental health consumers and serves fair trade and freshly roasted coffee. Its mission is to support people with mental health issues through employment in a safe and flexible environment that promotes self-confidence and skill building.

Through its Social Purpose Enterprise Fund, United Way tackles a stubborn root of poverty — the challenges in finding and keeping a job faced by people with mental illness, intellectual disabilities or other conditions and situations.

A social worker connected Robert with the café and now, at age 27, he works as the manager of marketing and advertising. He also serves customers and credits the café for building his confidence and providing him with skills to move forward with his life.

“Growing into the business services role, Robert has been tremendous in thinking what is best for the customers, staff and the business,” says Shirley Hannigan, Robert’s job coach and coordinator of the café’s Work Well program. “He understands the product and is amazing at explaining the fair trade, organic coffee business.”

Once a shut-in, living with and dependent on his family, Robert now has meaningful employment, a network of friends and support, and lives independently.

“I’m proud of what Robert’s doing at the café,” says Robert’s father. “It’s given him more confidence and allowed him to live on his own and make his own decisions. He still maintains good contact with his mother and me but we don’t have the every day strain of feeling responsible for him. It’s a good thing.”

Just before becoming ill, Robert had applied to Humber College’s Marketing program. His acceptance came shortly after being diagnosed, so he declined the opportunity. But now he has the confidence and skills to think about one day returning to school and build on his experience at the café.

"I don't think I'd be anywhere close to where I am now if I didn't have the café," he says.


Events

March 15 - Step Up and Learn: Networking Image workshop for individuals aged 20-35

May 14-15 - Mississauga Marathon


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March 2011

March 2011
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

Building community – one neighbourhood at a time

United Way’s Neighbourhood Development strategy supports resident-led initiatives and activities that address neighbourhood issues such as feeling safe, and a sense of belonging. Such projects include the annual Malton Neighbourhood Fesitival and the Mural project which encourages volunteerism, positive interaction and neighbourhood pride among residents. By bringing together residents, agencies and community partners, Peel becomes a better place for all of us.

“United Way invests in empowering residents to work together with a collective voice,” says Community Investment Manager Areeta Bridgemohan. “Once you give people the tools and opportunities to organize and advocate for themselves, they can apply those skills in any situation – and that’s sustainable change.”

When you support United Way, you provide opportunities for residents to connect and be involved in their neighbourhoods, making Peel a safer, better place to live, work and play.

Tremaine has a positive future

Tremaine

Tremaine Garrison and his family moved to McHardy Court when he was 12. At the time, he had few friends, little interest in school and poor grades.

A flyer that came in the mail led Tremaine to a United Way funded agency that provides social and recreational programs for neighbourhood youth. At the agency, Tremaine made friends, received guidance from youth mentors and was able to improve his grades. He soon became a volunteer at the agency and was later hired as a youth leader to mentor others.

“Without United Way funded programs, I may have fallen into the wrong crowd and ended up with a police record which would have limited my career options,” he explains. “The agency opened my eyes to so many opportunities and helped direct me towards a positive future.”

Today, Tremaine, 20, is a college graduate who works as a teacher’s assistant with the Peel District School Board and continues to volunteer as a youth mentor in his community.

Tim Bzowey: Showing support for our community

Tim BzoweyTim Bzowey, Vice President, Property & Casualty - RBC Insurance, is delighted to serve as United Way’s 2011 Campaign Cabinet Chair. He has been a member of United Way’s Campaign Cabinet since 2009 and has a strong belief in volunteerism. He not only believes in supporting our community through dollars, he personally rolls up his sleeves and gives his time.

“I strongly believe companies and individuals have a genuine interest in doing their part,” he says.

Tim has served three consecutive terms as chair of the RBC Insurance workplace campaign while concurrently participating as an active member of the Ontario-wide RBC Charity Trust Campaign Cabinet.

Congratulations Jackie!

On April 5, 2011, Jacqueline Pereira was presented with the Citizenship & Immigration Canada Ontario Volunteer Service Award for 5 years of volunteer service with Spectra Community Support Services. Jackie has been the Receptionist and Office Assistant at United Way of Peel Region for seven years.

The Ontario Volunteer Service Awards honour the thousands of people who generously contribute their time as volunteers across Ontario.

Jackie
Jacqueline Pereira and The Honourable Charles Sousa, Minister of Labour and MPP (Mississauga South)

We have moved

90 Burnhamthorpe RoadUnited Way of Peel Region is now located in the Sussex Centre in Mississauga At our new location, United Way will be part of an innovative concept in human care services — The Community Door. With locations in Brampton and Mississauga currently under development, the Community Door will provide shared space for local agencies to provide accessible, centralized services to individuals and families in Peel.

Our email and phone numbers remain the same. Our new address is 90 Burnhamthorpe Road West, Suite 408, PO Box 58 Mississauga, ON L5B 3C3


Events
Your donation makes an impact

Here are some examples of the difference your donation to the Community Fund makes in neighbourhoods in Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga:

$5 per pay ($260 per year) provides one child with a safe place to go after school for an entire year.

$5 per pay ($260 per year) provides support for 35 seniors to attend a gentle exercise program that enables them to stay physically able to remain living and aging in their own homes.

$10 per pay($520.00 per year) provides a friendly in-home visit or a daily telephone call offering companionship, friendly conversation and a vital safety check to 40 isolated seniors.

$15 per pay ($390 a year) provides breakfast for a student who needs nourishment to maintain concentration, improve social behaviour and ability to learn.

$15 per pay ($390 a year) funds a homework club that provides access to computers, peer support and mentors for children and youth in their community.

$15 per pay ($390 a year) provides weekly leadership opportunities for one youth in a high risk neighbourhood.

$20 per pay ($520 per year) provides 50 hygiene kits to clients living in poverty.

$24 per pay ($624 per year) provides 6 people with an intellectual disability the opportunity to participate in a weekly activity in the community.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) matchs a child with a carefully screened adult mentor to provide friendship and guidance for 1 year.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) provides one-time assistance to 100 immigrant families so that they can settle and begin productive lives in Canada.

$50 per pay ($1,300 per year) enables 400 unemployed newcomers to participate in a Job Search Program.

$56 per pay ($1,456 per year) provides information sessions once a month for one year to newcomers on important topics that will help them make informed decisions about their settlement.

$60 per pay ($1,560 per year) enables 15 women who were victims of abuse and domestic violence to participate in an 8-week support group with their children to enhance their life skills and learn about a wide range of community services.


Events

April 28, 2011 - Free Legal Clinic

May 14-15 - Mississauga Marathon

June 2 - Day of Caring


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April 2011

April 2011 Way to Go!
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

Investing in resilient people

In the middle of the night, a woman awakens her three children. Wearing their pyjamas, the children get into the back seat of a car and their mother drives off into the darkness. Where will they go?

In one year, more than 23,600 women who have been abused, and their children, received shelter, counselling and support from United Way to help them begin new lives free from violence. When you give to United Way, your donations support a network of essential services that assist those in our community who are vulnerable to abuse.

“When someone is affected by abuse, there is a higher risk of isolation, poverty and homelessness,” explains United Way Director of Community Investment Anita Stellinga. “United Way is committed to investing in programs that not only meet these immediate needs but also proactively tackle root causes of these challenging social issues.”

United Way funds a network of programs and services that create a circle of care to break the cycle of violence and abuse. We invest in agencies that provide emergency shelter; counselling for women, children and men; interest free loans to women fleeing abuse; and assistance finding housing and employment.

When you support United Way, you invest in lasting, positive social change that creates resilient people, strong families, and a better community for all of us.

Journey to recovery

Farheen Khan

In 2001 Farheen Khan was sexually assaulted in broad daylight. A man followed her out of an apartment building elevator into a hallway where he first verbally assaulted her with racial slurs. Then, he grabbed her and threw her to the ground, holding her down as he attempted to rip off her hijab.

"I was stunned and terrified," says Farheen. “I remember thinking - this can’t be happening!”

Fortunately Farheen was able to fight off her attacker and escape to safety. After telling her parents about the assault, the family chose not to contact the police. At the time it was Farheen’s parent’s belief that disclosing the assault would stigmatize Farheen and could bring dishonour to the family.

Keeping her feelings bottled up caused Farheen to experience extreme health issues and illness. After suffering in silence for five years, a friend encouraged Farheen to contact the Sexual Assault/Rape Crisis Centre of Peel (SA/RCCP), a United Way Funded agency that provides supportive, recovery counselling for survivors of sexual trauma and violence. Farheen's contact with the agency assisted her in coping with the trauma and moving forward with her life. She later volunteered with SA/RCCP to help others by raising awareness about sexual assault and violence against women.

“Two out of three women in Canada experience sexual violence and less than 10 per cent report it to police,” she explains. “Had I not contacted the SA/RCCP for help, I would have continued suffering emotionally and physically.”

Today, Farheen, 30, feels physically and emotionally healthy. She is employed in an executive position with the SA/RCCP and is a published author. She continues to be an advocate for women and also assists in the fight against poverty in Peel.

Jacqueline feels privileged to volunteer

Jacqueline Fehlner“There is a sense of joy in assisting someone to heal and discover that life is worth living,” says Jacqueline Fehlner.

Jacqueline volunteers her skills as an art therapist at a United Way funded agency, helping those with terminal illness find inner peace and healing through artistic expression.

“In Art therapy, the person is given a visual voice to express feelings and emotions and to tell their story when there are no words” explains Jacqueline. “Art Therapy often helps people work through personal pain and loss.”

Her own pain and loss is what led Jacqueline to help others. More than 20 years ago her son was stillborn. Her overwhelming grief sent her into a deep depression. She was able to find deep inner peace through art and wanted to share this process with others. She returned to school to study and become an Art Therapist.

“I came to realize that I could use my skills as an artist, educator, and therapist to help people heal during a critical time in their lives,” she says.

As a volunteer, Jacqueline feels honoured by those who accept her into their hearts and into their lives.

“Assisting people in their life journey is a privilege,” she says. “There is great joy in seeing someone heal and find peace – and to play a role in that process is extremely rewarding.”

Jacqueline teaches art therapy

Day of Caring™ takes place June 2

Day of CaringRoll up your sleeves and grab a paint brush, broom or rake, and spring into action for our community. Registration for United Way’s spring Day of Caring™, taking place on June 2, is now open.

“By volunteering for Day of Caring™ employees across Peel have an opportunity to play a direct role in community building while experiencing firsthand how their contributions support local United Way funded agencies,” explains United Way President and CEO Shelley White. “Many volunteers participate as a group and find it to be a great team-building experience, as well as personally rewarding.”

Volunteers can register for a variety of projects including painting, yard work and cleanups, computer training and more. Day of Caring™ helps preserve agency resources to ensure maximum funding goes to vital frontline programs and services that hundreds of thousands of men, women and children in our community depend on. United Way’s spring Day of Caring™ is generously sponsored by TD. Paint and related supplies are donated by the Brampton North Lowe's Home Improvement Warehouse. To register online for Day of Caring™ or learn more, click here.

Black Community Advisory Council in action

In support of the United Nations declaration that 2011 be the International Year for People of African Descent, United Way’s Black Community Advisory Council (BCAC) and United Way President and CEO Shelley White collaborated on a letter to our community partners. The letter advises our partners of the declaration, and offers BCAC’s assistance with acknowledging it within their organizations.

The BCAC is one of three councils created by United Way to build and promote inclusion in Peel Region. The Council aims to highlight the assets and contributions of Peel’s Black community, which numbers more than 95,000, as well as identify and address key challenges and gaps in support services.

Since its launch in February 2010, BCAC has engaged in a number of activities and initiatives including: council awareness and recruitment during Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s Citizenship Week; collaborated with the Black Community Action Network in Peel to co-host “Come On People!” – a workshop promoting the collective community working towards social change; and partnered with Nexus Youth Services for its first-ever Black History Month event.

The BCAC is comprised of people from different segments of Peel’s diverse Black community. Council members represent different sectors including business, health, education and the community.

To join the BCAC or learn more, contact Suelyn Knight, Community Outreach Coordinator at 905 602-3617 or sknight@unitedwaypeel.org.


Events
Your donation makes an impact

Here are some examples of the difference your donation to the Community Fund makes in neighbourhoods in Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga:

$5.00 per pay ($130 a year) provides 10 children with two weeks of summer camp activities.

$9 per pay ($234 a year) provides one parent with a 16 hour parenting course, including textbook, which will improve his/her parenting skills and improve his/her relationship with their children.

$10 per pay ($260 a year) provides one child with a safe place to go after school for an entire year.

$10 per pay ($260 a year) will provide a vulnerable child with regular recreational and interactive outings for one year.

$10 per pay ($260 a year)provides 45 youth, aged 13 to 24, with eight workshops to help them develop leadership skills

$12 per pay ($312 a year) enrolls three women who were victims of abuse and domestic violence in an 8-week support group with their children to enhance their life skills and learn about a wide range of community services.

$40 per pay ($1,040 a year) provides one woman with one year of free, confidential 24-hour crisis counselling which includes the development of a plan to escape to safety and how to keep herself and her children safe while living with her abuser.

$40 per pay ($1,040 a year) provides one adult survivor of childhood abuse with counselling and support.

$40 per pay ($1,040 a year) provides a woman who has been abused by her partner with one year of confidential 24-hour crisis counselling so that she and her children can be safe.

$56 per pay ($1,440 a year) provides a four month stay in a shelter for a woman and her three children plus 24-hour, one-to-one and group counselling


Events

May 14-15 - Mississauga Marathon

May 27 - Region of Peel's 2011 Golf Tournament in support of United Way

June 2 - Day of Caring

June 24 - United Way of Peel Region's Annual General Meeting


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May 2011

May 2011 Way to Go!
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

Investing in new beginnings

Canada is a safe haven for newcomers feeling persecution. For others our country provides opportunities for education and a better family life. No matter the reason, adjusting to a new culture, learning a new language, finding housing, employment and daycare can be challenging. Research indicates that the settlement process for newcomers and immigrants can take as long as 10 years.

Peel has the largest and fastest growing immigrant population in Canada. In 2010 your donations to United Way of Peel Region assisted 44,649 newcomers and immigrants by supporting vital settlement and other social programs and services for adults, youth and seniors. United Way invests in agencies that not only help newcomers settle but also provide ongoing programs and services to assist immigrants with issues such as intergenerational conflicts, adjusting to different roles for men and women, as well as maintaining employment and coping with financial difficulties. United Way funds English classes, translation and assessment of foreign credentials, job training through volunteer opportunities, mentorship programs, recreational and social activities for seniors, and culturally appropriate counselling and crisis intervention for youth and their families.

United Way partners with local agencies and collaboratives such as the Peel Newcomer Strategy Group to ensure newcomers and immigrants of all ages and ethnicities are able to fully participate in our society. United Way believes everyone plays a role in creating resilient individuals, strong families and a thriving community.

A new beginning for Shirley and Chan

Shirley and Chan

When Shirley, 60 and her husband Chan, 74, moved to Peel to be closer to their grandchildren, it was a new beginning. They were excited to share in their grandchildrens' lives but they had no friends or social activities outside of the family.

“We enjoyed spending time with our children and grandchildren but we also wanted to meet and socialize with people our own age,” says Shirley.

The couple reached out to CareFirst, a United Way funded agency that assists seniors in living healthy, active, independent lives. At CareFirst the couple enjoy educational workshops, Karaoake and Tai Chi.

“If we didn’t have these activities to look forward to, life would be boring,” says Shirley. “Now we have new friends, and we are continuing to learn and grow as people.”

Volunteering led to fulltime work

Milena RuizMilena Ruiz knows what it is like to leave everything familiar behind and start over. She and her husband were forced to flee their birth country with nothing but the clothes on their backs. In 2009 the couple arrived in Peel with their two young children. They were eager to build a new life for their family.

Milena’s husband was able to start a business. Milena’s lack of Canadian job experience made it difficult for her to find employment. She began volunteering with Catholic Cross Cultural Services, a United Way funded agency that assists newcomers and immigrants to settle successfully in Peel.

"As a newcomer I needed to volunteer in order to gain work experience," says Milena. " I volunteered to help other newcomers who were going through the same challenges and issues I went through. I wanted to let them know that they were not alone and that things would be okay.”

As a volunteer with Catholic Cross Cultural Services, Milena was a friendly face and confidant for other newcomers who wanted to share their feelings. Milena also translated legal documents and provided administrate support. Eventually her hard work paid off and she got a job as a receptionist with a multinational company.

“Being able to volunteer was very rewarding for me. I enjoyed helping people and it gave me the Canadian work experience I needed to find a job,“ she says. "Now I am contributing to my family and setting a good example for my children.”

United Way and the Region of Peel invest in neighbourhoods

The Palgrave Community Kitchen (PCK) in the town of Caledon recently received $26,500 to develop a community garden and an herb garden, purchase a commercial stove and hire a community engagement worker. PCK aims to be a social hub and learning space that will teach the value of local foods and contribute to the health and nutrition of local residents.

It is one of 13 projects that received a Neighbourhood Development grant from United Way and the Region of Peel. The project grants, totalling $272,000, will fund resident-led projects across Peel including a community festival, a block party, a neighbourhood council, a seniors’ exercise program and youth leadership activities.

“Neigbourhood Development grants are part of United Way’s Neighbourhood Development strategy which launched in 2007,” explains United Way President and CEO Shelley White. “The grants fund projects that provide opportunities for residents to work with community agencies to improve the quality of life in their neighbourhoods. Research shows that when residents are invested in their communities, neighbourhoods are safer, healthier and more productive.”

In addition to the Palgrave Community Kitchen, the following projects are receiving Neighbourhood Development grants for the first time: The Malton Film & Digital Media Community Engagement Project, The Multicultural Inter-Agency Group of Peel, The University of Toronto Mississauga.

The following projects are receiving a renewal of their Neighbourhood Development grant: Caledon Seniors Group, The Boys and Girls Club of Peel, Clarkson Community at Peace The Malton Community Festival and The Village Keepers, Volunteer MBC.

To read our full news release, click here.

Chinese Advisory Council Assists the Community

United Way’s Chinese Advisory Council (CAC) in collaboration with Mississauga Legal Services, the Peel Chinese Community Service Hub and its partners, recently organized a free legal clinic in English and Mandarin. The clinic featured educational seminars on issues such as tenant law, immigration law, consumer rights and legal aid services in Peel.

The Chinese Advisory Council is comprised of volunteers from local agencies, business and the Chinese community who help create a deeper understanding of the needs and challenges of Peel’s Chinese community and make recommendations to address these needs. The CAC is one of three councils established by United Way to strengthen the voice of diverse communities and promote inclusion in Peel Region.

Since its launch in 2006, the CAC has provided greater access to programs and services for Peel’s Chinese community, which numbers more than 40,000. In 2008, the Council released a report, The Needs and Challenges of the Chinese Community in Peel Region. The Peel Chinese Community Service Hub, which opened in 2010, was a direct result of one of the recommendations from the report.

To join or learn more about the CAC contact Community Outreach Coordinator Jenny Qin at 905-602-3628 or jqin@unitedwaypeel.org.

Partnering to Create a Welcoming Community

Did you know? Recent immigrants in Peel Region are two-and-a-half times more likely to live in poverty than their Canadian-born counterparts.

Employment, poverty, social inclusion, housing and health are some of the major hurdles facing new immigrants. In 2006, United Way and the Region of Peel established the Peel Newcomer Strategy Group (PNSG) to develop a collaborative and comprehensive strategy for the successful integration of newcomers in Peel.

To develop a coordinated strategy, PNSG conducted research, consultation and analysis to produce a report titled, Newcomer Settlement and Inclusion in Peel: Building on Existing Assets. The report, released June 2010 outlines key challenges and recommendations for enhanced services.

Recommendations include increased access to settlement and social programs and services; and the establishment of an Employer leadership or advisory council to promote newcomer and immigrant job skills.

United Way and PNSG are committed to enhancing settlement and social programs and services to ensure successful inclusion of all newcomers and immigrants into all aspects of our community.


Events
Your donation makes an impact

Here are some examples of the difference your donation to the Community Fund makes to newcomers in Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga:

$5 per pay ($130 per year) will provide 90 new immigrants with group orientation information on Canadian laws concerning housing, employment and parenting.

$10 per pay ($260 per year) provides support counseling to 26 immigrant families to help them overcome barriers to effective integration into Canadian society.

$14 per pay ($364 per year) provides a newcomer with job search workshops so that he or she can secure the gainful employment necessary to support their family.

$20 per pay ($520 per year) provides 52 families with vital information on community services to help them with their initial settlement in Brampton.

$25 per pay ($650 per year) will enable over 200 unemployed newcomers to participate in the in a Job Search Program.

$30 per pay ($780 per year) provides materials for a weekly volunteer facilitated English conversation group so that newcomer seniors can practice speaking English in day-to-day situations.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) will provide one-time assistance to over 100 immigrant families to help them settle and begin productive lives in Canada.

$56 per pay ($1,456 per year) provides monthly information sessions for one year to newcomers on important topics that will help them make informed decisions about their settlement.


Events

June 2 - Day of Caring sponsored by TD Canada Trust

June 14 - Building Bridges across Neighbourhoods

June 15 - Employee Campaign Chair Workshop

June 24 - United Way of Peel Region's Annual General Meeting sponsored by
Baxter

June 29 - Employee Campaign Chair Workshop

Sept. 13 - Employee Campaign Chair Workshop

Sept. 20 - Employee Campaign Chair Workshop for Non-profit organizations

Oct. 29 - Region of Peel's Run, Walk and Roll 5K


© 2011 United Way of Peel Region
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June 2011

June 2011
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

Debbie blossoms

DebbieDebbie Riley, 50, has an intellectual disability that makes it difficult for her to secure and maintain employment.

A support worker referred her to Options Mississauga, a Social Purpose Enterprise initiative supported through a United Way grant. A Social Purpose Enterprise is a business operated by a non-profit organization to address social needs while also generating income. Through employment with Options Mississauga, Debbie is gaining work experience and earning a paycheque. She is also developing social skills by interacting with coworkers as well as customers.

Debbie’s mother Judy says Debbie has become more confident and independent since working at Options Mississauga.

“Being able to hold down a job and earn her own money has been wonderful for Debbie,” says Judy. “It has helped her blossom socially and grow as a person.”

Investing in quality of life

Group of peopleWhen Bruce’s world went dark at 33, a United Way funded agency helped him adjust to his loss of sight and learn to function independently. When baby James had his leg amputated, a United Way funded agency provided his family with resources, counselling and emotional support. When Debbie, who was born with an intellectual disability, required assistance securing and maintaining employment, a company supported through a United Way Social Purpose Enterprise grant, provided job training and employment in a supportive environment.

Approximately 171,030 people living in Peel, (14.8 per cent of Peel’s population) have reported living with either a visible or non-visible disability that impacts their ability to function daily. Last year your donations to United Way enabled 24,926 adults, children and youth with disabilities to live independently, gain needed employment skills and stay engaged in the community.

Living with a disability can be challenging to both the disabled individual and their family. United Way invests in respite for care givers, counselling, job training and employment, life skills, and social and recreational programs to help improve the quality of life for individuals living with disabilities and their families.

“United Way believes in providing opportunities that help create an inclusive community where everyone can participate and contribute,” says United Way President and CEO Shelley White. “Your donations strengthen families, help children and youth reach their full potential and create vibrant communities where everyone thrives.”

Volunteering to give back

Jessica Hogg21 year old Jessica Hogg has a learning disability that makes focusing on tasks difficult. The March of Dimes employment services program, a United Way funded agency, provided Jessica with strategies to deal with her disability. She also gained confidence and learned to believe in herself. She recently graduated from college with an Addictions and Community Services Worker diploma.

And that’s why now, she volunteers with March of Dimes supporting others with disabilities to conquer employment barriers and reach their full potential.

The Employment Services program assists people with disabilities to find and maintain employment by providing supportive services including job counselling, resume and interviewing skills and job placements.

“I just want to give back,” says Jessica “Because of my own challenges, I understand what our clients are going through, and I find it very rewarding to be able to help them.”

Employees spend a Day of Caring for United Way

Day of Caring pictures220 Peel employees from 22 companies located in Peel Region didn’t show up for work June 2. Instead, they gave their time and talents to 20 United Way funded agencies participating in this year’s Day of Caring.

Day of Caring is a partnership between United Way of Peel Region, United Way-funded agencies, and workplaces/employee groups who want to provide a ‘hands-on’ day to complete a much-needed project or conduct a special initiative for charitable or non-profit organizations.

Day of Caring demonstrates the impact of volunteers in our community, and allows donors to experience first-hand the services provided by United Way of Peel Region and their agency.

Shelley White, President and CEO of United Way of Peel Region acknowledged the commitment of the volunteers. “We are sincerely grateful to the 22 companies and the 220 employees who participated in our spring Day of Caring. I am confident their experience will remain with them for a long time. They are more aware of United Way’s community impact and how their donation makes a difference in the lives of so many of our residents.”

Employees from the following companies participated:
ARI Financial Services Inc., Baxter Corporation, Best Buy, BMO, Citrix Systems, City of Mississauga, Davis & Henderson, E.I. duPont Canada Company, Franklin Templeton, Ingram Micro Inc., Intact Insurance Company, Medtronic of Canada Limited, Ministry of Community and Social Services, Montship Inc., PCL Constructors Canada Inc., PepsiCo Foods Canada, Pratt and Whitney Canada, Regional Municipality of Peel, Ricoh Canada Inc., TD Canada Trust, Tech Data Canada Inc., and UPS.

The following agencies participated:
African Community Services of Peel, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Peel, Caledon Dufferin Victim Services, Caledon Community Services, Caledon Meals on Wheels, Catholic Family Services of Peel – Dufferin, CNIB, Family Education Centre, India Rainbow Community Services of Peel, Interim Place, John Howard Society of Peel, Nexus Youth, Ontario March of Dimes, Our Place Peel, Peach Ranch, Peel HIV/AIDS Network, Peel Senior Link, Rapport Youth & Family Services, Vita Centre and YMCA – GTA.

To read our full news release click here.
To view Day of Caring photos click here.

United Way says Thanks a Million to GE Canada and PepsiCo Canada

United Way of Peel Region said thanks a million – again – to two Mississauga-based corporations -- GE Canada and PepsiCo Canada -- for raising $1 million or more in 2010 for United Ways across the country. The annual Thanks a Million Awards are given by United Way of Canada-Centraide Canada to corporations, employers and labour organizations that have worked with their employees or members to raise $1 million or more during a campaign year.

This is the second time PepsiCo Canada received the Thanks a Million Award; the fourth time for GE Canada.

The awards were presented June 24 at United Way of Peel Region’s annual general meeting. 2010 Campaign Chair, Barbara Leavitt, told the audience of close to 200 that PepsiCo’s campaign was supported with “a high degree of commitment and enthusiasm from the leadership team and employee campaign committee. PepsiCo initiated a Leadership Challenge Grant of $50,000 from PepsiCo Foods and another $50,000 from PepsiCo Beverage. They made an additional corporate gift from PepsiCo Beverages of $50,000. PepsiCo Canada – including beverages and foods – provided a $1 for $1 match for employee pledges.”

PepsiCo also volunteers with United way – former president of PepsiCo beverage, Linda Kuga Pikulin is now serving on United Way of Peel Region’s Board of Directors and Anne-Marie Renaud, vice president of operations at PepsiCo Foods Canada is a new member of UWPR’s campaign cabinet.

Leavitt also announced that GE Canada won the award for the fourth consecutive year. She said “GE’s United Way theme to engage staff was GE and United Way: Healthy Lives, Healthy Community. Each GE business had a United Way champion whose job was to build spirit and enthusiasm for the campaign and actively promote face to face canvassing. The GE foundation provided a 50 cent on the dollar match on employee, retiree and special event gifts. They ran a national retiree campaign. As a result of their efforts GE had a 33% increase in donors over the previous year from 3,130 donors in 2009 to 4,184 donors in 2010.”

An additional 46 Thanks a Million winners who have locations in our community, but head offices elsewhere, were also acknowledged.

To view all our Thanks a Million winners and read our full news release, click here.

The President of Baxter Corporation elected as United Way of Peel Region’s new Board chair

Barb LeavittAt the Board of Director’s meeting immediately following the annual meeting June 24, Barbara Leavitt, was elected Board Chair. She has been President of Baxter Corporation since 2002. Ms. Leavitt has over 20 years of extensive leadership experience in the Canadian healthcare industry and is directly responsible for Baxter's commercial operations in Canada.

In addition to her work with United Way, Ms. Leavitt is actively involved at the Board level with MEDEC, (2011 -2012 Board Chair for the national medical technology association) and Catalyst (Corporate Advisory Board) and was recently certified as a Corporate Director by the Institute of Corporate Directors, Toronto. She was United Way of Peel Region's Campaign Cabinet Chair for 2010 and Vice Chair of the Board of Directors in 2010.

“I am honoured to be elected as chair of the Board of Directors,” Ms. Leavitt said. “I am very proud of the work of United Way of Peel Region and the difference we make in the lives of individuals and families in our community. United Way of Peel Region with the support of our business partners, individual donors and many volunteers improves lives, strengthens neighbourhoods and makes our community great for everyone.”

Other officers elected were Shaila Mehta, partner at Deloitte, as Vice Chair; Snigdha Malik, Branch Manager at Advent Financial Group, as Secretary; and as Treasurer, Norma Trim, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer and Commissioner of Corporate Affairs with the Region of Peel.

The following individuals were elected to the Board of Directors for their first three-year term:

JUDY BURNS joined Cancer Care Ontario (CCO) in November, 2006. CCO is the provincial agency responsible for guiding cancer care delivery in the province.

LINDA KUGA PIKULIN is the former President of Pepsico Beverages Canada, a position she was appointed to in 2010.

SADAF PARVAIS is a champion of the inclusiveness vision at Ernst & Young.

JOANNE PATTISON joined the Region of Peel staff in 1984 and is currently the Supervisor of Performance Measurement for the Human Services Department.

JOHN RUSSO is a partner at Pallett Valo LLP. John practices in the area of commercial litigation, with a particular focus on contractual disputes, creditor remedies, asset recovery, enforcement of security, and insolvency.

MOTILALL SARJOO (SARJ) is employed by Chrysler Canada at the Brampton Assembly Plant, home of the Dodge Charger, Dodge Challenger and the Chrysler 300C.

RAJ VENKATARAMAN, who is a Corporate Lending and risk management professional at GE Capital.

In addition to the newly elected officers, the following individuals are continuing as Board members: Barb Leavitt, Snigdha Malik, Louroz Mercader, Geovanni Mosquera, Carl Oxholm, Joseph Palumbo, Serge Rochette, Narendra Shah, Norma Trim.

Close to 200 volunteers, businesspersons, donors and staff from the United Way of Peel Region welcomed the new members of the Board of Directors at the UWPR’s Annual General Meeting. The event held at The Garden in Brampton was sponsored by Baxter Corporation.

To read our full news release click here.

Making a difference by sponsoring a Loaned Representative

What do The City of Mississauga, Edward Jones, GE Canada, Peel Regional Police Service, The Pepsi Bottling Group and the Regional Municipality of Peel have in common? They are organizations that have helped our community by sponsoring a Loaned Representative (LR) to work with United Way during our public fundraising campaign. An Loaned Representative is an enthusiastic individual who is loaned or sponsored by a business, corporation or organization to participate in a unique professional development opportunity. They work alongside United Way staff, developing fundraising, leadership, project management, public speaking and teamwork skills. As part of a supportive and dynamic team, they will implement fundraising strategies and maintain ongoing relationships with hundreds of companies and organizations.

After completing the 16-week Loaned Representative Program, LRs return to their workplace energized with new skills, confidence, contacts, and a commitment to our community. The LR program runs from late August to December and helps United Way reach fundraising goals by keeping our costs low, and maximizing the impact of donor dollars in our community.

To learn more about sponsoring a Loaned Representative or how to become a Loaned Representative, contact Susan Kulkarni at 905-602-3642 or skulkarni@unitedwaypeel.org.

Events
Your donation makes an impact

Here are some examples of the difference your donation to the Community Fund makes to people with disabilities in Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga:

$4 per pay ($104 per year) supports a person with an intellectual disability to try an activity for the first time.

$4 per pay ($104 per year) provides an inhaler to a child living with asthma, allowing them to participate in sports activities.

$5 per pay ($130 per year) provides 10 hours of computer skills training to a student who is struggling with writing skills

$10 per pay ($260) allows 2 children to participate in a 10 week social skills training program to help in the development of appropriate social skills

$17 per pay ($442 per year) will provide tutor training to 20 people so that they can develop the literacy skills they need on the job.

$24 per pay ($624 per year) allows 6 people with an intellectual disability the opportunity to participate in a weekly activity in the community.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) provides 10 families the opportunity to spend 4 to 6 hours per week with other family members while their son or daughter, who has an intellectual disability, is supported to enjoy an activity in the community.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) provides a walker and special orthopaedic shoes to help one senior maintain mobility and stay active.

$50 per pay ($1,300) provides 30 hours of resource facilitation, preparing an adult or family to better advocate for themselves within the school system and the community.

$50 per pay ($1,300 per year) provides updated manuals and workshop training materials for specialty classes including computer basics, food handling and drivers’ license G1.

Upcoming Events

July 5 -Community Detour

Sept. 13 - Employee Campaign Chair Workshop

Sept. 20 - Employee Campaign Chair Workshop for Non-profit organizations

Sept. 23 - Campaign Kick-off

Sept. 23 - Day of Caringsponsored by TD Canada Trust

Sept. 28 -Community Detour

Oct. 5 - Community Detour

Oct. 29 - Region of Peel's Run, Walk and Roll 5K

Feb. 9 - Community Achievement Celebration


United we can create more vibrant communities
United we can have strong families
United we can be resilient

© 2011 United Way of Peel Region
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July 2011

http://www.unitedwaypeel.org/pics/2011/waytogo/July 2011
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

Supporting seniors

Geraldine, 67 is accessing email and downloading recipes from her computer. Tong, 83, and his wife Irene, 76, are having the time of their lives going on social outings, making new friends and taking Tai Chai. Brian lost his voice after suffering a stroke but now sings at weekly karaoke sessions. Last year your donations to United Way helped enhance the quality of life for more than a thousand seniors in our community.

United Way provides a network of support to seniors from various walks of life and circumstances including those who are self-sufficient, disabled, newcomers, or those vulnerable to abuse or poverty. United Way is committed to reducing isolation by providing opportunities for inclusion among Peel’s growing, diverse senior population. Your donations fund social, recreational and wellness programs such as congregate dinning, exercise programs, social outings and educational workshops that assist seniors to be healthy and live independently. Together, we are creating communities where no one is behind, left out, or left on their own and everyone is cared for, connected and included.

Keeping seniors social

AnnieA trip to the local coffee shop is the highlight of Annie Larson’s week. The 98-year-old widow who is legally blind and hearing impaired lives alone and is not able to get out on her own. Thanks to a United Way funded program, she receives weekly visits from Judy Johnson, a Caledon Volunteer Visitor. The Volunteer Visitor program, funded by United Way, assesses seniors’ needs and matches them with a volunteer who provides friendship and support during weekly visits.

Judith has been a Volunteer Visitor for more than 21 years and has been visiting Annie for almost 10. She feels volunteerism in general is important but saw a need to support seniors in her community.

“I think the elderly are sometimes neglected and therefore vulnerable to loneliness and isolation,” she explains. “A simple visit to talk and listen can truly brighten a senior’s day.”

During their weekly visits the friends often go for lunch or sometimes just sit in and share stories over tea.

“I’d be lost without her,” says Annie about volunteer and friend Judith. “She is a fabulous friend and a great support. We have so much fun together.”

United Way and the Region of Peel offer neighbourhood development grants

United Way of Peel Region and the Region of Peel are jointly offering grants of up to $15,000 to resident groups and charities interested in improving the quality of neighbourhood life in Peel. The Neighbourhood Development grants totalling $300,000 aim to give Peel residents an opportunity to partner with local agencies and businesses to create resident-led projects that enhance the quality of neighbourhood life.

The Neighbourhood Development grants were launched in 2008 as part of United Way’s poverty reduction strategy. Previous grant recipients include a park beautification project that brought together volunteers, youth and seniors to revitalize a community park; a community kitchen that brought the community together with a number of different activities; a resident council comprised of concerned residents hoping to improve the neighbourhood conditions for their families; and a neighbourhood festival that brings residents together and promotes community pride and unity.

“These grants are empowering residents to work together to strengthen their neighbourhoods in ways that create hope and opportunity,” says Anita Stellinga, United Way’s Vice-President of Community Investment. “Research has proven that a neighbourhood that works together is safer, healthier and more productive.”

Interested applicants are encouraged to attend one of the following information sessions:

  • Thursday, August 4, 2011 from 6 to 8 pm at Party Room, 3590 Colonial Drive, Mississauga;
  • Tuesday, August 16, 2011 from 10 am to 12 pm at 25 Stationview Place, Bolton-Party Room, Bolton;
  • Thursday, August 18, 2011 from 7 to 9 pm at Malton Community Centre, 3540 Morning Star Drive, Mississauga;
  • Wednesday, August 24, 2011 from 1:30 to 3:30 pm at Fletcher’s View Party Room, 4 Sir Lou Drive, Brampton

To RSVP for one of the information sessions please contact Jyoti Shukla, Associate, Community Investment at jshukla@unitedwaypeel.org or 905-602-3619. For more information about this funding opportunity and how to receive an application, please contact Areeta Bridgemohan, Manager, Community Investment at 905 602-3630 or abridgemohan@unitedwaypeel.org or Charmayne Brown, Supervisor, Community Development, at 647-248-0569 or charmayne.brown@peelregion.ca.

Volunteering keeps Don active

DonTwice a week, you can find Don Evan, 80, working out with the SMILE (Simple movement to Enhance Independent Living for the Elderly) program. SMILE, funded by United Way, is a gentle exercise program that helps seniors live healthy, social independent lives.

Since joining the program five years ago, Don has lost 30 pounds and has increased his flexibility and energy levels. In addition to his own workouts, Don volunteers to visit housebound seniors and exercise with them in their homes.

“I truly enjoy helping others stay fit,” he says. “Exercise has improved my life so much, I want to share my good health by volunteering to help others.”

Don finds volunteering extremely rewarding both mentally and physically.

“Volunteering keeps me feeling healthy and active,” says Don. “It also keeps me young!”

Annual Campaign Kicks off September 23

Join United Way on September 23, at the Hershey Centre Sports Zone, from 8 to 9:30 a.m. as we kick-off our annual public campaign and announce our 2011 fundraising goal. Breakfast is provided and everyone is welcome.

This year’s theme “United We Can” inspires unity and teamwork and emphasizes that by working together, we can and will make a difference. To further demonstrated the power of teamwork, following Kick-off, neighbourhood development volunteer activities will take place from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

United Way’s Kick-off is sponsored by RBC Insurance. For information about sponsorship opportunities contact Lin Ferguson at 905-602-3625 or lferguson@unitedwaypeel.org.


Events
Your donation makes an impact

Here are some examples of the difference your donation to the Community Fund makes to seniors in Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga:

$1 per pay ($26 per year) provides a health education workshop for 30 seniors to assist them in making healthy choices that will enhance their quality of life.

$5 per pay ($130 per year) provides a Tai Chi class for 20 seniors to keep them active and engaged with the community.

$5 per pay ($130 per year) allows 18 seniors to attend a gentle exercise program that enables them to stay physically able to remain living and aging in their own homes.

$10 per pay ($260 per year) provides a friendly in-home visit offering companionship, friendly conversation and a vital safety check for 20 isolated seniors.

$16 per pay ($416 per year) provides support, options and relief for a vulnerable senior experiencing abuse.

$20 per pay ($520 per year) enables 100 seniors living rurally and isolated to attend a social lunch, so that they have companionship and an opportunity to re-new relationships with friends and neighbours.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) supplies a senior with a walker allowing them to be mobile and enhances their independence.

$100 per pay (2,600 per year) provides 8 seniors with weekly workshops to reduce isolation and loneliness in their lives.

Upcoming Events

Aug. 4 - Neighbourhood Development Grant Information Session

Aug. 16 - Neighbourhood Development Grant Information Session

Aug. 18 - Neighbourhood Development Grant Information Session

Aug. 24 - Neighbourhood Development Grant Information Session

Sept. 13 - Employee Campaign Chair Workshop

Sept. 20 - Employee Campaign Chair Workshop for Non-profit organizations

Sept. 23 - Campaign Kick-off
sponsored by

RBC Insurance

Sept. 23 - Day of Caringsponsored by TD Canada Trust

Sept. 28 -Community Detour

Oct. 5 - Community Detour

Oct. 29 - Region of Peel's Run, Walk and Roll 5K

Feb. 9 - Community Achievement Celebration


United we can create more vibrant communities
United we can have strong families
United we can be resilient

© 2011 United Way of Peel Region
subscribe | unsubscribe | print | contact

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August 2011

August 2011
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

Helping families stay strong

Raising three young children often left Karla, exhausted, frustrated and overwhelmed. These feelings affected her relationship with her husband, Rodney, and cast a cloud over their family life. A United Way of Peel Region-funded program provided parenting classes that helped Karla and Rodney understand each other and their children. It provided them with tools and coping skills for them to work through challenges. Ultimately their family grew stronger.

United Way-funded agencies have enhanced the lives of thousands of families and children. Your donations help increase parenting knowledge and provide skills and resources; assist children in preschool and elementary school years; build leadership skills and confidence in youth; and enhance family relationships.

“Our goal is for all individuals and families in Peel to become resilient and thrive within a vibrant community,” says United Way’s Vice-President of Community Investment Anita Stellinga. “Our investment strategy focuses on supporting individuals, families and neighbourhoods to cope with challenges and overcome them.”

Your donations help United Way champion social change by funding workshops, counselling, violence prevention, homework and breakfast clubs, recreational and educational programs, and collaboratives that together provide a solid human care network that helps keep families strong throughout our community.

2011 Campaign kicks off in Super Bowl style

2011 Kick-offWant to be motivated and inspired? Then join the team. Join Team United and attend United Way of Peel Region’s 2011 campaign “Kick-off” event on September 23 at the Hershey Centre SportsZone, from 8 to 9:30 a.m.

The annual Kick-off marks the beginning of United Way’s public fundraising campaign and the announcement of our 2011 campaign goal. The free, Super Bowl-themed event begins with breakfast upon arrival, followed by opening ceremonies, including entertainment, inspirational speeches and remarks, and a demonstration of United Way’s community impact using the strategic game of football.

After Kick-off, attendees have the opportunity to participate in neighbourhood development volunteer activities from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Volunteer activities include litter cleanups, gardening and tree planting. Volunteer projects are both personally rewarding and a great team-building exercise for employees and community groups.

Click here to register online before the deadline of September 16.
For further information, contact Jacqueline Pereira at 905-602-3650 or jpereira@unitedwaypeel.org.

United Way’s Kick-off is sponsored by

RBC Insurance

Moms receive guidance

Caterina and her three childrenWhen Catarina, mother of three, was pregnant with her first child, she had only been in Canada for one year and had no friends or family in the area she could turn to for support.

"As a new mom, I didn't know what to expect and I didn't feel there was anyone who could give me advice or guidance," she says.

Catarina heard about a United Way-funded parenting program at the Vita Centre and decided to check it out.

"I learned so much," she says. "The workshops were awesome and speakers were inspiring.”

During her third pregnancy the program connected Catarina with volunteer Doula, Nelia daAmaral. A Doula plays a supportive role to a woman and her partner during the birth process.

“Nelia was a wonderful Doula,” says Catarina. “When I went into labour, my husband had to stay home with our other children and having the Doula with me made me feel so supported.”

Catarina continues attending the parenting program with her three young sons. She is planning to become a Doula to help other moms and highly recommends the parenting program to all women.

“It’s a great place for women to get together and share their feelings and support each other,” she explains. "I am so grateful for all that I have learned and I am happy to be able to pass on my knowledge and experience to other new moms."

To learn more about the Vita Centre, click here.

Volunteering runs in the family

Rosa and NatalieRosa Bonifacio comes from a family of givers. She grew up in a community where everyone looked out for their neighbours and took time to help each other.

"It was just what you did," she says. "My parents instilled in me the importance of giving back and now I do the same with my kids."

Rosa is the mother of four children. Over 20 years ago, when her children were small, she often visited the Caledon Parent-Child Centre, a United Way-funded agency. The Caledon Parent/Child Centre provides support, resources and education that strengthen families and promote positive development of children.

"With four children, it was sometimes difficult to have quality time out of the house," says Rosa. "The Centre provided a supportive environment where I could have fun with my children and also meet other moms like myself."

As her children got older, Rosa stayed connected with the Centre as a volunteer.

"The Centre was such a blessing to me," she says. "It makes my heart feel good to give back to them and to help support our community."

Following the family tradition of giving back, Rosa's daughter, Natalie, 21, also volunteers at the Centre, and is currently a Children’s Program Assistant.

"I loved coming to the Centre so much as a child that I started volunteering when I was 12," says Natalie.

Rosa and her husband, Michael, have taught their children that giving with no strings attached is both satisfying and rewarding.

"I grew up watching my mom volunteer and she has always encouraged us kids to give back to the community," says Natalie.

Rosa believes there are some needs that money just can't fill. "Some things need the human touch," she says.

To learn more about Caledon Parent/Child Centre, click here.

Unity in Diversity Gala supports United Way

Black Community Advisory CouncilEnjoy an elegant evening with Liberty Sliver, Grammy and Juno award winner, and Trey Anthony, writer and producer of the hit play ‘da Kink in my hair, at the Unity in Diversity Gala fundraiser, on September 24, at Hilton Toronto Hotel and Suites, 5875 Airport Road in Mississauga. Guests will also be treated to Afro-centric drumming beats and keynote speaker Dr. Sheldon Taylor, Professor of African Canadian Studies at the University of Toronto.

The gala is hosted by United Way of Peel Region’s Black Community Advisory Council. A cocktail reception begins at 5:30 p.m., followed by dinner, entertainment and dancing at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $70 per person and $650 for a table of 10.
All funds raised through the gala support United Way of Peel Region’s Community Fund which helps sustain a vital network of 92 programs and 52 agencies that assist hundreds of thousands of people in our community.

To reserve your seat for this very entertaining evening click here.

To learn more about United Way’s Community Advisory Councils click here.

New report calls for Peel’s fair share

Portraits of Peel 2011: A Community Left BehindUnited Way of Peel Region, in partnership with leading organizations in Peel Region released a report on August 11, describing a landscape where vulnerable populations are falling behind because provincial and federal funding has not kept pace with community needs.

Portraits of Peel 2011: A Community Left Behind, is the second report co-authored by United Way of Peel Region, Social Planning Council of Peel, Fair Share Peel Task Force, and the Region of Peel. The 2005 report Portraits of Peel: Facing the Facts, also identified funding challenges for Peel's service providers.

Peel's funding challenges
Portraits of Peel extracts data from a number of sources to outline the current funding challenges for the Region's community health and human services providers and the challenges that residents of Peel face in accessing these services. Data from the Peel Fair Share Task Force reveals that Peel residents receive only a little more than half the support other Ontarians receive on a per capita basis. For example:

  • Peel receives $354 per capita for child care services – the provincial average* is $815
  • Peel receives $62 per capita for developmental services - the provincial average* is $133
  • Peel receives less than one-third of the funding other Ontario municipalities receive for adult services
  • Peel families have the longest wait times for social housing of any Ontario municipality.

*2008-2009, without GTA/905 Regions

Collaborations help service providers cope
"The community has been very solution-focused in the face of these challenges. Local governments, non-profits, community health and human service providers have made extraordinary efforts to both collaborate and coordinate their work to stretch resources. This includes the 2007 development of a community Investment Strategy aimed at prioritizing community needs in ways that have the greatest impact," said United Way of Peel Region CEO Shelley White.

Regional Chair, Emil Kolb, echoed White's remarks by saying "Unfortunately, some issues, like child poverty – are growing and are taking a harsh toll on the most vulnerable in our community." He pointed to the case studies found in the report as demonstrating how the right supports can dramatically change lives. Portraits of Peel puts a human face to the statistics", he said.

The populations described in Portraits of Peel are varied, ranging from children to newcomers but they share a common risk of being left behind if the services they require are delayed or absent.

To download a copy of the 2011 edition of Portraits of Peel, click here.
Citizens can contribute to Share's election Advocacy Campaign – Act Now for Peel – aimed at involving residents in advocating for equal access to social and community health services– especially for Peel. For more information, visit www.fairsharetaskforce.ca.

Gas up for our community

Esso Gift CardGet your $25 Esso United Way Gift card and support our community as well as United Ways across Canada. For every gift card purchased, Imperial Oil donates $2 to United Way -- Centraide.

The limited-edition Esso Gift Card can be used to purchase all Esso products and services and is available at more than 600 Esso-branded retail sites across Canada or online at www.myessogiftcard.ca.

The Esso Gift Card is available through November 30, 2011, while quantities last, so get yours today.

Apply for Youth in Action Grants

If you are between the ages of 14 and 24 and want to make a positive impact in Peel Region – Youth in Action grants are for you! United Way of Peel Region and the Region of Peel are offering one-time grants of up to $2,000 to youth led-projects in Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga. A total of $20,000 is available.

Previous grant recipients include a project that connected youth and seniors so that they could learn from each other; urban/hip hop dance lessons to teach youth in the local community how to dance; an art instillation project designed to illustrate how racism and homophobia intersect; and a series of weekly workshops that used cooking to draw youth away from violence.

To receive a grant, applicants must work with an eligible sponsoring organization. The sponsoring organization must be a registered charity based in, or operating, in Peel.

All projects should have a positive impact on local residents and neighbourhoods, improving the quality of community life.

The deadline for all applications is Friday September 30, 2011.

Interested applicants are encouraged to attend one of the following information sessions:

  • Tuesday, September 13, 2011 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Region of Peel Building, 10 Peel Centre Drive, Room 985B, Brampton;
  • Wednesday, September 14, 2011 from 6 to 7 p.m. at Caledon Centre for Recreation and Wellness,14111 Regional Road 50 N (Hwy 50), Bolton;
  • Thursday, September 15, 2011 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at City of Mississauga Civic Centre, 300 City Centre Drive, Civic Centre Committee Room A, Mississauga.

To sign up for one of the information sessions, obtain funding guidelines or request an application package, contact Nicole Dupuis at ndupuis@unitedwaypeel.org or 905-602-3622.

Youth in Action grants are an initiative by the Young Leaders Council, a group of 20-35 year olds dedicated to creating a legacy of spirited giving and volunteerism within our community and the United Way of Peel Region.

To learn more about Youth in Action Grants click here.

Calling on Peel Residents to ask Provincial Candidates "Why?"

Why do Peel families with special needs children wait up to 12 months for an assessment? Why are there 2,000 Peel families on the wait list for urgent dental care? These are just two questions that the Region is asking all Peel candidates in the lead up to the October 6, 2011 provincial election.

Due to Peel's strong population growth, demand for provincially funded services like childcare, affordable housing, public health, mental health and addiction, and developmental services have simply out-paced available resources. So, Peel residents wait months or even years to access these key services. For example:

  • A family that has found social housing in Peel today has typically waited up to 15 years
  • Youth in Peel can wait up to 10 months to access day treatment services

"For many years Peel residents have waited longer than other Ontarians for important community health and social services," says Region of Peel Chair Emil Kolb. “The gap is significant and growing. The residents of Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga can make this a priority in this provincial election simply by asking all Peel provincial candidates why we wait so long and how they plan to address the gap.”

To help make this a priority in the provincial election, the Region of Peel launched PeelAsksWhy.ca. It is an interactive, community engagement campaign that is encouraging residents, businesses and community groups to ask their provincial candidates why we wait so long for key social and community health services.

"Community involvement is essential to educating and engaging our local provincial candidates and future provincial government in conversations about ways to address our communities' long waiting lists," says Chair Kolb. "Peel Asks Why enables everyone to join in the conversation."

This election is your chance to voice your concerns about the lack of timely access to social and community health services in Peel. Visit PeelAsksWhy.ca to become familiar with the issues and take action by becoming engaged in this campaign and sharing your experience with long wait times with us. Join us on Facebook or Twitter and spread the word that Peel is seeking answers to some important questions.

For more information contact Lowell Rubin-Vaughan, Senior Advisor, Government Relations at PeelAsksWhy@peelregion.ca.

Neighbourhood Development Grants: Call for submissions

Do you have a great idea on how to improve your neighbourhood? Why not apply for a Neighbourhood Development Grant of up to $15,000 – maybe your idea can become reality.

The grants, totalling $300,000, are jointly offered by United Way of Peel Region and the Region of Peel. They give Peel residents an opportunity to partner with local agencies and businesses to create resident-led projects that enhance the quality of neighbourhood life.

Previous grant recipients included: a park beautification project that brought together volunteers, youth and seniors to revitalize a community park; a community kitchen that brought the community together with a number of different activities; a resident council made up of concerned residents hoping to improve the neighbourhood conditions for their families; and a neighbourhood festival that brought residents together and promoted community pride and unity.

“These grants are empowering residents to work together to strengthen their neighbourhoods in ways that create hope and opportunity,” says Anita Stellinga, United Way vice-president of community investment. “Research has proven that a neighbourhood that works together is safer, healthier and more productive.”

All grant applications must be received by United Way of Peel Region at 90 Burnhamthorpe Road West, Suite 408, in Mississauga, no later than Wednesday, September 14 at 4 p.m.

For more information about this funding opportunity and how to receive an application, contact Areeta Bridgemohan, manager, community investment at 905-602-3630 or abridgemohan@unitedwaypeel.org or Charmayne Brown at 647-248-0569 or charmayne.brown@peelregion.ca.

To learn more about United Way’s Neighbourhood Development Grants click here.

Events
Your donation makes an impact

Here are some examples of the difference your donation to the Community Fund makes to families in Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga:

$2 per pay ($52 per year) provides a warm winter jacket for a child or a month’s supply of baby formula to a family struggling financially.

$5 per pay ($130 per year) provides 10 hours of computer training to a child to enhance his or her writing skills, increasing the chances of success in school.

$8 per pay ($200 per year) provides a daily snack program to a child to ensure he or she is able to maintain a healthy active lifestyle.

$10 per pay ($260 per year) provides one child with a safe place to go after school for an entire year.

$15 per pay ($390 per year) provides 10 children with a backpack filled with items such as personal hygiene products, a coping & crisis kit and art supplies to help them cope as a family member struggles with mental illness.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) provides a woman who has been abused by her partner with a year of confidential 24-hour crisis counselling so that she and her children can be safe.

$45 per pay ($1,170 per year) funds an educational speaker event for 100 family members or caregivers to inform them about community resources, crisis management, Ontario Disability support and other programs to help them cope.

$69 per pay ($1,800 per year) provides special supplies and activites to one child that has been recently diagnosed as autistic.

$82 per pay ($2,140 per year) provides 10 parents with an eight-week, intensive parenting program and related resource materials to help enhance their parenting skills.

$192 per pay ($5,000 per year) allows 15 couples or families to attend counselling so that they can improve their relationships.

Upcoming Events

Sep. 13 - Employee Campaign Chair Workshop

Sep. 20 - Employee Campaign Chair Workshop for Non-profit organizations

Sep. 23 - Campaign Kick-off
sponsored by

RBC Insurance

Set. 23 - Day of Caringsponsored by TD Canada Trust

Sep. 24 - Unity in Diversity Gala Fundraiser

Sep. 28 -Community Detour

Oct. 5 - Community Detour

Oct. 29 - Region of Peel's Run, Walk and Roll 5K

Feb. 9 - Community Achievement Celebration


United we can create more vibrant communities
United we can have strong families
United we can be resilient

© 2011 United Way of Peel Region
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September 2011

September 2011
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

$13.93-million goal announced for 2011 campaign

2011 goal announcedCheers and applause erupted from an exhilarated audience as United Way of Peel Region Campaign Chair Tim Bzowey announced a fundraising goal of $13.93-million during United Way’s Campaign Kick-off at the Hershey Centre SportZone on September 23.

“It takes all of us, united, to affect long-lasting change,” said Bzowey to the crowd of more than 500 supporters. “Bringing people together is what United Way is all about. That’s why I’m so proud and excited to be chairing the 2011 campaign.”

Last year donations to United Way’s Community Fund served more than 400,000 people of all ages in Peel. After government, United Way is the largest funder of social services in our community

“By uniting the caring power of our community, we can meet immediate needs and address underlying root causes of social problems,” said United Way of Peel Region CEO Shelley White. “United, we can reduce poverty, create opportunities for newcomers, stop domestic violence, provide support for seniors, and strengthen families, children and youth.”

The highlight of the event was Vice-President of Operations for PepsiCo Foods Canada, Anne-Marie Renaud’s announcement of the 2011 PepsiCo Canada Leadership Challenge Grant. The grant, supported jointly by PepsiCo Beverages Canada and PepsiCo Foods Canada, will match dollar-for-dollar, up to a total of $100,000, all new leadership gifts of $1,000 or more to United Way’s Community Fund.

The event also featured a mock football game to demonstrate teamwork, Town of Caledon Mayor Marolyn Morrison and Tricia Groutsche, who shared her inspirational story on how United Way has positively impacted her life. Following the goal announcement, close to 400 volunteers United in Action to complete seven clean-up projects in neighbourhoods across Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga.

United Way’s Kick-off was sponsored by RBC Insurance. Other supporters included: Apparel Promotion, Canada Dry Motts, City of Mississauga, General Mills, Hershey Canada, Lowe’s Canada, PepsiCo Beverages Canada, Safe City Mississauga, Safe City Brampton, Starbucks, Town of Caledon, Ultima Foods Inc. – Yoplait and University of Toronto Mississauga

United Way unites community for neighbourhood clean-up

United In Action project in BramptonOn September 23 close to 400 volunteers United in Action to help clean-up neighbourhoods in Brampton, Mississauga and Caledon. The clean-up took place following United Way of Peel Region’s 2011 campaign kick-off.

“In addition to launching our 2011 public fundraising campaign, this year our United in Action kick-off aims to bring our community together to build strong vibrant neighbourhoods where residents can thrive,” said United Way CEO Shelley White. “United Way is all about community partnerships, collective action and providing opportunities for residents to enhance their quality of life and make Peel a better place to live and work for everyone.”

The United in Action project is A collaboration between United Way and various community partners including city councillors, Caledon Dufferin Victim Services, City of Brampton, City of Mississauga, EcoCaledon, Safe City Brampton, Safe City Mississauga and University Toronto Mississauga (UTM).

Three of the neighbourhoods targeted for clean-up were indentified through research funded by a United Way Neighbourhood Development Grant. The research conducted by UTM Professor of Geography Dana Wilson and UTM students, builds on previous studies by University of Toronto graduate students and will enhance the understanding of neighbourhood resources, strengths and priority needs.

Clean-up projects included graffiti removal, mural painting by local students, gardening and litter pick-up.

Tricia finds a career path

Tricia“Over the last few years, I’ve struggled with unemployment and dead end jobs, but now I finally feel I have a future.” says Tricia Groutsche, 30.

For most of her life, Tricia has searched for a place to belong. She immigrated to Canada with her parents and four siblings when she was a little girl. The family struggled financially and moved from place to place. As a young adult, Tricia felt she had no direction in her life.

While caring for her dying grandmother, she realized she had a passion for cooking. “When my grandmother was ill, I moved in with her and took care of her,” says Tricia. “I found enjoyment and satisfaction in planning and preparing nutritious meals for her.”

After her grandmother passed away, an employment counsellor referred Tricia to License to Cook, a social purpose enterprise (SPE), hosted by St. Leonard’s Place Peel and funded by a United Way SPE Grant.

SPEs are income-generating businesses that also support a social mission, through License to Cook, Tricia received job training, and is now gainfully employed as a cook. She has enhanced social skills and self esteem, and was recently accepted into Humber College’s Chef Apprentice program.

“If it wasn’t for United Way and the License to Cook program, I don’t know where I’d be,” says Tricia. “From the moment I entered St. Leonard’s I felt a sense of welcome and belonging. Now I am employed at a job I love, I have direction in my life and a path to a successful future!”

Click here to learn more about St. Leonard's Place Peel.

Julie feels she is making an impact

Julie"There but for the grace of God, go I," says Julie Girardi. The senior administrative assistance at Grant Thornton LLP has volunteered as a United Way Employee Campaign Chair for eight years.

"United Way supports so many people from so many walks of life," she says. "When I give to United Way, I know I am supporting vital programs and services that people in our community depend on."

Although Julie has a successful career now, she knows what it is like to go without.

"There have been times in my life when I have struggled,” she admits. “I know the need for United Way funded services first-hand. There are no guarantees in life. Any one, at any time, may find themselves in need."

Julie is very excited about this year's campaign. A bake sale and grilled cheese lunch are among her many fundraising ideas. She also plans to use incentives such as draws and prizes to drive pledge participation.

"Of all the Grant Thorntons in the GTA, our branch [Mississauga] has the highest participation rate," she proudly exclaims. "And I'm confident that this year our rates will be even higher."

For Julie, volunteering as an ECC is fun but also fulfilling and rewarding. She says. "Spreading awareness about United Way funded agencies and helping raise funds to support them, makes me feel like I am making an impact in our community."

The Grant Thornton LLP United Way employee campaign kicks off in October.

Unity in Diversity Gala was a great success

Unity in Diversity Gala

A capacity crowd of 250 people were entertained by African drummers at the Unity in Diversity Gala held September 24 at the Hilton Toronto Hotel in Mississauga. The event hosted by United Way’s Black Community Advisory Council (BCAC) featured inspirational guest speaker Dr. Sheldon Taylor, professor of African Canadian Studies at the University of Toronto, and Grammy Award winning artist Liberty Silver, and comedian Jay Martin.

The evening included an awards ceremony where the following individuals were recognized for their contributions to the community: Harold Braithwaite (education); Madeline Edwards (volunteerism); Shelley Challenger and Michael Steele (business); Wambui Karanja (community work) and Jay Martin (arts/media).

Registration opens for Day of Caring

Register today for Day of Caring taking place on October 20 and you will experience a rewarding day of volunteering.

Day of Caring is a partnership between United Way of Peel Region, United Way-funded agencies, and workplaces/employee groups who want to provide a ‘hands-on’ day to complete a much-needed project or conduct a special initiative for charitable or non-profit organizations.

Day of Caring demonstrates the impact of volunteerism and allows supporters to learn more about how their donations help individuals and families in our community.

Agency projects include: gardening, painting, yard work, computer instruction and more.

To register of learn more about projects available, click here.

For further information, please contact Lin Ferguson, Events Manager at 905-602-3625 or lferguson@unitedwaypeel.org.

Day of Caring participants will receive a baseball cap courtesy of our Day of Caring sponsor - TD Canada Trust and its employees.

Board the Community Detour -- October 5 from 1 to 4 p.m.

See our community like you’ve never seen it before. Join United Way of Peel Region and our partners on a unique and inspiring tour of local United Way funded agencies. The Community Detour bus tour allows you to see and hear how we are working together to support individuals and families and build strong vibrant neighbourhoods.

The Community Detour bus departs from our United Way office, located in the Sussex Centre at 90 Burnhamthorpe Road West. The bus will be boarded at Sussex Gate, located right off Burnhamthorpe Road West. A bagged lunch will be provided.

To reserve your seat for this informative and moving journey, register online or contact Nicole Dupuis at 905-602-3622 or ndupuis@unitedwaypeel.org.

City of Brampton kick-off campaign

Brampton City Manager Deborah Dubenofsky with the Senior Management Team and United Way of Peel Region Chief Executive Officer Shelley White. Brampton City Manager Deborah Dubenofsky, centre, with the city's Senior Management Team, from left, Dennis Cutajar, Tom Mulligan, Julian Patteson, Mo Lewis, and United Way of Peel Region Chief Executive Officer Shelley White, right.

The City of Brampton officially kicked-off its 2011 United Way Employee Campaign on September 8 with a BBQ in Gage Park. Since 1999, City of Brampton employees have raised almost $1 million dollars in support of the United Way of Peel Region.

Hershey's supplies kids with backpacks

Hershey supplies kids with backpacksIn August, employees at Hershey’s ran a “stuff the backpack” event to support youth from Big Brothers Big Sisters of Peel, a United Way funded agency. The enthusiastic and generous employees at Hershey’s exceeded their initial goal of 50 backpacks and donated a total of 72 backpacks filled with school supplies.

Get your Esso Gift Card today!

Esso Gift CardGet your $25 Esso United Way Gift Card and support our community as well as United Ways across Canada. For every gift card purchased, Imperial Oil donates $2 to United Way -- Centraide.

The limited-edition Esso Gift Card can be used to purchase all Esso products and services and is available at more than 600 Esso-branded retail sites across Canada or online at www.myessogiftcard.ca.

The Esso Gift Card is available through November 30, 2011, while quantities last.

Events
Your donation makes an impact

Here are some examples of the difference your donation to the Community Fund makes to families in Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga:

$4 per pay ($104 per year) enables a person with an intellectual disability to try a new activity for the first time.

$5 per pay ($130 per year) provides 10 children with two weeks of summer camp.

$8 per pay ($200 per year) provides a daily snack program to the child of a single-parent ensuring the proper nutrition to maintain a healthy active lifestyle.

$10 per pay ($260 per year) provides 45 youth between the ages of 13 and 24 with eight sessions of leadership development workshop to help them develop leadership skills.

$14 per pay ($362 per year) provides a newcomer with the tools to secure the gainful employment necessary to support their family free of social assistance, though Job Search Workshops.

$17 per pay ($442 per year) provides a couple with a 16-hour parenting course including textbook which will improve their parenting skills and improve their relationship with their children.

$17 per pay ($442 per year) provides tutor training to help 20 individuals develop the literacy skills they need to better themselves on the job.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) will safely match and support a child with a carefully screened adult mentor to provide friendship and guidance for one year.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) provides a woman who has been abused by her partner with a year of confidential 24-hour crisis counselling so that she and her children can be safe.

$45 per pay ($1,170 per year) provides one educational speaker event for 100 family members and caregivers so they can gain relevant information on the Ontario Disability Support Program, Drug Interaction, Crisis Management, Navigating the Court System to enable them to make informed decisions and increase their coping abilities.

$56 per pay ($1,456 per year) provides monthly information sessions for one year to newcomers on important topics that will help them make informed decisions about their settlement.

$69 per pay ($1,800 per year) provides support and encouragement to a newcomer autistic child through the purchase of special supplies and activities.

Upcoming Events

Oct. 5 - Community Detour

Oct. 29 - Region of Peel's Run, Walk and Roll 5K

Feb. 9 - Community Achievement Celebration


United we can create more vibrant communities
United we can have strong families
United we can be resilient

© 2011 United Way of Peel Region
subscribe | unsubscribe | print | contact

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October 2011

September 2011
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

United Way’s impact on poverty

A child starts her day off right - with breakfast at a breakfast club.From 1996 to 2006 the number of Peel residents living in poverty has increased by an alarming 57 per cent. Vulnerable populations – our children, seniors, people living with disabilities and newcomers – are falling further and further behind because provincial and federal funding has not kept up with community needs.

United Way of Peel Region (UWPR) is committed to building vibrant neighbourhoods and communities by reducing poverty, eliminating hunger and ensuring people have access to affordable housing.

UWPR’s Community Fund supports agencies and initiatives that help people cope with root causes of poverty, such as illness, disability, unemployment and fixed income, as well as issues such as poor health, education barriers, violence, abuse and homelessness which can happen as a result of poverty.

Last year, donations to UWPR tackled poverty in a variety of ways:

  • Funding for breakfast clubs so school children would start their day with a healthy breakfast, ensuring they are ready to learn at school;
  • Awarding Social Purpose Enterprise grants to organizations providing gainful employment to single parents, persons with disabilities and others outside the traditional workforce;
  • Partnering with Enbridge Gas Distribution for the Winter Warmth program, which assists individuals and families having a hard time paying their utility bills during the winter months;
  • Collaborating with Social Planning Council of Peel, Fair Share Peel Task Force, and the Region of Peel on a social assistance review to demonstrate our community`s need for increased government funding in the fight against poverty in Peel.

“United Way’s poverty reduction strategy aims to assist those most vulnerable to poverty,” says Community Investment Vice President Anitia Stellinga. “The Community Fund invests in a network of programs and initiatives that support recent immigrants, single parents, seniors, persons with disabilities and families with children. The goal is to make sure individuals and families have opportunities to be involved in their communities, meet their basic needs and have access to resources that help them cope.”

For more information on Peel`s poverty issue, please download Portraits of Peel: A community left behind.

United Way of Peel Region funding fights hunger

A bowl of fruitSeven agencies that support youth, and fight hunger and poverty in Peel are receiving a total of $192,778 in United Way funding. Phase 2 Community Priorities Funding was approved by United Way of Peel Region’s Board of Directors when previously distributed funds became available for reinvestment.

“United Way’s Community Priorities Fund is investing in building a solid, reliable human care service network,” says Anita Stellinga, United Way vice-president of community investment. “It aims to meet the immediate needs, while also tackling underlying, root causes of challenging social issues in our community.”

Catholic Family Services, The Good Food Brampton Community Kitchen, will receive $15,000 to teach youth from the Eclypse program about nutrition, food planning and preparation as well as to enable them to take food home to share with their families.

“Community Kitchens are a way to address the growing concern our community has with food security by bringing people together to learn about, plan and prepare good quality food,” said Susan Harris, Clinical Director with Catholic Family Services of Peel Dufferin. “This funding provides an opportunity for youth to build awareness and learn skills, while they create community support around an issue that is vital to us all – food.”

Other agencies receiving funding are:

The Knights Table, Our Pantry program, in Brampton , will receive $15,000 to increase its capacity to provide food, resources and social supports such as counselling and budgeting workshops to families and individuals who are homeless or in need of program services.

Rapport Youth & Family Services, Eclypse program in Brampton will receive $99,469 to support an after school program that provides a safe and supportive environment for youth where they can access social services, education, employment and health resources.

Anba Abraam Coptic Centre, St. Mary’s Food Bank in Mississauga will receive $15,000 to enhance services. The Food bank provides food to individuals living in ten postal codes in Mississauga through two locations.

Dixie Bloor Neighbourhood Centre, Kids Fun Club & Kitchen Connection in Mississauga will receive $3,309 to build on an existing homework club that provides healthy snacks for children and also teaches youth basic culinary skills.

Eden Community Food Bank (ECFB), Emergency Food Relief & Advocacy Service in Mississauga will receive $30,000 to support food bank operations that provide emergency food relief and advocacy support to up to 500 hungry families in western Mississauga. The program provides service in several languages.

Sikhs Serving Canada, Seva Food Bank in Mississauga will receive $15,000 to provide safe, healthy, nutritious and culturally appropriate food to people of low income and engage the community through volunteer opportunities.

Dealing with tough times

JamesFour years ago, James Kwiatkowski was living on the streets and forced to eat from garbage bins.

Today James has a place to live and works as a handyman doing renovations and odd jobs. But he still struggles to make ends meet and buy groceries.

“Right now work is slow,” says James. “It's difficult to work steadily during this uncertain economy.”

One thing James can depend on is a hot nutritious meal, thanks to a meal program, provided through a United Way funded agency.

“Worrying about finding my next job can be stressful but not having to worry about my next meal is a great relief,” he says.

Employees spend a Day of Caring in the community

More than 100 employees from 22 Peel-based companies traded their briefcases and file folders for brooms and paint brushes. They shared their time and talents with 16 United Way-funded agencies across Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga by participating in this year’s Day of Caring.

Day of Caring is a partnership between United Way of Peel Region, United Way-funded agencies, and workplaces/employee groups who want to provide a “hands-on” day to complete a much-needed project or conduct a special initiative for charitable or non-profit organizations.

“It was a day when workplace volunteers from every sector rolled up their sleeves and spent time making a difference in their community,” says Shelley White, CEO, United Way of Peel Region. “Each employee has a unique and personal experience they will remember long for a long time. The return on their investment of time to our United Way agencies is significant. Every volunteer hour translates into dollars an agency can shift from its operating budget to client services.”

Day of Caring demonstrates the impact of volunteers in our community, and allows donors to experience first-hand the services provided by United Way of Peel Region and their agency. It provides employee volunteers with an experience that will last for a lifetime bringing them closer to community initiatives and seeing their United Way agency and donation in action.

Click here to see the list of participating agencies and businesses.
Click here to view photographs.

Hewlett-Packard donates back packs

An employee from Hewlett-Packard (Canada) Co. distributes  back packs donated by the company to children at the Boys and Girls Club of Peel, Acorn Breakfast Club on October 5. The  Boys and Girls Club of Peel is a United Way funded agency empowering children to be the best they can be.

An employee from Hewlett-Packard (Canada) Co. distributes back packs donated by the company to children at the Boys and Girls Club of Peel, Acorn Breakfast Club on October 5. The Boys and Girls Club of Peel is a United Way funded agency empowering children to be the best they can be.

Labour Council launches fundraising campaign

Members from the United Way of Peel Region joined members of CUPE 966, OPSEU 506, OPSEU 277, OPSEU 519, CUPW Toronto, USW District 6, CLC, IAMAW 717T, BMDLC, OFL, USW 7536, CUPE 66, COPE 343, CAW 1285, SEIU Local 1, CAW 584, USW 9042, USW Peel Halton, CUPE Peel Council, and representatives from the OFL and the CLC.Members from the United Way of Peel Region joined members of CUPE 966, OPSEU 506, OPSEU 277, OPSEU 519, CUPW Toronto, USW District 6, CLC, IAMAW 717T, BMDLC, OFL, USW 7536, CUPE 66, COPE 343, CAW 1285, SEIU Local 1, CAW 584, USW 9042, USW Peel Halton, CUPE Peel Council, and representatives from the OFL and the CLC.

More than 50 representatives from 21 union locals united at a breakfast to launch the Brampton Mississauga and District Labour Council United Way Campaign. Highlights of the event included speakers: President of the Brampton Mississauga and District Labour Council Motilall Sarjoo; CAW 584 President Dave Champagne, President of the Ontario Federation of Labour Sid Ryan; United Way President and CEO Shelley White; and a young woman who shared her personal story about how United Way funded programs changed her life. The Council aims to raise $15,000 for United Way.

United Way and the Canadian Labour Congress signed a formal partnership over 20 years ago to work together for the good of our communities.

Leadership Donor spotlight: Humphrey Mitchell

Humphrey Mitchell“I see the good work United Way does day in and day out for families, children, youth and seniors in our community, and that’s why I give,” said Humphrey Mitchell, executive director of Peel Children’s Centre and a United Way Leadership Donor.

Humphrey has always had a passion for volunteering. He grew up in a home where volunteering was a way of life.

“My parents were volunteers in our community and also donated to many charities,” he explains. “Then when they were older and struggled with health issues, they depended on some of the services they had supported throughout their lives.”

Humphry believes we all have a responsibility to support our community and he encourages people to give both donations and their time.

“When you give to United Way, you help make the community better for all of us and that feels good on a personal level,” he says. “My parents would often say ‘you should give what you get and often you will get what you give’.”
Humphrey has worked and volunteered in children’s services since 1975. In 2008, he received the Elizabeth Manson Award for his work in children’s mental health.
The 2011 PepsiCo Canada Leadership Challenge Grant provides matching funds for new or increased gifts of $1,000 or more to United Way’s Community Fund. For information on becoming a Leadership Donor click here.

Union locals support our community

"We want to make Peel a better place for everyone," said President of local union CAW 584 and United Way Labour Committee Chair Dave Champagne.

The married father of two young children, Dave was born and raised in Peel. He has been part of the local union leadership team for more than a decade and an active volunteer in our community for close to 20 years. He is committed to strengthening the relationship between labour unions and United Way to improve the quality of life in Peel.

"Our union members are engaged with various United Way funded agencies and are passionate about making a difference in the community where we work and live," said Dave. "Unions have a long tradition of supporting community initiatives and our contributions are filling some of the greatest needs within our community.”

At the Labour United Way fundraising campaign launch in September, Dave issued a challenge to individual local unions to donate $1 per member. In response, local CAW 584 donated $500 to United Way's Community Fund. The Union has a long-standing history with United Way and shares its commitment to reducing poverty, strengthening families and building vibrant neighbourhoods.

Young Leaders’ Council hosts literacy event on November 5

United Way of Peel Region's Young Leaders Council invites you to Reading in Your Neighbourhood on November 5 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Malton Library, 3540 Morning Star Drive in Mississauga. This is the second annual Day of Caring event hosted by the council. The theme of this year’s event is Helping Kids Be All They Can Be.

Reading in Your Neighbourhood is a free event and provides an opportunity for children ages three to eight to build literacy skills with fun and interactive activities. Parents will also get an enhanced understanding of new ways to support children's literacy development. Activities for the day will include a story time, arts and crafts, and a workshop for parents. Everyone is welcome. Come for an hour or stay all day!

To register visit www.ylcread.eventbrite.com.
Youth interested in volunteering please visit www.volunteerylc.eventbrite.com.

Joint hospital campaign raises $77,015 for United Way

Senior leaders from The Credit Valley Hospital, Trillium Health Centre and William Osler Health System today announced the results of the second annual Tri-Hospital United Way Campaign. Together, the staff, physicians and volunteers of the three hospitals contributed $77,015 to support United Way of Peel Region and United Way Toronto.

“Our local hospitals were clearly inspired by their campaign slogan of United we can make a difference,” said Shelley White, President and CEO of United Way of Peel Region at today’s wrap-up event at The Credit Valley Hospital. “The generosity of the staff, physicians and volunteers will help support vital agencies and programs in neighbourhoods in Peel and Toronto.”

The three hospitals — which have sites across Peel Region and Toronto — ran their United Way campaign from September 21 to October 20.

Click here to read the full news release.

Get your Esso Gift Card today!

Esso Gift CardGet your $25 Esso United Way Gift Card and support our community as well as United Ways across Canada. For every gift card purchased, Imperial Oil donates $2 to United Way -- Centraide.

The limited-edition Esso Gift Card can be used to purchase all Esso products and services and is available at more than 600 Esso-branded retail sites across Canada or online at www.myessogiftcard.ca.

The Esso Gift Card is available through November 30, 2011, while quantities last.

Events
Your donation makes an impact

Here are some examples of the difference your donation to the Community Fund makes to families in Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga:

$2 a pay ($52) provides a warm winter jacket for a child or a month’s supply of baby formula for a family struggling financially.

$5 per pay ($130 per year) provides 10 children with two weeks summer camp.

$8 per pay ($200 per year) provides a daily snack program for a single-parent child ensuring the proper nutrition to maintain a healthy active lifestyle.

$14 per pay ($362 per year) provides a newcomer with the tools to secure the gainful employment necessary to support their family free of social assistance, though free Job Search Workshops.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) assists a senior with purchasing a walker which allows them to be mobile and enhances their independence.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) provides a nutritious breakfast before school for 5 children for the entire school year, boosting their ability to learn and grow.

Upcoming Events

Oct. 5 - Reading in your Neighbourhood

Feb. 9 - Community Achievement Celebration


United we can create more vibrant communities
United we can have strong families
United we can be resilient

© 2011 United Way of Peel Region
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November 2011

November 2011
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

Total raised as of November 28: $4,644,722 (33.3% of goal)

Give where you live

If you live in Brampton, Caledon or Mississauga but work outside of our region, you can still support the community where you live by designating your payroll deductions to United Way of Peel Region.

Every dollar donated to the United Way of Peel Region Community Fund supports programs that will help achieve priority goals here in Mississauga, Brampton and Caledon — making it possible for more children to grow up to be the best they can be, for more seniors, people with disabilities and newcomers to experience a sense of belonging and value within our community, and for people suffering from addiction, mental health issues, homelessness and other serious challenges to turn their lives around. In 2010, 56 agencies received funding and 99 programs were supported. Those agencies touched more than 400,000 people.

Our community’s need is greater than ever before. Please give where you live. You can donate online at www.unitedwaypeel.org.

You’re invited...

2011 Community Achievement CelebrationBecause of you, United Way is “tackling” important issues within the community. Because of you, there are new possibilities for our community! Please join us in celebrating the difference that you make.

On behalf of United Way of Peel Region, we invite you to join us at our Community Achievement Celebration on Thursday, February 9, 2012.

We will be marking the conclusion of the 2011 campaign and highlighting United Way’s important work in the community. United, we can change lives today and build better futures for tomorrow, for everyone in our community.

This event is our opportunity to thank and celebrate the many individuals and organizations that have partnered with us in the 2011 United Way Campaign.

Please don’t miss out on this exciting night of fun, celebration and amazing prizes!

Thursday, February 9, 2012
5:30 p.m. - Cocktail reception
6:30 p.m. - Dinner, Entertainment and Awards
International Centre, 6900 Airport Rd., Mississauga

Click here for event details and to register today.

Do you have the Spirit...or know of others that do?

Spirit Award nominations now being accepted

Do you know of an innovative and creative workplace campaign that inspired employee participation while promoting team spirit and raising funds for our community? If so, nominate it for a United Way Spirit Award!

All nominations must be delivered to United Way of Peel Region by 5 p.m. on January 6, 2012. Winners will be announced at United Way’s annual Community Achievement Celebration on Thursday, February 9, 2012.

Click here to see the list of Spirit Awards and to download a nomination form.

Community Impact: Supporting Peel’s children and youth

Did you know...

  • 1 in 5 children in Peel are living in poverty?
  • 32 per cent of children entering school are not ready to learn?
  • In 2010, Peel’s Children’s Aid Society there were 11,654 calls to about children’s safety and well being,
  • Suicide is the number one cause of death among young people in Canada?

When you give to United Way of Peel Region, your donations support a network of essential services providing basic needs and support, that build strong families and support children and youth to be the best they can be.

Thanks to generous donations, in 2010 United Way’s Community Fund assisted more than 23,000 families and children through:

  • Breakfast clubs to ensure children receive healthy nutritious meals
  • Counselling programs for youth to help them make positive choices
  • Mentoring and leadership programs that lift confidence levels in children and youth
  • Independent accommodations and supportive housing for youth experiencing a troubled home life
  • Classes and workshops for parents to help them problem solve and manage their children’s behaviour
  • Caregiver and toddler programs where they can socialize and participate in fun activities outside the home
  • Youth in Action grants that encourage youth to participate in neighbourhood engagement
  • Collaborating with Peel Children’s Youth Initiative, Region of Peel and other partners on youth and children’s issues and our need for increased government funding in our community to create change today and provide hope for tomorrow.

United Way is dedicated to working with community partners to ensure children in Peel have every opportunity to reach their full potential. Please help us by giving to United Way of Peel Region’s Community Fund today.

Community Impact: Aryan gets a great start in school

Aryan Kumar Singh and his mother, Nisha, pictured when Aryan was 4.When Aryan Kumar Singh was four, his mother Nisha, had some concerns about him starting school. English is not the family’s first language and she worried how it might affect her son’s learning. She also worried about Aryan’s social skills.

“Aryan would often confuse Hindi with English,” explains Nisha. “Also, he is an only child and I worried about how he would get along with other children.”

Then a LION roared into the neighbourhood! LION, or Learning In Our Neighbourhood, is a mobile early learning centre that visits high-density, under-served areas of the region. On the LION, families with children under age 6 attend interactive programs focused on language, literacy and numeracy. They also receive parenting, health and settlement information and referrals.

The LION program is supported by United Way of Peel Region, Peel Children and Youth Initiative, Region of Peel - Children’s Services and more than 40 public and private community leaders.

Aryan and Nisha regularly attended LION programs for more than two years. During that time, Nisha watched Aryan become more independent and confident. He learned to play well with others, his English improved and his vocabulary expanded.

Aryan, now 6, attends grade one and is a happy and social participant in class. Recently he was chosen to read the morning announcements over the PA system.

“I’m so proud it brings tears to my eyes,” beams mom, Nisha. “I recommend the LION program to all parents. It helped Aryan get a great start in school.”

Click here for more information about LION.

General Mills employees stuff the bus for United Way

General Mills Canada stuffed the bus with warm clothing.

After its employees stuffed a mini school bus to the brim with warm clothing for the Boys & Girls Club of Peel, General Mills Canada unveiled that it had blasted through its 2011 fundraising campaign goal in support of United Way of Peel Region. On Tuesday, November 22, the company announced that it had reached new heights by raising $474,180 for the charity, an increase of more than 20 per cent over the results of its 2010 campaign.

Thanks to the generosity of General Mills Canada and its employees, United Way will be able to further its support of countless community services, programs and initiatives across the Peel Region. Additionally, due to the company’s “Stuff the Bus with Warmth” campaign, the Boys & Girls Club of Peel will have mountains of clothing to add to its annual clothing drive that will help keep the residents of Acorn Place warmly dressed this winter.

Volumes of Malton residents attend literacy event

Jecca Jaramilla and Jyothi Ala participate in activites at the free “Reading in your Neighbourhood” event on November 5, 2011.Jecca Jaramilla and Jyothi Ala participate in activites at the free “Reading in your Neighbourhood” event on November 5, 2011.

More than 250 children and their parents attended Reading in your Neighbourhood at the Malton Library. The November 5th event was hosted by United Way of Peel Region’s Young Leaders Council (YLC) in support the national “Helping Kids Be All They Can Be” Day of Caring. The event featured storybook readings, word games, and arts and crafts. The event also included a workshop where parents learned the importance of reading and how to encourage their children to read at home.

“It is important for young people to get involved in the community,” said Diane Saldanha, co-chair of the Young Leaders’ Council. “This initiative gives YLC members an opportunity to support children with the tools they need to reach their full potential and be successful. Getting involved in initiatives like this helps us make a meaningful contribution to building a stronger, healthier community.”

The Young Leaders’ Council is a group of individuals 20-35 who are active and emerging leaders working together to promote the engagement of our generation within Peel Region. YLC empowers Peel's emergi ng leaders to strengthen the community and inherit the future of United Way of Peel Region.

Interested in learning more about YLC? Contact Jen Davis at jdavis@unitedwaypeel.org or 905-620-3622.

Events
Your donation makes an impact

Here are some examples of the difference your donation to the Community Fund makes in Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga:

$2 a pay ($52) provides a warm winter jacket for a child or a month’s supply of baby formula for a family struggling financially.

$10 per pay ($260 a year) provides one child with a safe place to go after school for an entire year.

$12 per pay ($312 a year) enrolls three women who were victims of abuse and domestic violence in an 8-week support group with their children to enhance their life skills and learn about a wide range of community services.

$14 per pay ($364 per year) provides a newcomer with job search workshops so that he or she can secure the gainful employment necessary to support their family.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) assists a senior with purchasing a walker which allows them to be mobile and enhances their independence.

$40 per pay ($1,040 per year) provides a nutritious breakfast before school for 5 children for the entire school year, boosting their ability to learn and grow.

Upcoming Events

Feb. 9 - Community Achievement Celebration


United we can create more vibrant communities
United we can have strong families
United we can be resilient

© 2011 United Way of Peel Region
subscribe | unsubscribe | print | contact

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Bookmark and Share

December 9, 2011

November 2011
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

Total raised as of November 28: $4,644,722 (33.3% of goal)

2011 Campaign Update

United Way of Peel Region’s 2011 Campaign is at 41 per cent of the $13.93-million goal – 10 per cent below last year’s revenue at this time.

With just weeks to go in its annual fundraising campaign, United Way is asking the residents of Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga to come together and generously support the people of our community who are struggling.

“Never has there been a greater need in our community for the services and programs supported by United Way,” says Tim Bzowey, 2011 Campaign Chair and Vice-President, Property and Casualty, RBC Insurance. “Thousands of people rely on this network of support every day. We’re asking everyone who can possibly help to be as generous as possible — your community needs you!”

Every dollar donated to United Way’s Community Fund supports programs that will make it possible for more children to grow up to be the best they can be, for more seniors, people with disabilities and newcomers to experience a sense of belonging and value within our community, and for people suffering from addiction, mental health issues, homelessness and other serious challenges to turn their lives around.

United Way is the largest funder of social services in Peel after government. We are committed to being ethical, honest, transparent and responsible. For every dollar we receive 84 cents is invested wisely into programs, services and initiatives that will make a maximum impact and will improve quality of life in our community.

“People from all walks of life and in many different circumstances count on the lifeline of support provided through United Way,” says Shelley White, CEO of United Way of Peel Region. “We must do everything we can to make sure the support is available for our residents when they need it.”

Every gift makes a difference. Please give generously today.
How you can help:

  1. Make a personal or corporate gift; call 905-602-3650 or go to www.unitedwaypeel.org
  2. Make a gift of stocks or marketable securities, call Karen at 905-602-3634
  3. Run an employee campaign in your workplace, call at 905-602-3650
  4. Host a fundraiser for United Way, call 905-602-3650 or visit www.unitedwaypeel.org.

All donations received (or postmarked) by December 31 are eligible for a 2011 tax receipt.

Community Impact: Seniors need our help

Did you know...

  • Peel’s senior population is increasing at almost three times the rate of the provincial and national senior’s population?
  • Nearly 40 per cent of seniors living alone in Peel, live in poverty? The rate jumps to 43 per cent for single female seniors.
  • 10 to 25 per cent of seniors experience mental health disorders?
  • 10 percent of seniors are victims of abuse? In most cases the abuser is someone close to them.
  • 70 per cent of Peel’s seniors are immigrants?

United Way’s Community Fund supports a network of vital services for seniors from many walks of life and circumstances. United Way is committed to ensuring seniors are included, helping inclusion and reducing isolation among our diverse senior population by funding social, recreational and wellness programs such as:

  • Exercise classes to keep seniors active and physically fit
  • Workshops to provide education on maintaining a healthy lifestyle
  • Group dining experiences, outing and recreational activities to keep seniors social
  • A variety of ethnic and cultural groups to support newcomer seniors
  • Volunteer visitors who provide companionship and reduce loneliness and isolation

Your donations assist seniors to be healthy and live independently. United, we are creating communities where everyone is cared for, connected and included. Please give today.

Community Impact: Bev has reasons to SMILE

Bev Turner-EmmonsFive years ago, Bev Turner-Emmons, 79, had her right leg amputated above the knee. She was in the hospital for more than six months. When she came home she was in a wheelchair and felt weak and fragile. A widow, Bev received some help from her son, but longed to be more independent.

"After lying in a hospital bed for all those months, I found I had lost muscle tone and strength," she says.

SMILE (Simple Movement to Enhance Independent living for the Elderly) is an in-home program is offered through Caledon Meals on Wheels and funded by United Way. It supports seniors like Bev who have physical limitations and are homebound. Once a week a SMILE instructor visits Bev and leads her through an exercise routine designed to fit her needs and abilities.

"Since starting my home exercise program I am regaining my strength and muscle tone. I can pull myself up to stand, reach the cupboards and do a lot more things I couldn't do when I first came home," says Bev. "Exercising keeps my blood moving and makes me feel alive!"

United Way is committed to assisting seniors like Bev to live healthy and independent lives by funding programs like SMILE. In addition to exercise programs, United Way also funds dining programs where seniors get together to socialize while enjoying a nutritious meal. This month Bev is looking forward to the Congregate Dining annual Christmas dinner.

"Good friends, good food and good health," she says. "This year it really is a Merry Christmas."

Donating securities is a win win

In late 2006 the federal government removed the capital gains tax owed on donations of publicly traded securities to registered charities. This tax advantage substantially reduces the after-tax cost of giving. Individuals able to donate shares can make a significant gift and receive a tax receipt for the value of the shares.

All donations, including gifts of securities, help United Way of Peel Region ensure the vulnerable residents of our community are cared for, connected and included.

Donating securities to United Way of Peel Region is easy, convenient and the most tax efficient method of giving. It is as simple as completing a transfer form. By transferring appreciated securities to United Way, donors can benefit from savings while ensuring the maximum impact of their gift.

“It’s a win-win,” says Karen Seunarine, director of major gifts. “When donating shares instead of cashing them, donors get a tax receipt for the fair market value of the shares. You don’t pay capital gains tax, and in most cases, brokerage houses reduce or waive brokerage fees.”

The following exchangeable shares are eligible:
• Shares, rights, bonds or debentures listed on a designated stock exchange
• Shares of a Canadian public mutual fund corporation
• Units of a widely held Canadian mutual fund trust
• An interest in a segregated (insurance) fund trust
• A bond or debenture issued or guaranteed by the Government of Canada or one of the provinces

If you are thinking about donating appreciated securities, please seek expert advice from a tax specialist or your broker to ensure that your financial goals are considered, your tax situation reviewed, and that your gift is tailored to your circumstances.

Click here to download stock and security transfer forms.

All donations to United Way’s Community Fund support essential programs, services and initiatives that hundreds of men, women and children across Peel depend on every day. Last year more than 400-thousand Peel residents turned to United Way-funded agencies for help.

If you would like to learn more about transferring securities or making a gift to United Way, please contact Karen Seunarine, Director, Major Gifts and Planned Giving at 905-602-3634 or kseunarine@unitedwaypeel.org.

Community Achievement Celebration tickets on sale now

2011 Community Achievement CelebrationBecause of you, United Way is tackling important issues in our community. Because of you, there are new possibilities for our community. Please join us in celebrating the difference you make.

On behalf of United Way of Peel Region, we invite you to join us at our Community Achievement Celebration on Thursday, February 9, 2012.

We will be marking the conclusion of the 2011 campaign and highlighting United Way’s important work in the community. This event is our opportunity to thank and celebrate the many individuals and organizations that have partnered with us in the 2011 United Way Campaign.

Please don’t miss out on this exciting night of fun, celebration and amazing prizes!

Thursday, February 9, 2012
5:30 p.m. - Cocktail reception
6:30 p.m. - Dinner, Entertainment and Awards
International Centre, 6900 Airport Rd., Mississauga

Click here for event details and to register today.

Spirit Award nominations deadline is January 11

Do you know of an innovative and creative workplace campaign that inspired employee participation while promoting team spirit and raising funds for our community? If so, nominate it for a United Way Spirit Award!

All nominations must be delivered to United Way of Peel Region by 5 p.m. on January 11, 2012. Winners will be announced at United Way’s annual Community Achievement Celebration on Thursday, February 9, 2012.

Click here to see the list of Spirit Awards and to download a nomination form.

Vale Canada’s campaign sees 54% increase

Vale Canada LimitedEmployees at Vale Canada Limited in Mississauga raised a whopping $19,187 during their 2011 workplace campaign. This achievement is a 54 per cent increase over last year’s campaign total. The campaign ran from October 24 to 31. Fundraising events included a 50/50 draw, silent auction and a pumpkin carving contest.

Vale is proud to support United Way of Peel Region in its efforts to develop long-term, lasting solutions to challenging social issues affecting the people living in Peel. Congratulations to the Vale Canada Limited team!

Chubb Edwards support United Way

Congratulations to Chubb Edwards, A Division of UTC Fire & Security, in Mississauga, for raising $19,574 during their 2011 United Way workplace campaign. The one-month campaign kicked off in October with a BBQ. Other fundraising events included a pancake breakfast, raffles and incentives to promote payroll deduction participation. Way to go Chubb Edwards

Special Ticket Offer!

Discounted tickets to Buffalo Bills game - and $10 per ticket goes to UWPR!

Support the Buffalo Bills and United Way of Peel Region by purchasing discounted ticketes to the December 18 game againest the Miami Dolphins.

Tickets are reguarily $75. Through this special offer you pay only $30. And the Buffalo Bills will donate $10 per ticket to United Way of Peel Region.

To purchase tickets, click this link and enter the code GPUW.

Click here to view the promotional flyer.

Events
Your donation makes an impact

A $26 donation provides a health education workshop for 30 seniors to assist them in making healthy choices that will enhance their quality of life.

A $130 donation provides a Tai Chi class for 20 seniors to keep them active and engaged with the community or allows 18 seniors to attend a gentle exercise program that enables them to stay physically able to remain living and aging in their own homes.

A $260 donation provides a friendly in-home visit offering companionship, friendly conversation and a vital safety check for 20 isolated seniors.

A $416 donation provides support, options and relief for a vulnerable senior experiencing abuse.

A $520 donation enables 100 seniors living rurally and isolated to attend a social lunch, so that they have companionship and an opportunity to re-new relationships with friends and neighbours.

$1,040 donation supplies a vulnerable senior with a walker allowing them to be mobile and enhances their independence.

 

Upcoming Events

Feb. 9 - Community Achievement Celebration


United we can create more vibrant communities
United we can have strong families
United we can be resilient

© 2011 United Way of Peel Region
subscribe | unsubscribe | print | contact

Facebook Twitter Flickr Linked In You Tube
Bookmark and Share

December 22, 2011

December 22, 2011
Way to Go!
NEWS FROM UNITED WAY OF PEEL REGION

57% of goal raised as of December 19

Campaign Update December 22: We need your help

United Way of Peel Region’s 2011 Campaign is at 57 per cent of the $13.93-million goal. United Way is asking you, the residents of Brampton, Caledon and Mississauga, to unite and give generously to support your friends and neighbours, the men, women and children in our community who are struggling.

Every dollar donated to United Way’s Community Fund supports programs and services that hundreds of thousands of people from our community depend on every day. Your donation will make it possible for more children to grow up to be the best they can be, for more seniors, people with disabilities and newcomers to experience a sense of belonging and value within our community, and for people suffering from addiction, mental health issues, homelessness and other serious challenges to turn their lives around.

United Way is the largest funder of social services in Peel after government. We are committed to being ethical, honest, transparent and responsible. For every dollar we receive 84 cents is invested wisely into vital programs, services and initiatives that will make a maximum impact and ensure Peel is a thriving community for everyone.

Every gift makes a difference. Please give generously by donating online at www.unitedwaypeel.org or call 905-602-3650.

All donations received (or postmarked) by December 31 are eligible for a 2011 tax receipt.

Community impact: Newcomers

Did you know...

  • 33 per cent of Peel’s recent immigrants live in poverty. This is three times the poverty rate of the non-immigrant population.
  • 44 per cent of recent immigrants to Peel have a Bachelor Degree or higher.
  • On average, 22,000 recent immigrants settle in Peel each year.
  • 60 per cent of newcomers do not end up working in the same occupational field as they did before coming to Canada.
  • Research indicates the settlement process for newcomers and immigrants can take as long as 10 years.

Peel has the largest and fastest growing immigrant population in Canada. In 2010 your donations to United Way of Peel Region assisted 44,649 newcomers and immigrants by supporting vital settlement and other social programs and services for adults, youth and seniors. United Way invests in agencies that not only help newcomers settle but also provide ongoing programs and services to assist immigrants with issues such as intergenerational conflicts, adjusting to different roles for men and women, as well as maintaining employment and coping with financial difficulties. United Way funds:

  • English classes
  • Translation and assessment of foreign credentials
  • Job training through volunteer opportunities
  • Mentorship programs
  • Recreational and social activities for seniors, and
  • Culturally appropriate counselling and crisis intervention for youth and their families

United Way partners with local agencies and collaboratives such as the Peel Newcomer Strategy Group to ensure newcomers and immigrants of all ages and ethnicities are able to fully participate in our society. United Way believes everyone plays a role in creating resilient individuals, strong families and a thriving community.

To learn more about Peel Newcomer Strategy Group visit www.peelnewcomer.org.

Peel Results Based Accountability Report launched

Over 150 community leaders gathered at St. Paul’s United Church in Brampton on December 12 for the launch of Peel Counts – a community based report that focuses on the importance of
measurement to achieve a better quality of life for Region of Peel residents. Peel is only one of a handful of communities in the province focusing on measurement, also known as Results Based Accountability (RBA). Over the last 12 months, United Way of Peel Region and Region of Peel engaged community agencies, service providers, businesses and residents around the demand for human services and the most impactful data to measure community wide-positive change. The results from those stakeholder sessions helped inform the community data and actions outlined in the Peel Counts report.

The report is intended to be the springboard for community wide conversations and the development of specific measurable actions. It is these actions that will be monitored, measured and will guide the future role of community wide stakeholders in achieving positive social change in Peel. For the United Way of Peel Region and the Region of Peel those action plans will influence the role played individually and collectively as funders who invest millions of dollars within the community.

For more information on Peel's nine priority populations and issues and to read the full report, visit www.peelcounts.ca

Pratt & Whitney reaches new heights with campaign

Senior draftsmen Bryan Bond and Marty Gorospe lead an entertaining game during a fundraising bake sale. Senior draftsmen Bryan Bond and Marty Gorospe lead an entertaining game during a fundraising bake sale.

Congratulations to employees at Pratt & Whitney Canada for running an amazing United Way workplace campaign. In Ontario participation rates were up by almost 40 per cent which helped them raise a total of $100,663! Popular fundraising events included a silent auction and bake sale. The campaign ran from October 11 to the 21. Overall Pratt & Whitney Canada employees and retirees donated over $1.3 million to United Way Centraide's annual campaign. Thank you Pratt & Whitney Canada for your support.

Whirlpool exceeds goal

The “Hamburger Pumpkin” carved by Whirlpool’s Portables/New Business Development department was judged the most creative.The “Hamburger Pumpkin” carved by Whirlpool’s Portables/New Business Development department was judged the most creative.

Employees at Whirlpool Canada united and gave generously to support our community by raising more than $105,000 during their 2011 United Way workplace campaign. exceeding their goal by $20,000.

Fundraising events that created great team spirit included a pumpkin carving contest, department snack carts, a slow cooker cook off and raffles. Congratulations to Whirlpool for an outstanding 2011 campaign.

Events
Your donation makes an impact

$130 will provide 90 new immigrants with group orientation information on Canadian laws concerning housing, employment and parenting.

$260 provides support counseling to 26 immigrant families to help them overcome barriers to effective integration into Canadian society.

$364 provides a newcomer with job search workshops so that he or she can secure the gainful employment necessary to support their family.

$520 provides 52 families with vital information on community services to help them with their initial settlement in Brampton.

$650 will enable over 200 unemployed newcomers to participate in the in a Job Search Program.

$780 provides materials for a weekly volunteer facilitated English conversation group so that newcomer seniors can practice speaking English in day-to-day situations.

$1,040 will provide one-time assistance to over 100 immigrant families to help them settle and begin productive lives in Canada.

$1,456 provides monthly information sessions for one year to newcomers on important topics that will help them make informed decisions about their settlement.

Upcoming Events

Feb. 9 - Community Achievement Celebration


United we can create more vibrant communities
United we can have strong families
United we can be resilient

© 2011 United Way of Peel Region
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