The United Way CSO campaign is well underway and since the kickoff breakfast in September has been gaining steam. In order to support the needs of the community, United Way is asking for your help to make a difference in the lives of kids, families, and seniors.

Thanks to the generosity of United Way’s supporters through the 2016 campaign, United Way was able to invest $1.39M in 41 local agencies in 2017. This supports programs addressing some of the most urgent needs in our community – from programs aimed at preventing youth violence to emergency shelter and trauma counselling for women and subsidized meal services.

“The financial support we receive from United Way relieves some of the burden of fundraising to cover costs of the Inside/Out Violence Prevention Program for Youth, which then allows other dollars raised to be redirected to critical frontline services,” says Karen Mason, Executive Director of Kelowna Women’s Shelter. “We are so grateful to everyone who supports the United Way campaign, and are honoured to be a community partner.”

“Despite how proud we are of the incredible impact the 2016 investments will have, there is still so much more to be done,” says Helen Jackman, Executive Director of United Way CSO. “Our funds were massively oversubscribed this year – we had almost 50% more requests for support than we had available funding. And that’s not because our funds went down – the needs are just increasing.”

There are growing needs in our communities. 1 in 5 children live in poverty. We have a growing gap between the rich and the poor – over 50% of households are only 2 paycheques away from losing their car or house. 1 in 5 people live with mental illness and we have a homelessness crisis in the cities across our region – 360 people are estimated to be experiencing homelessness in Kelowna and Penticton. These issues and challenges impact all of us. And none of us knows what is around the corner.

“We urgently need this community to rise to the challenge and think about going above and beyond,” Helen continues. “Our fundraising goal for this campaign is $1.2M. We are making progress thanks to the energy and passion of our workplace campaigns and donors who have given $250,000 since we kicked off in September. Help us reach our goal and ensure we can impact the most pressing needs of families and children in our community.”

All donations received by December 31, 2017 will get a 2017 tax receipt. The campaign officially ends January 31, 2018.  For more information on the impact of your donations, visit:

To donate to the campaign, visit: or call 1-855-232-1321.