COVID-19 Local Response and Recovery Impact

In light of the pandemic, United Way stepped up to address emerging needs in our community. So many communities, charities and vulnerable populations were disproportionately affected and as we gathered feedback, an emergency response plan was implemented.

Together with local partners, United Way Centraide Canada and the Government of Canada, United Way British Columbia invested over $1.9M to 94 charities throughout our region.

COVID-19 Local Relief Impact

Together, we provided financial support to partners adapting their frontline services for the vulnerable members of our community.

Visit the local COVID19 Relief Fund or the ECSF Investment page for more information.

“In crises, there exists opportunity. It has been inspiring to see the collective action over the last few months that has emerged in order to best serve those most impacted by the pandemic. The work of social and community based agencies have been instrumental life lines for our most vulnerable neighbours. We are grateful to all our partners, including all levels of government, who have come together to address urgent and emergent needs the sector is facing.

While we have been able to make incredible investment and impact due to the generosity of time, knowledge and resources of so many, there still exists a dire need in the sector and we continue to appeal to all our friends and partners to come together to address the social issues that have been heightened through COVID19,”

– Kahir Lalji, Executive Director of United Way British Columbia

COVID19 Relief Investments and Programs

Collectively, over 1.9M was invested in 94 charity programs across our region to support emerging needs due to the pandemic. The generosity of local donors, in addition to provincial and federal funding enabled vital program expansion and investments to support vulnerable Canadians during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Children & Youth Wellbeing

Car seats and baby care items provided for low-income families
Healthy and nutritious food backpacks for children in need
Programs and services supporting LGBTQ+ youth

Basic Needs and Supplies

Rent payment immediate relief for families suffering job loss
Personal sanitation kits handed out for people with limited access to services
Grocery hampers and mid-day meals delivered for food-insecure families

Help for Seniors

Expansion of 211 phone service across our region (through provincial government funding)
Physical and virtual capacity support for community senior and health support hub
1,604 isolated seniors and 730 volunteers connected for grocery runs

Capacity for Community Services

Transitioning rural community programs into virtual delivery of community services
Setting up physical safety measures allowing programs to continue doing vital work

Mental Health Support

Supporting regional mental health crisis lines, which saw a 60% increase in volume
Distress phone calls de-escalated and supported by highly-trained volunteer crisis line responders
Virtual counselling sessions conducted for individuals experiencing mental distress

Support for Volunteers

Streamlined volunteer training for newly recruited crisis line responders across our region
Training 300+ newly engaged volunteers for continuous provision of vital services

Review the complete list of our investments below:

COVID-19 Relief Fund Investments

Funded in partnership with local donors, corporate partners, community foundations and  Government of Canada’s New Horizons for Seniors program.

Emergency Community Fund Investments

Funded by the Government of Canada.

“As a Crisis Line Responder, I can tell you that there has been a large increase, not only in the number of calls, but in the distress I hear in the voices of those who need support during this COVID19 pandemic. Your gift has allowed me to adapt and overcome many of the challenges I face during this time. I am able to employ new systems and benefit from increased training so that I can safely and efficiently serve an ever-growing number of individuals who need help.”

– Jeff, a volunteer with CMHA Vernon

COVID-19 Response and Recovery in the News

Show your local love and please give generously today.