Friday, January 22, 2010

Toronto breaks fundraising record for United Way. T.O. Ranked number one fundraiser in North America!

TORONTO — In a time of great uncertainty and heightened need, the people of Toronto have responded with a stunning demonstration of community commitment and compassion, United Way President and CEO Frances Lankin said tonight as the charity announced a record fundraising achievement of $109 Million.
Historic result surpasses United Way campaign goal by $1.5-million
United Way Toronto's 2009 Campaign surpassed the $107.5-million goal it set in the fall by $1.5-million. Lankin read out a letter from Brian Gallagher President and CEO of United Way Worldwide, congratulating United Way Toronto for having the largest campaign achievement in North America last year.

“With the city in recession last year and uncertain times ahead, the pressure on people and families is great. The community responded with compassion and unparalleled generosity helping United Way reach its highest achievement ever,” Lankin said. “We're here tonight to thank everyone who stood with us and stood with the community from the beginning,” she said.
“From the bottom of our hearts, thank you.”

Lankin was joined by United Way's Campaign Chair, Bill Downe, President and CEO BMO Financial Group.
“When people living in Toronto need help, more often than not, it's a United Way agency that gets the call.  It takes a lot of money to fund these agencies — it also takes the dedication of many people and volunteers.  They and the people they serve bring meaning to our campaign efforts” said Downe. “On behalf of the Campaign Cabinet, I would like to thank every donor – you have shown great kindness and given so much to help make the work of United Way agencies possible.”
Lankin noted that tonight's event was the capstone on a week of achievements for United Way. She pointed to significant progress in United Way's Building Strong Neighbourhoods Strategy with the opening of the first Community Hub in Eglinton East/Kennedy Park, the first of eight hubs planned for the priority neighbourhoods.
“This campaign reminded us that united we can make a difference in our city. But we most certainly can't do it alone,” said Lankin. “In 2009, we were reminded that tough times bring out the best in people, and the unwavering generosity and commitment of the thousands who worked so hard this year for their community will go a long way to strengthen the social fabric that unites us all.”

CBC Broadcaster and host of CBC Radio's Here and Now, Matt Galloway hosted the dinner held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
The money raised will provide stable funding to United Way's network of 200 health and social service agencies across Toronto that are providing the urgent services people need most during tough economic times. Funds from the 2009 campaign will also support United Way's long term efforts to strengthen the 13 priority neighbourhoods through its Building Strong Neighbourhoods Strategy.
Established in 1956, United Way Toronto is a charity working to advance the common good and create opportunities for a better life for everyone in our city. Working in partnership with others, we mobilize people and resources to address the root causes of social problems and to change community conditions for the better. United Way supports agencies that provide services to strengthen individuals, families, and communities.

We think it is fantastic that Toronto ranked so high on the North American scale of things. That says a lot about the character and dedication of Torontonians. What do you think?

Did you contribute to the United Way campaign or other community support organizations in 2009? Do you have any plans to set aside some money and or time to help out your local community in 2010?

At FRANK, we are passionate about great ideas that drive social purpose. We love breaking new ground, combining great ideation with innovative technology and using it all to leverage the power of social media to successfully drive these ideas forward. Do you have any great, unique or highly original fundraising ideas that tap into the power of the community to achieve wonderful things for the greater good?

Feel free to share with us your ideas and experiences. Currently we are working on some terrific mobile applications that for a very, very low cost will really help drive the efforts of the social purpose crowd. Maybe there is a way we can leverage some of those tools to help support you and your cause. Give us a call or send us an e-mail.

To find out more about the Building Strong Neighbourhoods Strategy, read the coverage the United Way received in last Saturday's Toronto Star:

Media contact:
Caitlin Stidwill
United Way Toronto
Desk - 416 777 1444 ex 396
Mobile - 416-525-5632

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