Windsor, ON – United Way/Centraide Windsor-Essex County’s Emerging Philanthropists (EP) hosted its second annual UNevent fundraiser this week, raising $32,750 towards the launch of the Ujima initiative for Black youth in United Way’s On Track to Success program. Earlier this week, UNevent wrapped up a month-long fundraising campaign to celebrate all those who donated to support the virtual event instead of spending their money on an expensive night out.
Community members participated in the unique virtual fundraising campaign by donating to United Way and posting their unique #UNEVENT4UJIMA picture on social media. On Track to Success students joined in to share their experiences earlier in the week to discuss how the Ujima initiative will impact Black youth in meaningful ways. Community partners from Libro Credit Union and the University of Windsor also provided their perspective on the launch of this new initiative: https://fb.watch/9DngU9SDbl/
The Ujima initiative is an equity strategy that will provide cultural support and programs for Black youth. It was designed based on best practices and feedback from Black students and caregivers in the On Track to Success program. The program will provide the following:
- Community mentoring to build positive character development – students will be paired with an adult mentor from the Black community to learn from and expand their network.
- Mental wellness support to provide a safe and positive environment where students will learn about the importance of self-care and effective coping strategies.
- Cultural exploration to educate students about the elements that bind the Black community together, as well as the accomplishments and barriers that the Black community has overcome together.
- Social events to provide a safe space where students can socialize and get to know each other.
In addition to On Track’s goal of increasing high school graduation rates and post-secondary enrollment, the Ujima initiative outcomes include increased school attendance, community connections and resources, improved academic performance, as well as self-reported improvement in mental wellness and self-esteem.
“The Ujima Initiative aims to provide a more culturally relevant program to students in our On Track to Success program,” says Lorraine Goddard, CEO, United Way/Centraide Windsor-Essex County. “We’re very grateful to the donors, sponsors and the Emerging Philanthropists team for delivering another successful UNevent.”
The Emerging Philanthropists are still looking for community support to reach their fundraising goal of $40,000. To show your local love by contributing to the launch of the Ujima Initiative of On Track to Success, or to learn more, visit weareunited.com/epunevent and follow EP on Instagram and Twitter. Show us where you were when you decided to make a donation and impact the life of a student, by using the hashtag #UNEVENT4UJIMA
Earlier this month, the Gordie Howe International Bridge project team donated $40,000 through the Community Benefits Plan in support of United Way’s Ujima initiative as well. Through their gift and the donations that were raised through UNevent, United Way will be able to successfully launch the initiative in local high schools in early 2022.
Special thanks to all those who made the UNevent possible: the EP fundraising committee, our sponsors including Libro Credit Union who provided funds to match donations; the University of Windsor Office of Equity, Diversity & Inclusion; Enwin Utilities; Hub Customer Central; and the Windsor Star.
Emerging Philanthropists is a group for young leaders in their 20s and 30s who want to give back to their community through United Way. Learn more about how you can be a part of creating positive change in your community through the Emerging Philanthropists group at www.weareunited.com/emergingphilanthropists.
Angela Kharboutli, Manager, Marketing & Communications
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