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United Way launches annual summer programs across Windsor-Essex County

June 20, 2022

Windsor, ON – United Way/Centraide Windsor-Essex County launches their annual summer programs fundraising campaign this month. Summer Eats for Kids provides children and families living in low-income with nutritious food during the summer months when school nutrition programs are closed. The Backpacks for Success program provides students in kindergarten through grade 12 in Windsor-Essex with backpacks filled with grade-appropriate supplies they need for school.

“To help children succeed, we need to ensure that families have equitable access to nutritious food and the supplies they need for school,” says Lorraine Goddard, CEO of United Way. “This year, we hope to increase the amount raised for summer programs in West Windsor, Downtown Windsor and Leamington as the need continues to grow.”

United Way is asking for community support to raise $110,000 for Summer Eats for Kids and $40,000 for Backpacks for Success. United Way’s Women United group is also collecting 5,000 new and gently used books to hand out through these programs.

Summer Eats for Kids – Since the beginning of the pandemic, data shows that more people have been accessing food banks. Approximately 9,000 new people visited the largest local food bank hub from April 2020 to March 2021. In Windsor-Essex, 1 in 3 food bank users are children. Our goal is to provide 3,200 boxes of food and 8,250 lunches to children and families in our community this summer.

For just $25 you can support a family with a week’s worth of nutritious fruits, vegetables and snacks. To donate to the program or host a fundraiser visit

Backpacks for Success – Back-to-school season is an exciting time for many children as they look forward to the year ahead. Unfortunately, some children don’t have access to the supplies and resources they need for a successful school year. Our goal is to provide 2,000 children in Windsor-Essex County with backpacks for school in September.

Providing kids with back-to-school supplies increases classroom participation, attendance and student morale. For just $25, donors can support one backpack filled with school supplies. It’s easy to donate at

Program Locations and Hours:

Summer Eats for Kids runs July 5 to August 25, 2022 on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the following locations:


  • Marlborough Public School
  • St. Angela’s Catholic Elementary
  • St. Louis Catholic Elementary (Leamington)


  • West Gate Public School
  • Dougall Ave. Public School
  • Frank W. Begley Public School

Backpacks for Success will be collecting school supplies and book donations throughout the summer at the United Way office at 300 Giles Blvd. E, Unit A1 on Mondays from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Fridays from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. between July 8 and August 12, 2022 or by contacting Susan Merryfield at United Way at 519-259-6177 to arrange an alternate drop off time. Donations of lined paper, coloured pencils, binders, backpacks and scientific calculators are welcome. Only new backpacks and school supplies will be accepted. Both new and gently used books are welcomed.

Backpacks will be distributed to students through United Way and other local community programs this year. There will not be a public distribution day, as in past years.

Media Contact: 

Kristina Stojkovski, Marketing & Communications Specialist  |  W: 519-259-6188 |  C: 519-982-8291

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Last updated on March 28, 2024

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