What is my donation supporting this year?
Your donation will support kids and families who need it most - right here in our local community. United Way will be investing in Cradle to Career strategies as we move forward, so all donations collected will support kids and their families from the time that they’re born until they find a career.
Why is it important? Because data tells us that in certain neighbourhoods, more than 50% of kids are living in poverty. These are the kids that need help - they need access to healthy and fresh food, they need inspiring places to go after-school, they need mentors to help them open doors and set them on a path to success. Most of all, they need to have the confidence that they can and will achieve their goals.
If you donated to the COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund, your donation supports food bank users, families with children who needed food support over the summer months, backpacks and school supplies for low income families, phone and video counselling sessions, seniors, volunteers, and youth who are isolated at home due to COVID-19 and may need academic support.
What does 'Cradle to Career' mean?
When we say Cradle to Career, we refer to children from the time they are conceived (pre-natal) until they find their first meaningful employment, which is often once they have completed post-secondary education or trades training (early 20s). It means that we’ll work together with the community to figure out why children are struggling in school, why they aren’t graduating high school and going on to post-secondary, and why there are so many children who simply aren’t living up to their full potential.
We’re going to work together with community partners and residents to address the problems in key neighbourhoods in Windsor-Essex County, neighbourhoods that can most benefit from the support, neighbourhoods that are facing significantly more barriers than others – whether it be poverty, educational outcomes or safety factors, to name a few. Our support will wrap around families too, ensuring access to mental and physical health supports, nutrition, adequate housing, transportation, social inclusion, and other factors that can affect a child’s ability to learn and a family’s financial stability.
Can you give an example of the types of programs that United Way will be investing in?
United Way will continue to invest in youth mentoring, and in-person and online after school programming in priority neighbourhoods, technology for school-aged children, online academic supports, mental health counselling, and the food bank network which helps to distribute food to thousands of people in Windsor-Essex County.
We will be working closely with the Federal Government to distribute $1.73 million to local charities to help meet the urgent need of vulnerable people affected by COVID-19. These funds flow through to other charities and do not support the current United Way investments mentioned above. We will continue to help local neighbourhoods where children and families need the most help - Downtown Windsor, West Windsor and Leamington, as we work alongside service providers and residents within these neighbourhoods to co-design solutions to help children reach their full potential. We’ll share more about our investments in these new solutions in late 2021. But here’s a few examples of current investments:
- United Way’s On Track To Success program offers supports that wrap around a family and help kids graduate high school and go on to post-secondary education – students receive mentoring, tutoring, career learning opportunities to name a few. The Program is currently in its sixth year and now supports 106 students in grades 9-12 in Leamington and West Windsor. Trends suggest that by 2030, all jobs will require post-secondary education – be it trades, college or university. Programs like On Track to Success set youth up for success
- WE-STEAM is a program designed to bring science, technology, engineering, art and math directly to kids in our community’s priority neighbourhoods. Working through existing after-school programs, WE-STEAM inspires confidence and cultivates curiosity in these subject areas with a goal of sparking young minds to the possibility of future STEAM-based career fields and 21st Century jobs. This program supported 336 kids over 2 years, many participating in both years of the program.
Why are you investing in specific neighbourhoods?
Based on the 2016 census data, our community has one of the highest rates of child poverty in Canada. In order to make the most impact, we will be starting our investments in three targeted neighbourhoods first – Downtown Windsor, West Windsor and Leamington. In some cases, the rate of childhood poverty is even higher – with more than 50% of the kids living in poverty.
These are the children that are being left behind, the children that are starting behind the finish line by no fault of their own. These are the kids that need the MOST help right now – they need access to healthy and fresh food. They need inspiring, safe places to go after-school. They need mentors to help them open doors and set them on a path to success. Most of all, they need to have the confidence to know that they can and will achieve their goals. They CAN graduate high school. They CAN have the job of their dreams. They CAN live a great life.
By levelling the playing field across these neighbourhoods, we can open doors for kids – we can give them hope and opportunities and the ability to achieve their dreams, whatever those dreams may be – a university or college education, learning a trade – and that benefits our ENTIRE community and our economy. United Way funded programs are already being delivered in these neighbourhoods, so the C2C strategy will help us do more.
How much does the CEO earn?
Our United Way Board conducted a salary review in 2015. Staff salaries, including the CEO, at United Way/Centraide Windsor-Essex County are paid at what the average employee earns at most not-for-profit organizations in our community. Snopes.com, Forbes Magazine, and CharityNavigator.org have also debunked the global administrative costs myth, giving United Way high ratings for financial efficiency.
Our audited financial statements and annual reports are available on our website. United Way/Centraide Windsor-Essex County is 100% local. All donations stay in our community.
To learn more visit the following pages:
Get to know United Way
Our Impact | Annual Report