March 1, 2018
Windsor, ON – United Way donors who pledged to ‘rise up’ in support of local mental health counselling and support programs took to the steps of the WFCU Centre on Wednesday in the 9th annual iClimb for United Way.
A record number of student and adult participants signed on to take part in the signature fundraising 1000-step climb, resulting in raising more than $55,500. The event also helped to raise awareness and bring an end the stigma about seeking mental health supports - 32 schools, and 30 workplace teams and 2,400 individuals joined in for a day of climbing, as well as other mental health-related physical and fun activities.
“Not only does iClimb for United Way help families in need, but it encourages the climbers to improve their own mental wellness through physical activity,” says Lorraine Goddard, CEO of United Way. “I would call that a double success!”
Eugenio, a local service user of a walk-in counselling program supported by United Way says, you can’t realize how valuable counselling can be until you give it a try.
“These programs gave me the opportunity to talk to someone who knows what I’m going through,” says Eugenio. “So many times in my life, I couldn’t see my future… the counselling gave me hope when I didn’t have any. Even when I didn’t believe in myself they believed in me, and that made all the difference.”
Eugenio first attended the walk-in clinic at no charge. After a few one-to-one counselling sessions, he joined a men’s therapy group for ongoing support. He spent the day at iClimb doing Bubble Art and talking with the students. The Art Therapist activity leader worked with student participants to identify not only their strengths, but how to let go of negative self-judgements through art.
It was also a record year for volunteer participation and community partners coming together to run the event, including many police and corrections services partners from across Essex County. Visit United Way’s Facebook and Twitter pages to catch up on all the fun.
United Way’s Counselling and Supports strategy, which helped 2,275 people last year, aims to ensure everyone in Windsor-Essex County knows where to go for counselling, and is able to get the help they need without having to wait or pay more than they can afford. LEARN MORE about United Way’s IMPACT: weareunited.com/StrongCommunities.
Media Contact: Karen Brady, Marketing & Communications Manager
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