United Way charity restructures, streamlines operations

United Way restructures

The United Way is streamlining its operations in B.C.

Six United Ways have now merged into a single organization including, Central and Northern Vancouver Island, the Lower Mainland, Thompson Nicola Cariboo, Southern Interior, Trail and District, and East Kootenay.

“By coming together as one organization, we can help more people and make a bigger difference,” said Michael McKnight, CEO of the new organization. “We are excited to amalgamate as a single entity because we will be stronger together. This is the natural next step for us and will help ensure strong, healthy and caring communities.”

“Together we are committed to maintaining local programs and staff in all of our communities,” said Dot Neary, board chair, United Way Central & Northern Vancouver Island. “Donors want to see tangible outcomes at the local level. That’s why dollars raised locally will stay local.”

The organization hopes that by merging, the six United Ways will share resources and expertise across the six regions of the province. Four regional councils will ensure donations are maximized at the local level and the chair of each regional council will sit on the board of directors.

A recent United Way survey of 234 social service agency professionals in B.C. shows three-quarters of the agencies indicate the pandemic has challenged their ability to carry out their work.

The new organization officially begins operations on July 1.

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