Countless acts of local love celebrated at Spirit Awards

We couldn’t do it without you! This year United Way will invest over $31 million to transform local lives, thanks largely to our community champions and their inspiring 2017 workplace campaigns.

These funds connect over 400,000 vulnerable people across the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley to vital community supports like United Way after-school programs and seniors’ services, where life-saving connections are made each and every day.

Together, we know the right connection really can change everything.

The money raised through the generosity of United Way donors is a testament to the local love shared across our community. It is proof that together, we can build strong todays and greater tomorrows.

The over $31 million investment total was announced at this week’s 17th annual Scotiabank & United Way Community Spirit Awards. Dr. Lane Trotter, President and CEO of Langara College chaired the 2017 fundraising campaign. Marsha Walden, President and CEO of Destination British Columbia was vice-chair.

“We are thrilled to announce we will be investing over $31 million in our community in 2018,” said Trotter. “That awesome number is a testament to the heart and soul of our community. It was just such a great pleasure to be a part of this and to work with the Cabinet this year.”

The Scotiabank & United Way Community Spirit Awards is a chance to honour and recognize the community change-makers we are thrilled to work with every day.

“Thanks to the hard work of our volunteers and the generosity of our donors, United Way is able to help hundreds of thousands of people living right here in the Lower Mainland,” said Michael McKnight, President & CEO of United Way of the Lower Mainland.

This fun night of celebration also recognizes Top Contributors, organizations, unions and employees that raise over $225,000 for United Way.

Scotiabank has been the title sponsor of this recognition event since its inception in 2002. CTV News anchor Mike Killeen and 94.5 Virgin Radio on-air host Nira Arora emceed the event.

The evening started with a First Nations Welcoming ceremony, which was followed by  guest speaker Sarah, who shared her story of how the right connection changed everything.

Growing up, her father was abusive. After her parents separated, Sarah’s Mom needed support to raise her three kids successfully. The family began attending family dinners at a local United Way-funded neighbourhood house. They would meet weekly to share a healthy and hearty meal. She then began attending an after-school, pre-teen group for girls.

“This program created a safe place for me and other girls, many of whom came from struggling families,” Sarah says. “My new friends couldn’t change 11 years of negative experiences in one day, but they did show me that my abusers were wrong. I belonged.”

We couldn’t do it without the support of the 2017 Scotiabank & United Way Community Spirit Award Winners.

Click here to view the winners!

For photos of the event, click here.

Scotiabank and United Way Spirit Awards Feb 28, 2018

Thank you for sharing your community love!

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