United Way, an international, volunteer-led not-for-profit organization, has 79 local United Ways in Canada. United Way is known as Centraide in Quebec and Ottawa and other French speaking communities across Canada.

Each United Way-Centraide raises money and allocates funds locally to support its community. Each United Way-Centraide is governed by an autonomous local Board of Directors that, with other volunteers and staff, helps build caring, vibrant communities and responds to a broad range of human needs.

We tackle the tough social challenges facing central and northern Vancouver Island communities. We do that by investing in dedicated charities, researching issues in our community to better understand their underlying cause, and partnering with the most effective local organizations who create real change.

We create better community outcomes by:

  1. Engaging existing resources
  2. Focusing on underlying causes of social issues.
  3. Strengthening the existing network of services and increasing the capacity of non-profits

We serve four regions on Vancouver Island:

  • Central Island including Nanaimo, Parksville, Qualicum Beach, Gabriola Island, Cedar, Bowser, Errington, Nanoose Bay, Lantzville, Port Alberni, Tofino, and Ucluelet
  • Cowichan including Duncan, Chemainus, Cowichan Lake, Saltair, Maple Bay, Ladysmith, and Port Renfrew
  • Comox Valley including Comox, Cumberland, Denman Island, Hornby Island, Union Bay, and Royston
  • Campbell River & North Island including Port Hardy, Port Alice, Port McNeill, Sointula, Alert Bay, Woss, Black Creek, Quadra Island, Sayward, Zeballos, Tahsis, and Gold River

From strategy to governance, from fundraising to investing donations: we are led by volunteers. We have a volunteer Board of Directors that guide our decisions; fundraising volunteers; finance volunteers, community investment volunteers; and volunteers who make our impact councils possible. If you're interested in becoming involved, learn about volunteering today!

Yes. United Way and labour work together to promote and co-operate in the establishment of joint labour-management campaigns in the workplace. Find out more about our relationship with organized labour.

Our charitable business number is 119260537RR0001

You can give online—make a one-time gift or become a monthly donor. Your donation will help many people, right in your community.

You can give through your workplace campaign.

You can call us at 250-591-8731 if you’d like to give over the phone.

To donate by mail you can print out and send in a pledge form.

We know how to make your donation count.

Each and every contribution becomes part of a community-building effort to improve social conditions, lift people out of poverty and change lives in our community.

Reach: With a single donation to United Way Central & Northern Vancouver Island, you’re supporting over 90 agencies, delivering hundreds of programs and services. Your donations impact over 50,000 lives each year.

Local Impact: Every dollar you donate is invested directly in your community to improve the lives of the people around you.

Balance: Many small charities and non-profits are doing important and innovative work—and they don’t have the fundraising firepower to fuel that work. United Way's investments give these smaller agencies a chance to grow their organization and have a larger impact.

Community Voice: We bring together organizations, businesses, governments and community members who care about the issues we face in central and northern Vancouver Island. Together, we work to make the greatest impact possible on the most pressing social issues in the region.

United Way and its supporters focus on three areas that provide the best opportunities to create lasting change in our community.

Overcoming Poverty

Successful Kids

Strong Communities

United Way determines where funds will be invested by conducting research to find needs and opportunities in the community. With this understanding, we are able to make sure funds are distributed to address the most urgent issues, which is done through our Impact Councils.

Your investment goes far, but not far away! All donations stay in the regions we serve - Cowichan, Central Island, Comox Valley and Campbell River - to help address key social issues that have been identified by your community.

Yes, and there are many benefits!

Tax Advantages - By donating your appreciated securities or mutual funds directly to United Way you can eliminate your capital gains tax bill.

Reduced Brokerage Fees - Many brokerage houses forego fees for charitable transactions.

Simple and Convenient - Securities are easy to transfer. Your broker transfers the shares from your account to United Way's brokerage account.

Opportunity - An opportunity to make a greater difference in your own community.

Recognition - Your gift can be honoured during your lifetime.

Easily and safely donate your securities today!

Here’s a list of community partners and agencies that we funded in 2018-2019. These organizations work in the areas of poverty, homelessness, children and youth success, keeping families together, and building healthy communities. More information about our investments can be found in our Annual Report.

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