United Way campaign shows signs of strengthening

Positive surprises help close gap on last year's pace

Employees from the Bank of Montreal on London Road in Sarnia hold a United Way kickoff breakfast following several employee presentations by the United Way. In 2016, more than 90% of BMO employees in Sarnia-Lambton donated in the fundraising campaign at the workplace. Currently, the United Way of Sarnia-Lambton has reached 83% of the $2M goal.

The United Way of Sarnia-Lambton campaign is showing signs of positive energy this week as it now has reached 83% of the $2,000,000 goal.

We have had some positive surprises this week and we are closing the gap of where we were at this time last year.   Up until last week, and for much of the 2017 campaign, we were running five or six percent behind last year.  Today, we are lagging last year’s pace by only 2%.

Shell employees wrapped up their campaign and with the matching corporate donation, we have landed at 83%, or $1,660,000.  Shell Canada is the area’s third largest employee campaign and the second largest that match dollar for dollar all employee and retiree donations.

Later this week, we are anticipating the NOVA Chemical employee campaign numbers, the county’s second-largest employee drive with the largest corporate match.  Originally thought to be down, we are now thinking the NOVA Chemicals final numbers may be equal or perhaps even higher than last year.  Those results should be known Thursday or Friday.

ALANXEO and Pembina, two other matching employee campaigns and are expected to wrap up in the next week or so as well.

Canada Border Services just wrapped up their employee campaign with a back sale on Thursday and raised over $6,500.

A number of other campaigns also wrapped up which assisted in the growth of the campaign this past week.

Most of our attention now has turned to the first ever United Way Drewlo Stair Climb at Marina Park Place on Sandy Lane in Sarnia on December 14 from 3:00 PM until 5:00 PM.  This is a first for us and we believe this can be an annual event based on the successes we’ve seen elsewhere.  We are asking all participants to collect sponsors totally $50 or more.

Pledge sheets and registration forms can be downloaded from the United Way website at www.theunitedway.on.ca, or from the United Way Facebook event page.  Participants can also stop by the United Way office at 420 East Street North in Sarnia, or call 519-336-5452.

Many of the area banks have just begun their campaign, as has City of Sarnia and Lambton College.  Bank of Montreal, in particular, has had a number of presentations including events at many of the Sarnia-Lambton branches.

Clearly, the momentum in the campaign has swung and is looking much more positive that even a week ago.  We still have a long way to go, and raising the final $340,000 will be a challenge.  We are remaining hopeful and are continuing to begin new campaigns everywhere we can to get closer to that $2,000,000 target.

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