Alzheimer’s disease, mental-health issues, loneliness, suicidal thoughts, a child’s grief at the loss of a parent, spousal abuse — all these are among the many needs in Oakville addressed by 33 United Way agencies, which last year helped 30,000 people in town.

United Way provided these agencies with core funding, to give them the security to focus on helping people. The needs they address are irrespective of economic status or family resources.

United Way agencies address such a wide variety of needs it is highly probable that at some point in each of our lives, or at least in the lives of someone close to us, we will need the help of a United Way-funded agency.

Some of these agencies also deal with the consequences of poverty, in particular on the basic needs of children whose families are facing hardship — in Oakville, more than 20,000 people live in poverty.

The health of our community depends on the hard work of the staff and volunteers at these agencies providing online pharmacy without prescription services that complement those of government and health-care institutions.

This is the time of year when the United Way brings us all together to provide these committed people with the resources to focus on those in need.

We all need these agencies to be strong and effective, so we all need to give to United Way.

This year, as you look forward to the holidays, and your thoughts turn to giving, please consider being generous to United Way.

Our goal this year is $4.2 million, an increase over last year’s, but still not enough to meet all the needs that exist in our community, as in any other.

When you look at where best to invest your charitable giving, consider that United Way Oakville is an independent organization — all the funds remain in Oakville.

Relying on a wide network of hard-working volunteers and supportive businesses, United Way Oakville is able to raise funds and administer them for 20 cents on the dollar; much better than the Canadian charitable sector average of 32 cents.

That means 80 cents of every dollar you give goes to the agencies to be put to work in our community.

The strength of United Way is in the numbers of donors. Many donations, small and large, add up to help us help more people.

Please, ask yourself if you will miss the amount more than those in need will feel the benefit. Be as generous as you can.

Uniquely in Oakville, the generosity of the Sprott Foundation matches new donations of $1,000 or more, and increases on past leadership donations.

If you are fortunate enough to be able to contribute at that level, you can make your gift do even more good.

Your gift to the United Way helps Oakville be a healthy, safe, caring community.

Encourage your employer to support the United Way and please consider directing some of your generosity to United Way Oakville.

Visit to donate online or call 905-845-5571.

Thank you.

— Submitted by Chris Stoate, Campaign Cabinet Chair, United Way Oakville

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