United Way Month kicks off with flag raising

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October 6, 2015 8:15 AM

Lloydminster and District United Way Month was set in motion on Oct. 1 with a flag-raising ceremony at city hall to help promote and raise awareness of the organization and its upcoming fundraising initiatives.

“It’s been great. Everyone knows that United Way Month starts with Oct. 1, with our flag raising and it gets all of us excited, and everyone in the community, with our events,” said Arshi Mirza, campaign chair for United Way. “We see a lot of support and we come up with different ideas every year.”

Two of this year’s events include a steak night being held at the Canadian Brewhouse on Oct. 6, where $10 of every $20 ticket sold goes back to United Way. They will also be having a breakfast event on Oct. 20 where the organization will deliver breakfasts to businesses at $5 per person, changing it up this year from having the event at a fixed location. This move will make things more convenient for those interested and has already seen a lot of support coming in.

Mirza describes United Way as an “umbrella” group that collects donations from the community and through various events, then puts the funds back into the community through its member agencies by funding their specific programs.

“They send us a proposal on what program they want us to fund…,” said Mirza. “We have an allocations committee that’s apart from our board, they decide and look at the financials for the agencies and see which agencies should get how much. That way we’re able to take from the community and give back to the community, that’s the biggest thing.”

Mayor Rob Saunders, who was on hand for the flag raising, says United Way is an essential part of the community and that the city and the organization have enjoyed a long lasting relationship.

“United Way is very important to our community because it helps support many of the organizations that are providing services,” he said. “The flag raising is to let everyone in the community know that there’s some fundraising initiatives going on, and just letting people know that it’s highly beneficial to the community to help support the United Way. There’s so many different member agencies that belong to this group, so your money is well-spent in the different areas and provided to a lot of these organizations.”

For more information on United Way or to purchase tickets for their events call 780-875-3743 or email office@lloydminster.unitedway.ca.

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