Carleton’s United Way campaign raised more than $160,000 — surpassing its $150,000 goal — showing that the spirit of giving is alive and well on campus.
During the three-week campaign which officially wrapped up on Nov. 13, donors were encouraged to target their money to children and youth programs supported by the United Way. Campaign volunteers worked countless hours organizing events like Loonies for Learning, the Polar Bear Dip, the Giant 50/50 draw and various luncheons held across campus.
“All the hard work has paid off,” says Chantal Dion, co-chair of this year’s Carleton United Way campaign. “I feel pure joy.”
She says that the entire Carleton community should be proud for contributing to the campaign’s success.
“We had office reps in every single unit on campus. There were always people there, reminding other people to get involved.”
Christine Marland, the campaign’s other co-chair, credits Dion’s energy and commitment for making the campaign a success.
“This campaign needs ideas and energy and she has it,” says Marland. “Her interaction with everybody was so positive.”
Despite the campaign’s success, Marland and Dion admit there were some nail-biting moments near the end.
While the campaign kick-off soup lunch attracted hundreds of people and was one of the top fundraisers, Marland says she was nervous a few days before the end of the campaign because the full goal hadn’t been reached.
“I never in my wildest dreams thought that … we would have exceeded our goals.”
Joan Highet, vice-president of campaigns for United Way/Centraide, called Carleton a leader in the Ottawa community.
“People like you make a difference and change our community for the better,” she says. “[Your hard work] allows these people to dream the dreams we have, let these people smile a little more, sleep a little easier and just have a better day.”
Cathy Nolan, of the United Way/Centraide team, added that Carleton’s efforts will have a significant impact on children and youth who use their services.
“These dollars will go to where they’re needed most,” she says. “These contributions are helping real people.”
While Dion and Marland aren’t sure what role they will play in the campaign next year, they hope to get other members of the Carleton community more involved, such as including more retirees and having more student-run events.
“Start early,” Marland says. “The key is having office reps in each unit on campus. It really makes all the difference.”
And she has one final message to the Carleton community that supported to this year’s successful United Way campaign.
“Thank you for taking our campaign over the top. It will make a huge difference in the Ottawa community.”