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United Way Greater Toronto on pace to reach $110M campaign goal, makes bold five-year re-investment in community

Daniele Zanotti, CEO of United Way Greater Toronto and Darryl White, CEO of BMO Financial Group and United Way 2022 Community Campaign Chair, announce that the organization will reach its $110M goal.
  • UWGT will successfully reach its 2022 Community Campaign goal of $110 million thanks to 2200 volunteers from over 800 workplaces, and 80,000 generous donors. 
  • Because of this generous community giving, UWGT announced five-year funding commitment of $33 million to 65 Anchor agencies delivering 208 programs across Peel, Toronto and York Region. 
  • In addition, UWGT will continue its investments including through the Community Program Grants and continue to deepen investments in Indigenous, Black and other structurally disadvantaged groups. 

February 22, 2023 (Toronto, ON) – At United Way Greater Toronto’s Local Leaders Celebration last night, CEO Daniele Zanotti alongside Community Campaign Chair Darryl White and hundreds of supporters announced that the organization will meet its $110 million goal. The generous support means that United Way Greater Toronto shared their bold plans for a $33 million re-investment in community. Sixty-five agencies delivering 208 programs across Peel, Toronto and York Region were awarded renewals of five-year flexible funding to fight growing local poverty.  

Across Peel, Toronto and York, United Way Greater Toronto funds and partners with a balanced portfolio of poverty-fighting anchor agencies to meet needs where they are greatest, respond to changes in our community, and build lasting solutions to critical issues at the intersection of poverty, equity and geography. 

Anchor funding is a unique-to-United-Way model that offers longer term flexible funding for programming and core operational support. As United Way recognizes the importance of supporting agency infrastructure, the funding builds long-term capacity within these organizations and delivers solutions to meaningfully move the needle on poverty issues in our region. Flexible funding also ensures that as community and resident needs evolve these agencies can negotiate a shift in funding priorities to quickly mobilize a solution, such as responding to an unexpected crisis like the pandemic, supporting refugees, or providing food and clothes. 

This achievement ensures United Way Greater Toronto can also continue investments through the Community Program Grants and by making additional investments to Indigenous, Black and other structurally disadvantaged groups later this year. United Way will also continue to push solutions at the neighbourhood-level including the Inclusive Local Economic Opportunity (ILEO) Initiative, co-convened by BMO Financial Group.  

Last year, over two million people accessed the services and programs funded by United Way Greater Toronto and the number is expected to increase for 2023 as most agencies are seeing spikes in demand—particularly from first-time visitors.  

Thanks to the generosity of 2200 volunteers from over 800 workplaces, and 80,000 donors to United Way Greater Toronto’s Community Campaign 2022, the social safety net will be there to support.  


United Way Greater Toronto is committed to taking bold actions and investing to tackle the root causes of poverty in our local neighbourhoods. Through the generous support of volunteers, workplaces and donors, we can rally post-pandemic to meet the needs of those most affected by poverty: Indigenous, Black and other equity-deserving groups. United Way Greater Toronto knows that individually, we can make a difference, but united — we can change the future of Peel, Toronto and York so everyone has the supports they need, close to home.

Daniele Zanotti, Chief Executive Officer, United Way Greater Toronto.

Serving as Campaign Chair for the United Way Greater Toronto has been a tremendous honour. The success of this year’s campaign would not have been possible without the hard work and significant contributions of the members of our Campaign Cabinet, the support of workplaces across the GTA, and generous individual donors. I support United Way because of the tangible impact made by the agencies and programs they enable. Today’s announcement of multi-year funding to 65 community agencies serving residents across the GTA represents a major contribution to the strength and sustainability of our social safety net. Facing unprecedented demand for their services, these agencies are the front-line heroes that help our community continue to make progress— I’m proud that 80,000 residents across Peel, Toronto and York responded, stood up for their community, and delivered record generosity this year.

Darryl White, Chief Executive Officer, BMO Financial Group and Chair of the UWGT Community Campaign 2022 

As we saw during the pandemic, and as we see in our frontline work from season to season, the intersectional needs on the ground are in constant motion, and change. As an UWGT Anchor Agency Partner together we can navigate the complexities of the existing and emerging demands of the community, bringing local voices to the table. This flexibility ensures resources are allocated in the way that will most benefit the community, in the moment of need.

Utcha Sawyers, Chief Executive Officer, BGC East Scarborough

United Way Greater Toronto “gets it” when it comes to building the social safety net—we can’t simply rely on government funding; we need to build community, connect people, reduce isolation, and build civic muscle—these are all “protective factors” that UW “gets” when it comes to funding the social safety net. In these days of heightened anxiety—COVID, traumatic world events, and a risky economy—anyone of us can be impacted and need relief, support and the help that UWGT anchor agencies provide.

Elisha Laker, Chief Executive Officer, Family Services York Region 

Five-year flexible Anchor agency funding helps our organization plan for the future. It helps us move out of response mode, and into prevention – getting at the root causes of poverty – so we can stop further harms from happening to people. We want to end the need for help.

Maureen Fair, Executive Director, West Neighbourhood House 

With rising operating costs and deepening need across Peel, United Way anchor agency funding allows our organization to strategically plan on a trajectory that is impossible with one- or two-year funding. We’re widening the scope of our poverty reduction team for the next five years, providing a guaranteed position and benefits, so we can be more responsive to the community needs as they evolve.

Priyanka Sheth, Executive Director, Dixie Bloor Neighbourhood Centre

The United Way funding we receive helps children to get a good start in kindergarten, provides counselling to kids in shelters to help them cope at a very stressful time in their lives, supports youth to connect through music and photography and builds parents capacity to better support their children. In addition to funding critical services we’d otherwise not be able to provide, United Way is a vital partner in working to address inequities that prevent all Toronto residents from achieving healthy and prosperous lives.

Janet McCrimmon, Chief Executive Officer, Strides Toronto

Media Contact:

Lindsay Kwan
Manager, Communications – United Way Greater Toronto

About United Way: As the largest non-government funder of community services in the GTA, United Way Greater Toronto reinforces a crucial community safety net to support people living in poverty. United Way’s network of agencies and initiatives in neighbourhoods across Peel, Toronto and York Region works to ensure that everyone has access to the programs and services they need to thrive. Mobilizing community support, United Way’s work is rooted in ground-breaking research, strategic leadership, local advocacy and cross-sectoral partnerships committed to building a more equitable region and lasting solutions to the GTA’s greatest challenges.  

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