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$5.9 million raised by United Way

Jan 26 2012

The 2011 United Way campaign has finished at $5.9 million, short of the $6.3-million goal.

The campaign total, 94 per cent of the fundraising target, was announced Wednesday night at the Victoria Conference Centre.

United Way chief executive officer Linda Hughes said falling short of the goal does nothing to affect the organization's efforts on behalf of the programs it supports. For 2012, the United Way has already earmarked nearly $5 million for 68 community partners that oversee 117 programs.

"We may have been a bit behind in achieving [our] goal, but we're absolutely committed to our community partners and the great work that they do," Hughes said.

Children, families, adults in need and seniors are all helped by the programs under the United Way umbrella.

The 2011 campaign was launched in September. It followed a 2010 campaign that surpassed its $6.2-million goal, with a $6.21-million total.

The upcoming year is special one for the United Way in Greater Victoria, which will mark its 75th year of service in the capital region. The year will include community celebrations with two municipalities that are also marking anniversaries — Victoria turns 150 and Esquimalt reaches 100 — as well as a youth art exhibition and a speaker series.

Spirit Awards for companies, organizations and individuals making notable contributions to the 2012 campaign were also announced Wednesday. The winners were:

- Community Partners Spirit Award — Island Deaf & Hard of Hearing

- Employee Campaign of the Year — HP Advanced Solutions

- First Time Campaign — Acheson Whitley Sweeney Foley

- Labour Participation Award — Victoria Labour Council

- Quantum Leap Award (biggest increase from the previous year) — Canadian Food Inspection Agency

- Leadership Campaign Award — CIBC

- Leadership Chair Award — Lorena Milkert, CIBC

- Employee Campaign Chair Award — John Fawcett, Greater Victoria school district

- Canvasser/Canvasser Co-ordinator Award — Cindy Chartier, Civilian Human Resource Centre-Naden 54

- Outstanding Campaign Committee (for team spirit, results and following campaign guidelines) — Times Colonist

- Education and Engagement — Natural Resources Canada

- Post Secondary Challenge Award — Royal Roads University

- Triple Crown Award (improvement in three categories) — HMCS Vancouver, HMCS Regina

- Naden Band Spirit of Excellence Award — Canada Revenue Agency

- Half-Million Dollar Spirit Award (for raising over $500,000) — Department of National Defence

jwbell@timescolonist.com

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