At our Campaign Kick-Off event held this afternoon on Fourth Street in Chatham, United Way Chatham Kent Co-Chairs William Grin and Cecily Coppola gathered their 2013 Cabinet.  They were joined by community supporters, United Way staff, Pacesetter contributors and campaign volunteers to announce the goal for the 2013 Campaign at $2,200,000. 

In an earlier interview, Coppola commented on the 9% increase over last year’s total ($2,045,843).  “United Way Chatham-Kent has changed so much over the past fifteen years.  Their expanding role in effecting community impact and positive social change features a number of important programs and services offered in-house. As they have for 65 years, they continue to support locally, through the Community Fund, 25 Chatham-Kent programs, services and agencies. Together, these efforts touch the lives of one in three people in our community.  

Taken as a whole, that’s a lot of community connecting; a lot of community supports.  In order to ensure the needs of our Funded Agencies and Direct Service Programs are met, United Way is looking to close the gap in funding. In 2012, although we met our target, we were still $200,000 shy of the reported need.  This year we are going to do all we can to close that gap”. 

William Grin is a longtime supporter of United Way, having served for many years on the Board of Directors, the Fund Distribution team and the Cabinet.  “There is no doubt that this challenge – to close the gap in funding needs – is a challenge this generous community can easily understand and will be ready to help with.  Every dollar that is spent on programs and services for prevention of injury, prevention of hunger, prevention of depression and isolation will result in significant savings on treatment services.  Cecily and I have visited these agencies. They understand that by becoming involved earlier they can make lasting differences and positive changes.  We have seen the results and we know their work deserves all of our support.” 

Kick-Off Highlights

Municipal Greetings were offered by Councillor Derek Robertsen.

Pacesetter pledges were offered by William Grin, United Way’s Board and Staff, GreenField Ethanol and Union Gas, Chatham-Kent Amazing Racers and the Sydenham Challenge Dragon Boat Racers, Bushels of Hope supporters Lynn Girty and Leon LeClair, Scotiabank, the Canadian Hearing Society, The Solid Rock Café Youth Centre, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Chatham-Kent, Restorative Justice of Chatham-Kent, Family Service Kent, VON, and Chatham-Kent Block Parent Program. 

For information how YOU can participate as an individual, as a volunteer or with your company or organization please contact Cecily Coppola at (519) 380-0931 ext. 11 or William Grin at (519) 352-9555.  Visit our new and improved website at or email us