United Way achieves year one fundraising goal of $5.01 million!

VICTORIA, BC – United Way has reached one-third of its three-year fundraising goal of $15 million. In 2017, $5.01 million was raised by workplaces, organization and individual donors in support of United Way Greater Victoria.

The milestone was announced at United Way’s annual Spirit Awards today.  Funds raised will be invested in programs and services to benefit kids, youth, families and seniors from Victoria to Sooke to Sidney and the Southern Gulf Islands.

Bruce Williams, community engagement professional and Mike Eso, President of Victoria Labour Council, co-led the 2017 campaign. Al Hasham, President & CEO of Maximum Express Courier and Max Furniture, will lead community fundraising efforts as Community Campaign Chair in 2018.

The annual United Way Spirit Awards recognizes and thanks donors and workplaces for their ongoing community support. In 2017, 235 workplaces ran United Way fundraising campaigns. 

 Altogether 13 United Way Spirit Awards were presented. The most prestigious award, the Chair’s Award of Distinction, was given to David Curtis, President & CEO, Viking Air Limited. The award showcases an individual for their extraordinary commitment to United Way’s community campaign through the workplace and individual giving.

 The fundraising goal announcement was an important achievement for Patricia Jelinski, President & CEO, United Way Greater Victoria. Jelinski will be leaving the organization as of May 1 to pursue a new opportunity outside the non-profit sector. Jelinski has led the non-profit organization for four years and an interim CEO arrangement drawn from the internal leadership team will be announced shortly.

 “We thank Patricia for her tremendous leadership. She has transformed the organization and set United Way on a solid path for the future. We wish her the best in her new position,” said Ivan Watson, Board Chair, United Way Greater Victoria. “Today is a day to celebrate and thank our donors. None of the vital work that United Way does here in Victoria and the Capital Regional District would be possible without them. United Way will continue to change lives for the better here in our community because of their generosity.”

United Way would like to thank Chemistry Consulting and in particular, principles Frank Bourree and Christine Willow for ongoing support of the Spirit Awards Luncheon. Chemistry Consulting is a proud supporter of United Way, not only as a corporate partner but also contributing $70,500 towards the community through their workplace campaign since 2006.


  • Outstanding Employee Campaign Chair (organization over 100 employees): Knappett Projects – Kathy Price
  • Outstanding Employee Campaign Chair (organization under 100 employees): Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce – Sophie Clodge and Emara Angus
  • Outstanding Campaign Committee Spirit Award: Queen Alexandra Centre for Children’s Health – Island Health – Hospital Employee Union SVI, HSABC
  • Leadership Giving Spirit Award: Fairmont Empress – Unifor 4276
  • Community Impact Spirit Award: Island Health and Affiliated Unions
  • Community Partner Spirit Award: Community Living Victoria – Hospital Employees Union SVI
  • Labour Partnership Spirit Award: Natural Resources Canada – Pacific Forestry Centre – PIPSC Victoria, PIPSC RES, and PSAC UEW 20169
  • Post-Secondary Challenge Cup – Camosun College (BCGEU 701; Camosun College Faculty Association; CUPE 2081)
  • Financial Challenge Cup – BMO Bank of Montreal
  • Municipal Challenge Cup – Capital Regional District – CUPE 1978
  • Naden Band Spirit of Excellence Award: Victoria Labour Council
  • Outstanding Workplace Spirit Award: Royal Roads University – CUPE 3886, RRUFA
  • Chair’s Award of Distinction: David Curtis, President & CEO, Viking Air Limited

Follow United Way on Twitter: @uwgv


For more information, please contact:

Jennifer Young
Director, Marketing and Communications
United Way
Work: (250) 984-2269
Email: jennifer.young@uwgv.ca

Patricia Jelinski, CEO
United Way
Work: (250) 220-7364
Cell: (250) 217-8698
Email: patricia.jelinski@uwgv.ca 

BACKGROUND: United Way ‘unites’ the generosity of people – business, labour, government and individual donors – with the skills, knowledge and expertise in the community to help those in need. This collaborative approach is building a stronger, more resilient community to serve current and future generations. 

As one of the region’s largest annual funder of local social service programs, we assist charitable organizations by identifying and funding programs to address immediate needs and underlying causes of our community’s most pressing social challenges.

We are active in the community all year round through fundraising and community building, and provide multi-year funding to create a strong and stable network of local services. For more than 80 years we have served the community and raised over $165 Million.  Our work, as a community leader, is as relevant today as it ever was.  And with the ongoing support of our donors, we will continue to changes lives.