Strong Communities

A community is only as strong as the sum of its parts, and strong, supportive, and inclusive communities are vital to a thriving region. But in too many neighbourhoods across Greater Victoria, local residents are dealing with complex issues that prevent them from building a good life.

For people living on a low income, or those facing critical social issues like domestic violence, social exclusion, mental health challenges, and intergenerational trauma, opportunities to build a good life aren’t equally available. And we want to change that.

Because poverty is clustered in certain neighbourhoods, United Way is building a foundation for strong communities by investing in services and supports that strengthen and connect all residents. To address these complex issues, United Way invests in vital, community-based resources that help change lives. Together, we’re creating strong neighbourhoods where everyone has a sense of belonging.

Our Investments

United Way invested $901,280 in 2018/19 within 33 programs to improve the quality of life for individuals and families facing challenges of isolation, addictions and personal crisis.

Did You Know?

1 in 4

People on Vancouver Island have mental health challenges, whether it be depression or anxiety disorders that compromise their lifestyles and their well-being.

1 of 3

Victoria is 1 of 3 cities in BC which experienced the highest number of suicides in 2016.

60%

British Columbians personally know at least one woman who has been sexually or physically assaulted.

Trend

Healthy individuals and families are the backbone of strong communities. When people have the opportunity to connect with others and access services in their neighbourhoods they are more likely to overcome life’s challenges. However, there are a growing number of people across the region that suffer from social isolation and don’t have access to the vital services they need.

Strategy

To build the overall health and well-being of our communities by ensuring that people have access to the resources they need to lead healthier lives. United Way works to create lasting change by addressing the social conditions that leave people vulnerable.

Goal

United Way supports critical social programs that improve people’s lives – like mental health and addiction services, programs that address domestic violence, supports for people who face isolation especially seniors and people with disabilities, and initiatives that help newcomers settle into their new lives.

“I no longer feel like a burden on society.”

When AJ was nine or 10, he was diagnosed with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). That led to anxiety and depression.

Growing up, he was in the gifted program at school, but was getting into shouting matches with his teachers. By the time he was in grade 10, he had dropped out.