Poverty to Possibility

When people are financially stable, they aren’t worried about their next meal, how they’re going to pay their rent, or whether they’ll be able to afford a coat for their kids. But for those living on a low income, these worries follow them around on a daily basis. For people living in poverty, opportunities to build a good life—including access to meaningful social networks, good jobs, and affordable housing—aren’t equally available. Poverty touches almost every aspect of people’s lives—from food, shelter, and employment to mental and physical well-being.

This is why United Way works to ensure people have access to food, shelter, employment opportunities, and a chance to stabilize their income—affording them opportunities to build a good life.

Our Investments

United Way invested $622,895 in 2018/19 within 20 programs to build financial stability and independence for individuals and families.

Did You Know?


Is the poverty rate in Victoria.


People in Greater Victoria are food insecure, living with fear and worry, not knowing where their next meals may come from, and unable to afford healthy food options.

1 in 4

Victoria residents spend more than half of their income on rent.


BC has one of the highest poverty rates in the country and its under-six poverty rate has been higher than the national rate since 2002. Employment opportunities are limited and the cost of living continues to rise. Too many people are struggling to make ends meet and for others basic needs are beyond their reach.


To support people living in poverty by providing resources and opportunities for them to build better their lives and become more self-sufficient.


United Way believes that poverty can be alleviated. The journey towards self-sufficiency starts with a network of essential programs. Whether it’s helping people off the street find housing, providing job training or creating financial security, United Way funded programs provide a ‘hand up’ to people who are moving towards independence.

A place to find comfort

A drop-in centre helped Mike find stable housing—and a community too.

“Have compassion when you see people out there who have problems. Offer a few nice words instead of turning a blind eye. Who knows—by making somebody smile, maybe they’ll make somebody else smile. And if everybody starts smiling, life gets better.”