What's New


Thank a Teacher – Buy a Backpack

Are you considering a teacher’s gift and stuck on how to say thank you for a great school year?

Consider giving your child’s teacher the gift of giving back.

By making a $15 donation, you will purchase a backpack full of school supplies in support of United Way Peterborough’s Back Pack for Kids program.

The teacher will be given a certificate in their name and in September, this backpack will be given to a student in need to ensure they are ready to learn with a backpack full of school supplies.

Sometimes the best way to show gratitude to someone is to pay it forward.

For more information or to purchase a Backpack, call United Way Peterborough at 705-742-8839 x32 and ask for Stephanie.

Click here to download a donation form!


Paint the Town Red – Save the Date

Paint the Town Red is back for its 6th year on Wednesday July 18th, 2018

Since 2013, over $60,000 has been generously donated by local restaurants, cafes and pubs to United Way Peterborough & District and invested right back into our community.

Local businesses who participate in 2018 Paint the Town Red event will generously donate 25% of their net sales from Wednesday July 18th, 2018,

If you would like to participate, please  read our official invitation letter for details and confirm by contacting Erica (erichmond@uwpeterborough.ca)  by June 20th, 2018.

Thanks to our Confirmed Participants for 2018 #PaintPtboRed
(come back often – this list just keeps growing!)

Ashburnham Ale House
B.E. Catering
Black Honey
Brio Gusto
Chick-A-Biddy Acres (Wednesday Market)
Cora Breakfast & Lunch
Dodrio Bubble Tea and Anime Cafe
Fresh Dreams
Hobart’s Steak House
Hunter County Cuisine
Island Cream
Jeff Purvey’s (Rubidge Street)
Kawartha Dairy (scooped cones only – High Street location)
La Hacienda
La Mesita
Night Kitchen
Pita Pit – George Street
Sam’s Place
Silver Bean
St. Veronus
Sunset Grill
Tiny Greens
Tre Ristorante
Turnbull Cafe


United Way Supports Grassroots Community Projects Through Its Neighbourhood Fund

United Way of Peterborough & District announced the recipients of the organization’s Neighbourhood Fund launched in February 2018. A total of $25,000 will be shared between twelve (12) citizen lead, grassroots projects. United Way also announced that it will be supporting the Precarious Employment Research Initiative with $2500. To date United Way Peterborough has released $100,000 in new funding into the community.

“From projects directed to creatively addressing issues related to poverty to encouraging neighbours to build relationships to supporting an indigenous sweat lodge to a magazine that gives voice to marginalized – United Way wanted this funding to bring together citizens to address concerns that were important to them” Said Jim Russell CEO.

“It’s the grassroots, hyper local nature of these projects that got our board, volunteers and staff excited said Robbie Brooks Vice-Chair of United Way’s Community Impact Committee. It’s our privilege to support citizens to take leadership in bringing change and connection to their community.”

United Way Peterborough’s funding model is based on extensive engagement and consultation with the community. The Innovation funding stream was developed based on advice from close to 2000 donors, partner agency representatives, volunteers and community leaders.

Full list of funded projects:

Sacred Fire ($2,500)
A small grassroots group of Indigenous community members working together to maintain a sacred space created within the City of Peterborough. It is the hope of this project to bring isolated people together to remember who we are as Anishinaabe people. To help individuals and families connect with each other in meaningful ways.

DBIA/Warming Room  ($2,500)
The DBIA/Warming Room initiative is one that can be found in other Canadian and American cities. The program will see marginalized individuals of all ages, including youth, will be recruited and hired to clean and maintain sidewalks of their downtown in order to tackle certain perceptions. This will provide various opportunities of employment, life skills, motivation, a sense of community belonging for marginalized individuals. More details will be announced shortly.

Neighbours Fighting Poverty ($3,000)
The purpose of the Awesome Bridging Team is to pursue the continued learnings from our cross-cultural interactions among middle and low-income participants. Trust will continue to be slowly grown, class and cultural divides bridged, towards a neighbor to neighbor long-lasting relationship. The Awesome Internship Program pilot will provide training and a hands-on learning opportunity for people living in poverty to grow their skills as co-facilitators.   The Interns gain leadership, program-planning, public speaking, and facilitation skills in the following opportunities.

McDonnell Street Neighbours ($1,500)
A group of neighbours working together to create opportunities to grow a sense of neighbour spirit, establish a neighbourhood association and run several activities designed to consult with our neighbours on ways to better our collective lives while addressing some of the challenges we all face.

Wild Eats ($5,000)
Leta Brownscombe Co-operative Homes is an eighty-unit non-profit housing provider located in the north end of the City. Home to over 200 people of all ages representing many different ethnic groups. Their community garden will serve Co-op Members interested in growing healthy food for their families. The youth, through the Co-op’s Kids’ Committee, will be designated a large and a medium planter box (sizes A and B) which will be used for educational purposes such as workshops on sowing, fertilizing and harvesting methods.

The River Magazine ( $2,500)
The River Magazine is a community-based arts publication that provides a platform for creative expression for those living in poverty or on a low income in the City of Peterborough.

Carol’s Place ($1,500)
Carol’s Place is a newly formed non profit (Dec. 22nd, 2017) which is working towards building a 24/7 community hub for those that are marginalized, living in poverty and/or isolation.  This was a dream of the late Carol Winter who wanted a warm place for everyone to go at any time and who fought everyday to bring awareness for those who could not speak for themselves.

Men Supporting Men ($2,000)
A peer lead volunteer group geared strictly towards men who may be struggling in theirpersonal lives for any number of reasons. We meet weekly at space provided by the John Howard Society and we offer a non-judgemental, safe place to discuss anything including; legal problems, financial concerns, drug and alcohol abuse, parenting, marital issues or any other concerns we may have. We bring in guest speakers to address the group such as lawyers (criminal or family}, financial planners, addiction counsellors and financial aid workers who answer questions our attendees may have.

Youth Advisory Committee (PYS) ($1,000)
This funding would go towards organizing a day that showcases the artistic talents that Peterborough youth have to offer. This art festival, which we are naming “Voice: Youth Art Expo” would be an afternoon that allows youth in Peterborough to display their work, anything from singing, to poems, to short films or writing, which gives them their own unique voice within the community.

Summer Street Festival ($2,000)
The intention of the Summer Street Festival is to enhance the NeighbourPLAN Program in the neighbourhood of Jackson Park Brookdale (in Northcrest Ward). The festival will enhance the NeighbourPLAN Program led by GreenUP by supporting the broad goals of connecting residents to their neighbours and their community that will in turn create a more livable, active and inclusive neighbourhood. The Summer Street Festival will introduce educational elements and social activities at the event that meaningfully enable interaction and community building for a wide demographic, from children and youth, to parents and elders.

Creating Space ($1,500)
Creating Space is a community arts studio which fosters diverse connections, resilience, and social change in Nogojiiwanong-Peterborough by making art of all kinds, telling stories, and learning together among people of all ages, abilities, and walks of life. We uplift the diverse identities in Nogojiiwanong-Peterborough and highlight local resilience, strengths, interconnectedness, and potential for bridge-building between community members.

Peterborough Precarious Employment Research Initiatives  ($2500)
The Precarious Employment Research Initiative (PERI) is focused on understanding the employment and working conditions that working people face in our community.  The results of this research will be of interest to many, including workers, people seeking work, service providers assisting people looking for and keeping work, the business community, the education sector, health and social service providers, researchers and the media.



 For more information, please contact;

Lisa Smith, Director Philanthropic Impact

United Way Peterborough & District

T: 705-742-8839 ext 29

E: lsmith@uwpeterborough.ca


 About United Way Peterborough & District: United Way Peterborough & District inspires people from all walks of life to come together to raise funds, volunteer and stimulate policy and attitude changes that lead to the improvement of people’s quality of life in the City and County of Peterborough. United Way’s community investment focus is on helping individuals and families move from poverty to possibility and to build strong, healthy communities. For more information on United Way’s work in the community, please visit uwpeterborough.ca.


United Way Drives Community Innovation

United Way of Peterborough & District announced the recipients of the organization’s Innovation Fund launched in February 2018. A total of $75,000 will be shared between two ground-breaking projects addressing issues of housing and homelessness in our community. United Way Peterborough’s funding model is based on extensive engagement and consultation with the community. The Innovation funding stream was developed based on advice from close to 2000 donors, partner agency representatives, volunteers and community leaders.

United Way will be providing $37,000 in funding to Homeward Bound. Homeward Bound as a whole Community partnership, provides the most vulnerable women and their children an opportunity to grow, to achieve a sense of wellness and belonging, have improved self-esteem and sustainable employment that will allow them the capacity to manage their own personal finances, build assets and be contributing members of the community rather than users of a service and a drain on the economy.  Jim Hendry, Chair of United Way’s Community Impact Committee stated “United Way was very interested in funding the work of the Homeward Bound program due to its innovative wrap-around approach which has not been seen before in our community.”

The second project funded by United Way Peterborough is the Host Homes project lead by A Way Home Peterborough. United Way will be providing $38,112 in innovation funding to kick-start the development of a Host Homes Project in Peterborough. Host Homes are a community-based, early intervention and prevention program for youth experiencing or at risk of homelessness. Host Homes provide an alternative to emergency shelter, couch surfing and sleeping outdoors by matching youth at risk of homelessness with community volunteers willing to provide a safe place to stay in their home. This can be a short-term, respite stay or for longer than a year to support transition to permanent housing depending on the youth’s situation.

Jim Russell, CEO, stated “these projects speak to United Way’s strategic investment of donor dollars in our community. United Way is currently funding multiple projects working to address homelessness and the effects of poverty in our community.  These two projects allow us to support new ideas and approaches that also work further upstream to begin to prevent the issue from happening in the first place.”

United Way will be announcing the recipients of its neighbourhood funding at a press conference on Thursday May 10th.


Maegan (YES Shelter for Youth & Families) and Maddie (Host Homes)

Jim Russell, CEO United Way Peterborough & District

Bonnie (Ptbo Housing Corp) and Sheila (COMPASS)

Marion Burton Awarded Scholfield Award of Community Distinction

United Way of Peterborough & District today announced the 2018 recipient of the Scholfield Award of Community Distinction. The annual award was established to recognize an individual or organization for their outstanding contribution and ability to mobilize change within the community.

The 2018 recipient was long-time labour activist Marion Burton. There isn’t a day that goes by that Marion isn’t doing multiple tasks for her community, whether it is in her workplace as a member of OPSEU Local 345 at Peterborough Regional Health Centre; as the Councillor for the Otonabee Ward on Otonabee South Monaghan Township Council, or as the President of the Peterborough & District Labour Council, chair of the Peterborough Workers Action Centre and co-chair of the Occupational and Environmental Health Coalition. Marion is also past president, and still member of the Peterborough Legal Centre Board.  Marion is also involved with the Keene United Church and the Keene Lions Club. An avid curler and member of the Stillbrook Riding Stables Precision Drill Team, Marion also manages to find time to walk with her husband Ken and their two dogs, Max and Brandy.

The late Margot Mashall, secretary of labour council stated, “Marion does much of her work collectively. She doesn’t see that this is her work and her work alone. She invites people to join with her to add their voice and skills to the cause.”

Karen Wilson, chair of United Way Peterborough & District Board, echoed, “Marion’s commitment to building community and giving voice to important local issues is an example of the values United Way wished to honour.”

Past award recipients have been Bill Strode, John Martyn, People First, Survivors Abreast, Marie Bongard, and Roy Brady, Stephen Kylie and most recently Faith Dickinson.

For more information contact:

Jim Russell CEO jrussell@uwpeterborough.ca, 705-742-8839

Coats 4 Kids

United Way of Peterborough & District’s Coats for Kids and Grown-Ups Too program strives to ensure that children and their families will be warm during the winter by providing clean, gently-used winter wear to children, youth, and adults in Peterborough City and County.

“We have found there is a greater need for children’s winter jackets and snowpants,” said Lisa Smith, Director of Philanthropic Impact at United Way of Peterborough & District.

This program provides much needed relief to local families as one in six children in Peterborough lives in poverty. Families continue to deal with sharply rising costs of living and simply don’t have the means to purchase clothing to stay warm during the harsh winter months.

Coats for Kids is possible due to the generous support of Peterborough residents, community organizations, and program partners. Since 1986, individuals and families have donated gently worn winter wear which is then cleaned at no cost to the program by local dry cleaning providers. Grainger Cleaners, Kent Cleaners, and Windsor’s Dry Cleaning Centre have been active and committed program partners since the program began 30 years ago.

This year, winter coat collection will take place Monday, April 16 to Saturday, April 21 at the following locations:

Kent Cleaners – 183 Lansdowne St E
Grainger Cleaners – 885 Lansdowne Street W
Windsor’s Cleaners – Parkhill Plaza, at Monaghan Rd
Windsor’s Cleaners – Kawartha Hts Plaza,1600 Lansdowne St
Windsor’s Cleaners – Riverview Plaza, Water St & Marina Blvd

Other community partners such as Global Point Logistics and McWilliams Moving & Storage have ensured that cleaned coats can be stored.

United Way Peterborough & District invests in a network of essential services to help children and families in need, seniors, and individuals struggling with life’s challenges. The Coats for Kids program is just one of many ways United Way works to create opportunities for a better life for everyone.

– 30 –

For more information contact:
Lisa Smith
Director, Philanthropic Impact
United Way Peterborough & District
(705) 742-8839 ext 29

Tour de Lion 2018 Charity Bike Ride

May 27th, 2018 is the 5th annual Dandelion Day Festival to be held at Millennium Park from 11a.m.-4p.m. This annual celebration focuses on healthy lifestyles and the public is invited to enjoy free live music, face painting, children’s activity wall, and a chance to meet local Health Practitioners and local authors.

The festival will include a charity bike ride, “Tour de Lion” Ride for Fun Health and Community, which includes 3 different routes. All proceeds from pledges collected will be donated directly to United Way to help in their work of building strong inclusive communities.

Click here to read more about Tour de Lion.

To participate:

  1. Click here to choose your ride and register on snapd
  2. Click here to read the rules 
  3. Click here to obtain the waiver (must be signed before the ride. riders under 16 years old MUST have parent signature)

For more information about Dandelion Day and Tour de Lion, please visit: dandelionday.ca




United Way Campaign Chases Final 4%

As we near the end of the 2017 Campaign, United Way volunteers and staff are excited by the current success. With three weeks to go before celebration on March 29th, the Campaign is within 4% of its $1.85 million goal.

Neil Morton, 2017 Campaign chair is stoked. “We are not done yet! I am so grateful for the hard work and commitment of this year’s Cabinet and we are pushing hard to the very end to achieve our goal.”

Bob Gauvreau, #5KChallenge Champion and vice-chair, is asking community leaders to join the effort by donating $5K in the final weeks of the Campaign. Gauvreau is hoping for “a final surge of community effort.”

It’s not just individual donors, local workplaces have spent months fundraising through events and payroll deductions. “The energy and effort at our local workplace Campaigns has been astounding.” praises Lisa Smith, Director of Philanthropic Impact. There is still time to give. Visit the United Way Peterborough website for details.

Jim Russell, CEO, remarked on the excitement building around the two new funding streams recently announced by United Way. “Our Innovation fund and Neighbourhood fund are designed to support grassroots projects and to pilot new ideas in the community. It’s this ground-breaking work that is supported by our Campaign.”  Russell noted that $100K in new funding is currently available to the community.  Click here for application information. Applications are due March 9th at 5pm.

We invite you to join us for our Campaign Celebration on March 29th. Click here to purchase tickets!


For Further information, contact:
Jim Russell CEO

Scholfield Award of Community Distinction

Nominations Open for Scholfield Award of Community Distinction

 United Way Peterborough & District is inviting nominations  for the Scholfield Award of Community Distinction.

This award was established to recognize an individual or organization for their outstanding contribution and ability to mobilize change within our community. “Through their excellent leadership, the award recipient energizes and inspires people to come together to make a lasting difference in the City and County of Peterborough,” says Jim Russell, CEO, United Way Peterborough and District. Nominations close March 15, 2018 and the award will be presented during National Volunteer Week (April 15 – 21st, 2018).

“Volunteers are a diverse group of people who create a ripple effect of inspiration and generosity.  It just makes sense to honour those who go above and beyond in their contributions to our community during National Volunteer Week.” added Russell.

In 2004, Paul and Ina Scholfield were the first recipients of this award. The Scholfield’s have been long-time philanthropists and community builders. Through their generosity and commitment, they lead by example, typifying the spirit of community building. Other recipients of this award include: Faith Dickinson, Stephen Kylie, Marie Bongard, Sharon Courts, Paul Lafond, People First, John Martyn, Bill Strode, Roy Brady, Survivors Abreast, John McNutt and Special Olympics – Peterborough.

The Scholfield Award is open to any resident or organization within the boundaries of the City and County of Peterborough. Nominees are evaluated based on their achievement, commitment and leadership in addressing community needs or issues; the impact of their efforts; their innovative, unique or exemplary approach; and their success in mobilizing members of our community.

Nomination forms  must be submitted no later than 4pm March 15, 2018 to erichmond@uwpeterborough.ca or to the United Way office at 277 Stewart Street, Peterborough.

Click here for a  nomination form!

We are #SoClose – only 5% from Goal.


All the workplace campaigns, individual donations, community events, chilli competitions and barbecues have led to some exciting news for United Way Peterborough & District. Neil Morton, 2017 Campaign Chair, and Jim Russell, CEO, are thrilled to announce that with the generous support of the community United Way Peterborough is only $99,000 from goal.

Neil Morton expressed his excitement at the momentum of this year’s campaign. “This campaign has seen numerous success including many workplaces like Trent University exceeding their goals, the introduction of our inaugural Petes Plaid night, and a very generous anonymous donor providing $30k to match leadership level donations. All of this has happened while faced with the challenge of the announced closure of General Electric. The generosity of this community continues to humble and inspire me.”

Jim Russell also referenced the injection of fun that took place this year with adopting the Plaid Campaign theme. Russell stated “the introduction of plaid into the campaign zeitgeist brought back the fun to our campaign. Many workplaces joined the plaid challenge to help us get to this result.”

With just over four (4) weeks left until its community celebration on March 29th, United Way Peterborough is reminding the community there is still time to give! Bob Gauvreau, Campaign Vice-Chair, has issued a $5K challenge to community and business leaders to help the organization cross the finish line on its campaign. If you haven’t made a gift, please do it today! If you have made a gift, consider giving just a little bit more this year. Consider doing a quick fundraising event at your business – An extra $500 from our corporate and workplace partners will go a long way in helping us reach that finish line!

To donate to United Way Peterborough & District:

  • In person:  Visit us at 277 Stewart Street, Peterborough to make your donation in person. We accept Cash, Cheque, Visa and Mastercard.
  • Over the Phone: To make a donation over the phone by credit card please call 705.742.8839.
  • By Mail: United Way Peterborough & District, 277 Stewart Street, Peterborough, ON K9J 3M8
  • Click here to donate online!