United Way Announces 2015 Youth Grant Recipients

United Way Peterborough & District’s (UWP) commitment to this community’s youth continues. On March 23, United Way Board of Directors approved the distribution of $1,650 through the 2015 Youth Grant Program.

Thanks to donors and community partners, for the past 10 years UWP has provided funding up to $500 (to a maximum of $2,000 annually) for youth led projects in the community. The total dollars distributed through Youth Grants in that time is more than $15,000. Through this program, UWP makes funds accessible to young leaders who are working to make positive change across the City and County of Peterborough.

“United Way is committed to the engagement of young people as active participants in our community, recognizing the unique perspective, skill and value they bring to the table,” says Jim Russell, UWP CEO. “We believe when young people have opportunities to learn about the community and become contributing members at a young age, they will become adults who have a sense of ownership and responsibility to their community. It’s an absolute joy working with our Youth Advisory Committee knowing our community is in good hands in the future,” added Russell.

United Way’s Youth Advisory Committee (YAC) is made up of eleven members age 14 to 18 who take the lead on projects like the Youth Grant Program, Coats For Kids and Back Packs for Kids. The 2015 YAC is Saad Alam, Nick Anderson, Juswynder Deleon, Saalar Faisal, Shayan Faisal, Kailey Grant, Katelynn McRae, Mack Pearce, Violet James-Stampand is led by Co-Chairs, Emma Langill and Logan Hiltz.

The Youth Grant Program offers funding opportunities for youth-led groups working to bring attention to and address concerns they are passionate about, to their peers & communities. This year, YAC reviewed 7 applications for a total of $3,500 and through a diligent and comprehensive selection process decided the following 4 organizations/programs qualified for funding for a total of $1,650 to be distributed on April 13th.

$400: Kawartha World Issues Centre for their upcoming Heritage Drummers & Drum Circle for Global Youth Day. The event will explore environmental justice with a particular attention to the Indigenous perspectives of both Indigenous peoples of this land as well as around the world.

$500: PACE/Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board’s Rainbow Alliance Advocacy Project. This school-based alliance will promote inclusion and awareness by creating materials with LGBTQ positive messages including a video, survey and a mural. The video will be submitted to Reframe Film Festival and posted on social media.

$350: Peterborough County City Health Unit’s Food Literacy Workshop. This cooking class will have a food literacy twist for young people in the community during National Youth Week. The group will discuss the importance of food literacy/security, increase participant’s understanding of how our food choices impact our health, environment, and community.

$400: PARN’s QueerRADicals Rainbow Youth Program, Don’t Box Me In raises awareness of identity struggles both seen and unseen, using art as a tool to explore and conquer personal obstacles. Don’t Box Me In will also bring awareness to the issue of immigration detention and the impact it has in our community as well as the way social constructs “box us in” empowering voices that may not be heard and breaking down barriers that prevent us from being active contributors in our community.

Being a UWP funded program, grant recipients are mandated to follow all or most of the requirements of other organizations applying for funding. All of the funded programs must align directly with one or more of our recently introduced priorities and outcomes and all recipients are required to adhere closely to a stringent reporting process.

Criteria for a United Way Youth Grant is restricted to projects happening in the community that contribute to the overall wellbeing of youth in the City and/or County of Peterborough providing funding for projects that are designed and implemented by youth for youth. Projects should be related to an important issue in our community and must make a positive contribution to their school/community and/or peers.

All applications are reviewed by the Youth Advisory Committee with support from UWP staff for suitability and adherence to guidelines and funding priorities. The review process includes an interview and presentation. When the selection is complete, the YAC presents their recommendations to the Board of Directors for approval. In order to ensure impartiality in the decision making process, committee members are not eligible to apply for UWP funding.

Successful grant recipients receive 85% of the funds only after attending a mandatory training session covering budgeting, media relations, problem solving and reporting requirements. A mid-term report is required at the half-way point of the project, followed by a final report upon completion. The remaining 15% of funds is released when the final report has been received with the appropriate receipts and budget reports. The final report includes a financial statement, any photos, quotes, produced materials, receipts, a list of team members, media clippings and/or any recognition.

Applications for 2016 Youth Grants will be available in January 2016. Whether you have a fully formed project or are at the start of developing a project idea, UWP is happy to offer advice and support during the idea and proposal development process. Watch this website for more details.

2014 YAC Committee

2013-14 United Way Youth Advisory Committee: (l to r) Mathieu Ouellet, Emma Langill, Nick Anderson, Luke Belfry, Shayan Faisal, Logan Hiltz, Saad Alam, Kailey Grant, Melanie Knoche & Kendra Jamieson.

1st Annual Yoga Festival!

Peterborough Yoga Festival

Thank you for all who attended the First Peterborough Yoga Festival! What a beautiful day filled with peace and  harmony!


Media Coverage

About 200 people attended Yoga festival at Del Crary Park, Peterborough Examiner – June 22, 2015

Celebrating harmony and peace while helping community, Kawartha Now – June 16, 2015

Stretch over to Del Crary Park on Sunday for the Peterborough Yoga Festival, Peterborough This Week – June 16, 2015

Yogis taking to lakeside park Sunday to benefit United Way, The Peterborough Examiner, June 17, 2015

1st Annual Peterborough Yoga Festival Will Benefit The United Way, Extra Peterborough, June 17, 2015



Homelessness Partnering Strategy Funding Announcement

United Way Partnering to Fight Homelessness

HPS Group PIcture

(L to R) Keith Riel, Karen Feeley, Donna Rogers, Dorothy Olver, and Jim Russell.


On March 10, 2015 United Way Peterborough & District along with community and federal partners jointly announced the ongoing funding of the Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) for the City and County of Peterborough.

“What is your vision for our community? Wouldn’t it be wonderful to end homelessness in the City and County of Peterborough?” asked United Way Peterborough & District CEO, Jim Russell.

“We are here today to recognize the federal government’s investment in our community and to announce how the HPS funding will be invested but wouldn’t it be wonderful to have a vision, a dream, and a commitment to end homelessness in Peterborough once and for all?” Russell continued.

“To do so would take a strategic and coordinated response across the private, governmental and non-profits sectors. We need to start asking ourselves what it would take to affirm our desires once and for all.”

“United Way is the arbiter of need in Peterborough facilitating and leading deep discussions about social need. We invest in programs and collaboratives that provide vital services to strengthen Peterborough focussing on supporting vulnerable and low-income populations who are disconnected or at risk of becoming disconnected from mainstream services such as education, employment and community supports,” Russell announced.

“We have been the Community Entity for the HPS funding for the last seven years and are thrilled to be continuing to lead this collaborative effort and look forward to helping to realize a vision for this community that includes everyone having a roof over their heads.” Russell added.

Donna, Jim and Dorothy

“Why can’t we end poverty in Peterborough?” asks United Way Ptbo CEO Jim Russell, shown here with Donna Rogers and Karen Feeley.


Media Coverage

Why can’t we end homelessness?, Peterborough This Week – March 10, 2015

FourCast Funded by United Way of Peterborough, The Peterborough Examiner – March 11, 2015


More photos from the HPS Funding Announcement can be found on our Facebook page: Facebook.com/UnitedWayPtbo