Lianna Hardy of Community Living Trent Highlands in Haliburton knows the importance of the United Way.
Last September, thanks to United Way, they were able to build community gardens at 73 Victoria St.
“Members from the United Way came and volunteered their time and it was instrumental in getting the garden beds built and the pathways and the granite screening put down,” Hardy said at the local launch of the United Way campaign at the OPP detachment in Minden Oct. 29.
She said since then, it’s been “amazing.” She estimated they have about 22 garden beds. Organizations donate a bit of money and can use the plots. For example, SIRCH uses the produce it grows for its Cook It Up program.
She said people also learn the gamut of gardening, from seeds and planting, to maintenance and harvesting.
Along the way, she said they’ve built great community partnerships.
Anne Manley adds a plug for Job Quest. It’s an employment program targeted to meet the needs of people with barriers that prohibit them from finding and keeping a job.
Despite all of that, Hardy said United Way is not as well known locally as it is in Lindsay and Peterborough.
Penny Barton Dyke, the executive director of United Way for the City of Kawartha Lakes, said last Tuesday’s event was to highlight some of the work of local agencies that have received United Way support for the past several years.
She noted that in the past four years, the LCBO funds raised in the County through the At the Til Campaign total $100,811. Some of the past recipients have included Food for Kids; Big Brothers Big Sisters and EarlyON.
“This workplace campaign is critical to this community and the funds have been invested in youth as requested in its early days,” said community investment coordinator Shantal Ingram.
“We are grateful for the commitment of the LCBO staff and patrons and look forward to continuing the work together to support local programs,” she added.
Barton Dyke noted they are also part of the Poverty Reduction Strategy. Last spring, they expanded their bursary program to Haliburton Highlands Secondary School. They’re also involved in the provice-wide 211 help system that County residents use.
She said local organizations can get involved by starting a workplace campaign, holding a special event, getting involved in a day of caring or volunteering.
“All funds raised in Haliburton County will stay in Haliburton County.”
For more information, contact Shantal Ingram at communityinvestment@ckl. unitedway.ca or 705-878-5081