The United Way for the City of Kawartha Lakes is seeking Highlanders’ help in equipping local organizations with the funds to change lives.

Through the pandemic, the United Way provided SIRCH Community Services, the Rotary Club of Haliburton, the Central Food Network, Minden’s food bank and the Kinmount food bank with thousands of dollars through the federal government’s New Horizons for Seniors Response fund and Emergency Response fund.

Now, the United Way is seeking more donations as it moves into a post-COVID funding world.

“I was really taken aback by how the United Way identified issues with COVID, specifically with seniors, and then created programs to be able to support other organizations that were already serving that demographic,” said Brian Nash, the new Haliburton County Campaign co-chair, at an Oct. 25 campaign kick-off event.

Nash ran the Rotary Club of Haliburton’s Good Food box, which provided nutritious food to seniors in need.

He saw firsthand how Haliburton County benefits from the United Way’s funding and large community garden in Lindsay.

“Our community last year benefited from about 4,000 pounds of food from that garden,” he said.

The United Way’s donations are redistributed to each donor’s area, meaning donations from Haliburton benefit local food banks or other community groups.

There’s also a new Matching Collaborative Grant, awarding up to $10,000 per project alongside a matching contribution from the applying agency. There’s room for one organization in Haliburton County to receive this grant.

“UWCKL has been promoting collective impact models for a decade and a half,” said Shantal Ingram, co-executive director. “It is important to look at ways to strengthen our community’s impact on poverty and collaboration is necessary… UWCKL is, and will remain, focused on actions to end poverty and help our most vulnerable. We hope to inspire new partners to join and also further match the funds given out to help increase our trajectory of ending poverty.”

The United Way has other grants available too, such as a community capacity grant focused on growing food programs, youth mentorship programs, seniors support services and more.

For Nash, volunteering with the United Way’s fundraising committee is a way of giving back. “This is my way of saying thank you,” he said.

To donate to United Way visit