2008 Campaign highlights

PricewaterhouseCoopers demonstrates their exceptional passion for the community

In September, knowing that many thousands of people across Toronto and their families would need more support in the months to come, United Way set its annual Campaign goal at an unprecedented $110 million. A few weeks before the end of the fundraising Campaign, United Way found itself facing a gap and issued a special Campaign appeal to the people of Toronto.

Many organizations responded to United Way’s call for additional support, but PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP stands out as exceptional in their response. When it became apparent just how critically their help was needed, Campaign Co-chairs David Craig, Tracey Jennings and Kim Davies along with their enthusiastic volunteer team, harnessed their efforts again to organize an additional blitz, to secure every possible donation. In one day they raised an additional $107,345, bringing PwC’s overall 2008 GTA fundraising total to over $1 million—a record breaking result for their GTA campaign!

United Way would like to acknowledge the leadership of CEO Chris Clark, Managing Partner David Forster and each and every PwC employee for their willingness to dig even deeper on behalf of their community. PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP have once again demonstrated they are passionate about the community in which they live and work.

LCBO campaign draws support from staff and customers

LCBO customers LCBO point of purchase promotion

The LCBO's Ontario-wide campaign raised a record $1.592 million for United Way. Employees participated in special events, pledging programs, and promoted their "Gift of Giving" point of sale program during the month of October, where customers generously added a $2 United Way donation to their purchase. The generosity of LCBO customers and staff is making a difference in communities across Ontario.

Kraft Canada: United in the Way we care

Raffle tickets

As part of their annual fundraising campaign, Kraft Canada employees in the Toronto area got together this spring to make a huge difference in their community by taking part in their fourth annual "Day of Caring®" events. Over 400 employees rolled up their sleeves to volunteer in a number of United Way member agencies, such as gardening at Community Living Toronto & CNIB, painting the Jane-Finch Boys & Girls Club, and "speed mentoring" at Access Alliance. Participants got a first hand look at the agencies and met many of the people who rely on the services supported by United Way funding.

In the fall, the annual United Way Campaign kicked off under the theme of 'United in the Way we care'. This year’s Headquarter campaign was a huge success raising over $215,000. The campaign not only exceeded this year’s targets for both pledges and participation, but surpassed the funds raised in 2007 by 12%. Kraft employees were united in their generosity and spirit through pledging and special events. The inaugural “Wii Play for the United Way” event was a ‘rocking’ success thanks to the talented Executive Team members who delivered an outstanding rock band performance before the 40+ players got down to serious business. Not to be outdone, the live auction (going once, going twice….sold!), and Product Swap sales were the places to be for outstanding deals. Other campaign highlights included the return of our Tea Ladies, Executive Team breakfast and Jeans Day. The two week campaign ended in style at the ultra chic “Black and White” Night of Curiosities event attended by over 200 employees. Thanks to all Kraft employees who were definitely united in the way they cared this year.

Kraft breakfastKraft tea cart

Xerox Canada exceeds campaign goal

Xerox team presents cheque to United Way

Xerox Canada Inc. was pleased to not only surpass their 2008 United Way campaign goal, they also exceeded their previous year's contribution by 6%. Pictured are Darya Smolak (United Way Toronto), Les Wiseman (Xerox), Sacha Fraser (Campaign co-Chair, Xerox), Richard Keilman (Campaign co-Chair, Xerox), John Corely (Xerox), and Dan Fortin (President IBM Canada Inc. and Technology Chair on the United Way Cabinet).

RBC Capital Markets Trike Race for United Way

The trading floor was a buzz with activity as the CEO, members of the executive committee, and staff raced in three heats of tricycle races, raising $9,200 for United Way Toronto. Watch to see who takes the prized 'maillot jaune' in this hotly contested race.

Ryerson University launches "RU United"

Equifax Wings and Wails for the United Way

Equifax United Way campaign team

Equifax’s generosity was matched only by their creativity when it came to this year's United Way campaign. They raised a heap of money by putting their stomachs and fingers to the test with a thrilling chicken-wing eating and a rocking Guitar Hero competition.

The inaugural Guitar Hero contest featured over 40 rockers shredding their fingers while administering a high voltage aural assault on bystanders. But after four days of chopping down the competition, two axmen stood alone on stage: Sonny Santos and Nelson Smith. Both men wailed away valiantly until Nelson Smith unleashed his inner Hendrix and kissed the sky in victory. The crowd was in awe. Rock on Nelson and Sonny!

Another first for Equifax was the chicken-wing eating contest sponsored by our friends at St. Louis Restaurant. 48 people from every department went to watch seven gladiators gird their guts and be the fastest to eat 14 wings. Although everyone got off to a good start, John Russo laid down the law and plowed down the poultry in less than three minutes. Onlookers and fellow competitors alike could only applaud his majestic mastication. Way to go John!

Equifax Guitar Hero FinalistsEquifax Wing Eating Contest

For those about to rock: we salute you!

IBM wraps up with an employee skating event at the Air Canada Centre

IBM skating day

Hundreds of IBM employees and their families enjoyed a skating night at the ACC wrapping up their 2008 Employee Charitable Campaign. Celebrating the over $3.5 million raised for communities across Canada, participants enjoyed skating, dinner, fun treats and activities for the kids.

IBM group raptor at IBM

Gowlings Idel

Gowlings Idel for United Way talented guitar players

Talented singers and performers in a variety of interesting costumes entertained their colleagues at this year's Gowlings Idel for United Way.

feather boa furry creature singers

TD Wealth Management Hosts Hallowealth for United Way

pumpkin with TD carved into it TD Hallowealth party

Fantastic costumes, fortune tellers, caricature artists, skillfully carved pumpkins, and the "Share the Wealth" pot were just a few of the highlights at this year's Hallowealth, TD Wealth Management's Halloween party in support of United Way. Many came dressed as bankers.

Share the wealth wonderful costumes bring life to Hallowealth

Blake, Cassels & Graydon shows they care at John Howard Society

volunteers from Blake, Cassels and Graydon at John Howard Society

Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP's United Way campaign was full of activity this year, including the Family Feud challenge against Gowlings, a singing bee, a bake sale and silent auction, and other events.

But one of the highlights this year was a "Day of Caring®" event at the John Howard Society (JHS). Enthusiastic volunteers painted a mural in the boardroom of a tree, in keeping with JHS's mission of "Supporting New Beginnings". The group, representing all areas of the firm, enjoyed working together and seeing first hand how their United Way support makes their community stronger. Special thanks to articling student Iris Antonios who drew the tree.

Brookfield Properties "Pain for Gain" Stair Climb for United Way

Brookfield Stair Climber in United Way t-shirt

On November 27th, 16 brave and fit staff from Brookfield Properties took the 2nd Annual "Pain for Gain" Stair Climb challenge. They climbed all the stairs – in all the buildings – in the Brookfield Toronto Office Building Portfolio, starting with the 47 floor Bay Wellington Tower at Brookfield Place. That's almost 4 CN Towers for each climber! Their determination and generous sponsors raised almost $16,000 for United Way Toronto, which will be matched dollar for dollar by Brookfield Properties. Climbers came from Brookfield's Leasing, Investment, Legal, Development and Asset Management teams. Their incredible team spirit goes a long way in making Toronto a better city for all of us.

16 climbers at the top of Brookfield Place

See more photos of the Brookfield Climbers at flickr.com/unitedwaytoronto.

It was Blakes vs. Gowlings in a Family Feud for United Way

Family Feud contestants

Two Toronto firms went head to head in a Family Feud to support United Way. The live studio audience was full of supporters for both "families", but the visiting family was given a boost when their spirited fans arrived in matching t-shirts that read: "Survey says... Gowlings".

Host Richard Dawson (a.k.a. David Palumbo) challenged the families with subjects including I Love Lucy, and Things that make you go "oooh". A "wigged-out" team from Gowlings Financial Services came out on top, taking home the coveted Family Feud Cup.

The Gowlings United Way campaign was also given a boost as the defeated Blakes family is donating $1,000 to the Gowlings campaign.

Family Feud winners, Gowlings, hold their cup highfans from both Gowlings and Blakes cheered on the two families

TSX United Way Campaign opens the markets

The TMX Group launched their United Way campaign with a morning reception and by opening the Toronto Stock Exchange. United Way Toronto's Susan McIsaac was on hand the help get the markets started.

TSX campaign launch TSX campaign launch

Toronto Star sets shining example with 2008 campaign!

Toronto Star employees give cheque to Frances Lankin after a successful campaign

Thumbs up to Toronto Star's successful campaign. Through a combination of employee pledges and special events, employees at Toronto Star presented Frances Lankin with a cheque for almost $270,000. On hand for the presentation to Frances Lankin (center) were campaign co-chairs, Lorraine Leyland (left) and Al Sheldon (right). To date, they have raised over $280,000!

KPMG Cares at P.O.I.N.T.

KPMG Day of Caring® KPMG Day of Caring®

On Wednesday November 19, 2008, Amanda Bridgemohan, Sue Keramidopoulis, Ramdai Ramoutar and Natalie Timlaset from KPMG took part in the Senior's Lunch at United Way agency P.O.I.N.T. (People and Organizations in North Toronto), setting up tables, serving the meal, and socializing with the seniors. This Day of Caring® event was just part of KPMG's 2008 United Way Campaign. See more photos at flickr.com.

Scotiabank laces up for United Way

NHL Alumni help Scotiabank Give Hope

On November 6, 2008, NHL alumni Wendel Clark and Mark Napier joined Scotiabank executives and youth from United Way agencies in a friendly hockey game. With a 2008 campaign fundraising goal of $5 million, Chris Hodgson, Scotiabank Group Head, says that the game is meant to inspire our community and connect with the agencies that United Way supports.

Scotiabank team two of the organizers for the Scotiabank Team event

Molson employees found 'the Way' to a very successful campaign

Molson Beer Babies

An uncertain economic climate did not limit the Molson Canada United Way fundraising campaign. This dedicated and spirited team exceeded last year's campaign by 15%, proving that when we work together, we can achieve so much more as a team.

Molson employees participate in Day of Caring®

In total, with pledges, special events, corporate donations, and Molson’s matching gift program, Molson raised just over $610,000 for the United Way. Read more about Molson's awesome campaign, including their Day of Caring® events, on their blog: Molson Employees found the Way.

McCarthy Tétrault Idol

McCarthy singers McCarthy lawyers sing and play guitar

From Abba's Mamma Mia (left) to a very creative original blues tune (right), McCarthy Tétrault Idol proves that this firm has talent, and a lot of community spirit. The entertaining event was organized by the 2008 United Way committee (below) in support of the annual fundraising campaign. Performers and audience alike enjoyed an opportunity to have fun while helping to make Toronto a better city by supporting United Way's Community Fund.

Canadian Idol particpants at McCarthy Tetrault

Team Molson support United Way campaign at CN Tower Climb

Molson employees climb the CN Tower for United Way

On Sunday October 26, a team of 25 Molson employees took on the challenge of climbing the 1,776 stairs to the top of the CN Tower. These early morning challengers raised over $9,000 for United Way, and summed it up best with: "Great workout, great experience, great cause."

Read the story and comments on the Molson Blog.

Molson employees show off their times for climbing the CN Tower for United Way

Woodbine Races for United Way

Woodbine employees race for United Way

Woodbine Entertainment's United Way Campaign kicks off with their signature event - the Turf Races at Woodbine Race Track. This year they had the most competitors (over 120) competing in 7 different challenges. United Way Toronto had two teams competing and a lot of spectators cheering us on. This year's competition was a lot more fierce than in previous years, including teams from the Toronto Police, 680 News and even Woodbine's Jockeys.

Woodbine turf races group shot

Watch more videos of the Woodbine Turf Races on YouTube or read more at Triple Dead Heat.

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