United Way says thanks for 2012 campaign

An appreciation breakfast recognized those who donated and the funded agencies that support Cranbrook and Kimberley

After topping out its $115,000 campaign goal for 2012 at $123,000, it was time for the United Way of Cranbrook and Kimberley to celebrate on Thursday, March 21.

The organization held an Appreciation Breakfast at The Heritage Inn on Thursday morning to bring together the businesses that gave so generously in 2012, and the agencies that use that funding to provide services to residents of Cranbrook and Kimberley in all stages of life.

“We realized a number of successes in 2012,” said Donna Brady Fields, United Way’s executive director. “We are very pleased with that and it is due to our workplace campaigns, mainly out of Canfor but also our various local campaigns.

“Community support is crucial to our annual campaign and we challenge each of you to support United Way and encourage the community to get involved.”

United Way recognized each of the businesses that contributed to the successful 2012 campaign, with special mention to Canfor which saw 80 per cent of employees take part in the workplace campaign, and Falkins Insurance which began a workplace campaign in 2012.

Other organizations in Cranbrook and Kimberley which were recognized for a workplace campaign are: Community Connections Society of Southeast BC, Cranbrook Society of Community Living, Finning Cranbrook and Sparwood, RBC branches in Cranbrook, Kimberley, Creston, Fernie and Sparwood, ICBC, SNC Lavalin, BC Hydro, Bank of Montreal, BC Assessment, Canadian Pacific Railway, CIBC, College of the Rockies, HSBC, Regional District of East Kootenay, Service Canada and TD Canada Trust.

Mayor Wayne Stetski, a director of the United Way board, thanked all those who made donations in 2012.

“You really do make Cranbrook a better place to live,” he said. “Thank you for caring.”

During the breakfast, the 13 agencies that United Way funded through the 2012 campaign were individually recognized for the services they provide to the community.

Those agencies are: Big Brothers Big Sisters of Cranbrook; Bellies to Babies; the Cranbrook Boys and Girls Club; Cranbrook and Kimberley Daybreak programs; the F.W. Green Memorial Home; Kimberley Special Care Home; Cranbrook and District Restorative Justice; Cranbrook Hospice Society; the Hospice Society of the Columbia Valley; Cranbrook Society for Community Living; the East Kootenay PARTY program; and Options for Sexual Health.

“United Way has been consistent supporters of the Cranbrook Boys and Girls Club and on behalf of the children we support, I would like to thank you for donating to us,” said Club executive director Gord Johnston. “Without the United Way, the Boys and Girls Club wouldn’t survive – we wouldn’t be where we are today.”

“It’s not just that cheque,” said Dana Osiowy of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Cranbrook. “We get a lot of support and mentorship from United Way.”

Board chair Bev Campbell explained the impact of United Way in Cranbrook, Kimberley and all over Canada.

“Few people who donate realize they are part of a Canada-wide event. The money that is donated is spent in the community and one in three people benefit from the services we provide,” said Campbell.

“We are so passionate about United Way because of its impact on the community.”