Participants sign onto the Share the Local Love campaign for the 2018 United Way Day at the Bay Centre on Sept. 19. (Keili Bartlett / News staff)

Participants sign onto the Share the Local Love campaign for the 2018 United Way Day at the Bay Centre on Sept. 19. (Keili Bartlett / News staff)

United Way asks Victoria to share local love

2018 campaign aims to raise another $5M

It’s time to share the local love as United Way launched their annual campaign at the Bay Centre, asking Victoria “What does local love look like?”

At the Sept. 19 launch, Jennifer Young, the director of communications and marketing for United Way Greater Victoria, answered.

“Local love looks like giving back to the community,” she said. “We’re hoping to raise another third of our ambitious $15 million goal over three years, and we know Victoria will do it. People are incredibly generous.”

READ MORE: United Way Greater Victoria embarks on ambitious multi-year campaign

At the 2017 United Way Day launch, the campaign set its $15 million goal. The first year raised $5 million, and the second year hopes to match it. Last year, more than 87,000 people were helped by United Way to make a positive impact.

“Whether it’s a single mom who need a little help to be a good parent so their kid gets a great start in life, or whether it’s a lonely senior who gets out to a community meal on a Sunday night and gets that really important socialization. Or even a youth ageing out of foster care. We don’t want them to end up on the street, so they get the support they need to transition successfully into adulthood,” Young said.

It’s the second year the launch has been hosted at the Bay Centre, which general manager Darlene Holstein said is perfectly located for its high traffic, local products and central position in Victoria. People can share how they help their community and what they love about it in chalk, on blackboards placed in the Bay Centre until Sept. 30.

“It really lends itself well to the community to get involved, pay it forward if you will,” Holstein said at the launch, adding the Bay Centre was a natural fit with the local love campaign.

The Bay Centre has pledged to help others give back with a shopping spree worth $1,000. To be eligible for the United Way’s win-one-get-one package, nominate a do-gooder you want to see recognized on the United Way Facebook page. Send them a photo and the low down on how they make the community better.

In the spirit of sharing the love, Black Press is also pitching in a $100 gift card to the Bay Centre. To win, share and like our live video from the launch on Facebook. Donations for the 2018 share the local love campaign can be made at the 201-633 Courtney Street office, by phone at 250-385-6708 or online at uwgv.ca.