40 Years of Giving: The University of Regina's United Way campaign is underway

By University Advancement and Communications Posted: November 2, 2021 5:00 a.m.

The 40th Anniversary of the U of R's United Way campaign has kicked off
The 40th Anniversary of the U of R's United Way campaign has kicked off Photo: United Way Regina

The 40th Anniversary of the U of R's United Way campaign has kicked off with students, faculty and staff once again demonstrating their giving spirit in support of local community organizations.

"Let's all stop for a minute and think about the community we serve. As an institution, the local community is important to us and this is the time of year that we can give back," says Dr. Chris Oriet, campaign co-chair and professor in the Department of Psychology. "People at the University understand that we exist to serve the community but without a community to serve, we would not be here."

The theme of this year's campaign is Rebuild. Recover. Reunite.

Dr. Jeff Keshen visits colleagues from
the fifth floor of the Administration Humanities
building who held a fundraiser where, for a
donation, people could wear their pyjamas
to work. Photo: Roxane Meachem

Donations to the campaign will help local organizations like the Early Childhood Intervention Program (ECIP), the Campaign for Grade Level Reading, and Mobile Crisis Services provide critical supports to those most impacted by the pandemic.

Aside from the financial impact that COVID-19 has had on adults, you might not know that the pandemic has also greatly affected children. As an example, Oriet notes that young students who were already struggling with reading got so much worse during the pandemic because regular monitoring and support wasn't available.

"We know that with childhood literacy if kids aren't reading at grade level by the end of grade 3, they will fall behind. By grade 5 they will be a year behind their peers who have grade level reading, and by grade 9, they will be two years behind," Oriet says. "That is why it's so important to support this cause."

"COVID-19 has and continues to have a negative impact on our lives as well as the lives of our friends, families and loved ones," adds david Gregory, Interim Provost and Vice-President (Academic). "However, the culture of giving that has been displayed by the University of Regina family throughout the 40 years of involvement with the United Way gives me great hope that this campaign will be a success and that we will be able to support those who need it most as they recover from the hardships of the pandemic."

With over $400,000 raised earlier this year for Big Hearts Family Giving, the University community has proven its giving spirit. Big Hearts is designed for faculty and staff members to donate directly to support students at the U of R.

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Images: United Way Regina

Organizers of the U of R United Way campaign plan to tap into that generosity and have set a fundraising goal of $90,000. Although the campaign won't be quite the same because of the pandemic, Oriet encourages everyone to get creative in how they help raise funds. The University of Regina's UNpumpkin carving contest or the United Way Regina's Local Love Lottery are two creative fun ways to donate.

Want to keep it simple? Donations will also be collected using e-Pledge; please click here to contribute to the campaign. Any donations made through the campaign can be directed to the University of Regina, any registered Canadian charity or United Way initiative. Please donate before December 3.


U of R United Way campaign success underscores importance of community support on campus | Communications and Marketing, University of Regina (uregina.ca)

U of R's United Way campaign supports community members financially impacted by pandemic | Communications and Marketing, University of Regina (uregina.ca)