Shawn sits on a park bench outside his office in downtown Calgary

I grew up in poverty. My family didn’t have much but we did had a close-knit circle of friends, neighbours, and relatives who helped us make ends meet. They bought us food, helped us pay our bills, and provided us with second-hand clothes. They were a crucial safety net for my family; one we were fortunate enough to have.

A lot of people in our city don’t have that sort of safety net. They don’t have anyone to turn to when faced with hardship. And because Calgary is an affluent city, with well-paid jobs and expensive homes, we often forget there are people in our communities who are struggling. They do exist, and they are a part of our city. The working poor, kids who don’t have enough to eat, families that don’t know how to manage their finances – they exist, and they need a safety net too.

United Way provides Calgarians with opportunities that enable them to build a better future for themselves and their families. Bringing people together, raising awareness about the social issues impacting our city, and helping Calgarians access the supports they need to thrive - that is the most important thing. And that is what United Way does.

When you give to United Way, you’re giving people a hand up, not a hand out. Together, we can wipe out poverty in our city. We can change the world by looking out for one another.


We are all Calgary.

Together, we are all stronger. Meet a few of the 178,700 people who are helped each year.

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