Songhees, Esquimalt and W̱SÁNEĆ territories | August 10, 2021 – Thanks to a generous $20,000 donation from the TELUS Vancouver Island Community Board, more meals and friendly smiles will be delivered to isolated seniors through United Way’s More than Meals program. More than ever, seniors are facing acute stress and anxiety, increased isolation and experiencing more challenges accessing healthy food and meals.
United Way’s More than Meals program, delivered through partner agencies such as James Bay New Horizons, Oak Bay Volunteer Services, Beacon Community Services and Silver Threads and their teams of volunteers, gives seniors healthy meals at their homes. Not only that – they are receiving critically important social visits and connections. This program, launched in March 2020, has grown from 200 delivered meals a week to 1,200 meals a week for isolated and marginalized seniors across Southern Vancouver Island.
“This support from TELUS is wonderful and we very much appreciate it,” said Mark Breslauer, CEO at UWSVI. “Many seniors in our community are often on a limited income which greatly impacts their physical, mental and emotional well-being. We continue to look for sustainable funding so that we can continue to operate this vital program,” said Breslauer.
TELUS has a long history of giving through their innovative Community Board funding model. Since 2007, this Board has provided over $73,000 to United Way programs. This additional support will ensure that isolated and low-income seniors will continue to receive the support they need, as UWSVI continues to contend with the impact of the pandemic.
“With a demonstrated history of creating community change set by former board chair Mel Cooper, our Board is proud to continue enabling support for at-risk communities,” said Lori McLeod, Chair of the TELUS Vancouver Island Community Board. “The pandemic shone a spotlight on the incredibly difficult challenges faced by many seniors and this investment will ensure those most in need receive healthy meals, social visits, and continue to be connected to the resources they need to live quality lives.”
The TELUS Vancouver Island Community Board is one of 13 philanthropic boards, a unique model created by TELUS and funded by the TELUS Friendly Future Foundation.
For individuals or businesses looking to make a contribution to United Way’s More Than Meals program, please visit: uwsvi.ca/isolated-seniors.
About United Way Southern Vancouver Island
United Way Southern Vancouver Island (formerly United Way Greater Victoria) is a trusted leader, influencer and catalyst for change. United, we accelerate change to improve the lives of our neighbours who need it most, making our local community stronger. We believe everyone on Southern Vancouver Island, which includes 13 municipalities and 11 First Nations and the Southern Gulf Islands should have the opportunity to reach their potential. Our priorities are focused on assisting isolated seniors; families in need; diversity, equity and inclusion; and individuals struggling with mental health challenges and/or addictions. Last fiscal year, United Way raised $6.2 million thanks to over 7,000 donors and 200 workplaces opening their offices to run employee giving programs. Through our community partnerships, over 125,000 people on Southern Vancouver Island received support.
Kathryn Wu, Beattie Tartan