At the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, 11 United Ways in Atlantic Canada launched the Atlantic Compassion Fund (ACF) with Atlantic Business Interiors, The fund is designed to help agencies across Atlantic Canada respond to the immediate and emerging needs of their communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Think about the challenges
Homelessness, food insecurity, mental illness and precarious employment are difficult things to have to experience. Now, as public health measures across the Atlantic region are responding to COVID-19, people who are already vulnerable are facing major disruptions and new risks – and many are in crisis right now.
Now, more than ever, support for those who need it most
This Atlantic-wide fund will help meet basic needs, reduce the impact of further marginalization and bring people back together when the time is right.
Led by United Way Halifax, members of the ACF include:
- United Way Central New Brunswick (includes the areas of Fredericton, Central and Northwestern NB):
- United Way Greater Moncton & Southeastern New Brunswick
- United Way Saint John, Kings & Charlotte
- United Way Newfoundland & Labrador
- United Way Cape Breton
- United Way Colchester County
- United Way Cumberland County
- United Way Lunenburg County
- United Way Pictou County; and
- United Way Prince Edward Island
The funds will help vulnerable people who need shelter, food, or mental health support to connect with their community support services. While the COVID-19 pandemic continues, the ACF’s priority is to determine local and regional impacts.
Give locally – help regionally
Individuals and organizations in the region can give to the fund through their local United Way or Centraide.
So far, more than $3M has been raised through the ACF. Funds are being used for:
- Grocery store gift cards for families who can no longer access community programs they depend on.
- Training for new call centre volunteers so they can support youth who are alone, at-risk or scared.
- Care packages of food, hygiene products, and clothing for people recently released from correctional facilities.
- Supplies like hand sanitizer, soap, gloves and masks for families who are not able to purchase these items themselves.
- Help for seniors who don’t have the technology or budget to stay connected, fed and healthy while they self-isolate.
As of May 14, more than $2,044,024 has been disbursed into 307 registered charities in Atlantic Canada.