Do you have a question about United Way or our work to improve lives locally? Here are the questions (and answers!) that we get most often. Contact us or find your local United Way for more answers.

Why should I give to United Way?

Every day, United Way works to improve lives locally and create opportunities for everyone in our communities.

Find out more about our work.

I need help.

The best way to find assistance close to you is through 211, a platform that can connect you with a full range of non-emergency social, health and government services in your community. To access 211, simply dial “2-1-1” on your telephone or visit

If 211 service is not available in your area, your local United Way can also help connect you with programs and resources in your community.

What is the United Way Movement?

United Way Centraide is a federated network of 77 local United Way offices, each registered as its own non-profit organization and governed by an independent volunteer-led local Board of Directors. Each United Way works locally to raise funds and invest in improving lives in its community.

United Way Centraide Canada is the national office and has a distinct role to provide leadership, guidance and support to local United Ways across the country. Together, local United Ways and United Way Centraide Canada form the United Way Movement.

I feel pressured to give to United Way.

No one should feel forced to give to United Way. Giving is a personal choice that should always be made voluntarily. If you have felt pressured to donate to a United Way campaign, we encourage you to raise those concerns directly with your local United Way.

Does United Way fund religious organizations?

United Way is non-partisan and non-religious. While some of the organizations we fund have religious origins, like the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA), the services and programs offered by these organizations are open to all individuals regardless of religious affiliation.

I have items or services to donate.

United Way relies on the generous contributions of community members every year to keep our costs as low as possible. If you would like to make an in-kind donation, or offer pro-bono services, please contact your local United Way to determine what is needed in your community.

I want to request funding from United Way.

Each local United Way makes independent funding decisions based on the needs and priorities in its community. To find out more about the process for obtaining funding in your community, please contact your local United Way.

I want my business to be involved with United Way.

Thank you – there are a number of ways your organization can get involved. By having a conversation with your local United Way, we can identify the volunteer opportunities, fundraising initiatives or other partnerships that will work best for everyone.

I want to volunteer with United Way.

Thank you – volunteers work with United Way to make a difference in communities across Canada. To find the volunteer opportunity that is right for you, please contact your local United Way.

I am interested in working for United Way.

Please visit our Careers page for a listing of current employment opportunities across Canada. Opportunities in your community may also be available by contacting your local United Way.

I need a tax receipt for my donation.

If you contributed via payroll deduction or through a pension plan, your gift should be reflected on your T4 and a tax receipt is not required. If you donated by credit card or cheque, please contact your local United Way to obtain a receipt.

I need to update my contact or payment information.

To update your contact or payment information, please contact your local United Way.

How much of my donation goes to administrative costs?

On average across the country, 85 cents of every dollar raised by United Way goes directly back to the community. This is well above industry standards, and competitive with the top non-profit organization across Canada. In turn, United Way is helping thousands of other non-profits keep their costs low too.

To find out more about administrative costs in your community, please contact your local United Way.

How are executive salaries determined?

Executive salaries at United Way Centraide Canada and United Ways across Canada are established through a comparison of executive compensation at other charities, an assessment of roles and responsibilities, and a commitment to spending dollars wisely.

The Canada Revenue Agency requires charities to provide the salary ranges of their most highly paid employees and publishes this information annually here.