The United Way/Centraide Windsor-Essex County received $560,022 from fundraising done by Ford Motor Company and Unifor Locals 200 & 240 employees and retirees.
Fundraising efforts were also made by Voith Industrial Services and Penske Logistics Canada.
“In the fight to reduce poverty and mitigate its effects, Ford and Unifor Locals 200 & 240 are right beside us,” said Lorraine Goddard, United Way’s CEO in a press release, “Ford, and its employees, beyond a shadow of a doubt, ‘go further to support their community. We are incredibly grateful for their on-going generosity.”
Chris Barnes and April McLellan are Ford -Unifor campaign co-chairs that spoke at the event held at the Windsor Star News Café on Monday, January 18.
“A special thanks to all of our co-chairs and canvassers, made up of Local 200 members from Ford, Penske, Voith and the Local 240 for all the work they have put in this campaign to make it the success it is today. These people not only give their hard earned money, they provide time and an answer to any concerns that they, or people that they are canvassing, have,” said McLellan.
She also acknowledged the retirees, who not only gave during all the years at work but continue to donate when in retirement.
“You know people are really giving from the heart, and really care, when they continue after they have left the workforce,” said McLellan.
This was Barnes' first time participating in the event in Windsor-Essex County as an operations manager at Ford. He said that compared to the numbers from last year, there was a 3 per cent increase in participation making it 65 per cent of the workforce that take part in the fundraising.
“I can honestly say that the contribution and the energy around this campaign, compared to what I have been witness to, is second to none. And I have to thank every single one of you here today,” said Barnes.
Shaun Whitehead, Ford site operations manager, said that she is proud that the employees don’t settle for putting a coin into a bucket.
“We are not just passively giving money. We are actively participating in the community,” said Whitehead.
In a press release, Chris Taylor, the president of Unifor Local 200, said “Our members are incredibly committed to their community and I want to offer them my personal gratitude for their efforts.”
The United Way/Centraide of Windsor-Essex County provides 32 programs that help support those affected by poverty, families and children, and to build strong neighbourhoods. The fundraising campaign isn’t over officially until March, and if you are looking to donate, you can do so at www.weareunited.com/donate or by calling 519-258-0000 ext.1145.