Volunteers needed to help spread poverty awareness.

United Way Winnipeg needs volunteers for the Living on the Edge: Taking a Look at Poverty simulation.

Are you looking for a unique experience that allows you to learn more about important issues in Winnipeg?

Volunteers at a poverty simulation.Simulation volunteers act as agency, business and servicerepresentatives throughout the duration of a Living on the Edge poverty simulation.

Volunteer requirements:

    • No preparation, previous knowledge or other experience needed.
    • Each simulation requires approximately 3.5 hours, most often during the day

This is a great opportunity to help educate others on the realities of poverty while you develop and enhance your own interpersonal, leadership, and communication skills.

To learn more, please contact United Way
at 204-477-5360 or lote@unitedwaywinnipeg.mb.ca

What is Living on the Edge?

Living on the Edge is a unique experience designed to provide a glimpse into what it might be like to live on a low income trying to survive from month to month. Participants are placed in different households, each with a story that describes their financial situation. The simulation is divided into four simulated weeks. Following the simulation, participants and volunteers debrief the experience and learn more about the role United Way Winnipeg plays in addressing poverty.

Volunteers are integral to the poverty simulation experience. As participants go through the month they visit and utilize a number of community services and resources such as the bank, grocery store, social service office, and family resource centre. Volunteers serve as the staffers of these different community service and resource offices, helping guide participants throughout the experience of the poverty simulation.

Great-West Life’s volunteer marathon!

About 80 Great-West Life employees show they care as part of the company’s national Day of Caring Project Drive.

Over the past two weeks purple-shirted employees from Great-West Life in Winnipeg gave their time and energy to make Winnipeg better through 10 back-to-back United Way Days of Caring.

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A United Way Day of Caring is a chance for volunteers; usually groups organized through a workplace, to help change lives in Winnipeg by helping community organizations complete short-term projects that need a little extra people power.

Caring, and smiling, at North End Women's Centre Betty Berg House.

Caring, and smiling, at North End Women’s Centre Betty Berg House.

The Days of Caring were part of a national drive by Great-West – a founding partner of United Way of Winnipeg – that saw almost 400 employees helping out with 40 projects in Winnipeg and Montreal, London, Toronto and Regina.

Jan Belanger, Vice-President of Community Relations for Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life, says staff appreciate high-impact volunteer opportunities in their communities.

“Along with building relationships with United Way agencies and the people who benefit from their services, they’re also getting to know their colleagues better, outside of everyday workplace contact.”

The companies organized Days of Caring across Canada to lead off their 2015 United Way workplace fundraising campaigns, Belanger added.

It’s the 3rd year they have done the national blitz of caring, which includes a $500 donation to each agency.

In Winnipeg employees helped out at seven organizations, including several United Way agency partners.

Two separate groups of volunteers spent two days at the Betty Berg House – a house operated by the North End Women’s Centre to help women who have been experiencing homelessness transition their lives to independent living.

Prepping for painting at the Betty Berg House.

Prepping for painting at the Betty Berg House.

The Great-West crews prepared and painted six bedrooms used by women at the house, which had not seen fresh paint in about 10 years.

Making bedrooms bright again.

Making bedrooms bright again.

“It’s amazing, it helps us so much. This house really needed an uplift, and there’s no way I would have had the time to paint the bedrooms,” said house mentor Jenny Foster.

Another Day of Caring winterized a community garden in the West End that has space for growing and playing.

Cleaning up The Kids' Garden

Cleaning up The Kids’ Garden

The Kids’ Garden is maintained by Spence Neighbourhood Association and sits next to the Magnus Eliason Recreation Centre, where SNA runs programming for children and youth.

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Children from SNA’s Building Belonging program – an after school program that provides nutritious food, activities, and help with homework to kids aged 6 to 12 – use the garden space to play in and for growing food that they harvest and eat.

Great-West employees also helped at United Way’s Koats for Kids, Fort Garry Women’s Resource Centre, Pregnancy and Family Support Services, The WestEnd Commons, and Art City. They also acted in volunteer roles for two Living on the Edge poverty simulations, which help participants gain an understanding of the challenges faced by people living in poverty.

Assembling a closet system for the Fort Garry Women's Resource Centre.

Assembling a closet system for the Fort Garry Women’s Resource Centre.

Getting Art City ready for a dinosaur party requires prehistoric scenery.

Getting Art City ready for a dinosaur party requires prehistoric scenery.

Keep scrolling to see photos of the Days of Caring teams!

Bringing the warmth at Koats for Kids.

Bringing the warmth at Koats for Kids.

The Koats for Kids crew helped sort and create bundles of mitts, hats, scarves and coats to keep Winnipeg children warm this winter.

The Koats for Kids crew helped sort and create bundles of mitts, hats, scarves and coats to keep Winnipeg children warm this winter.

On the job cleaning up WestEnd Commons resource centre and common areas.

On the job cleaning up WestEnd Commons resource centre and common areas.

Helpers at the Fort Garry Women's Resource Centre, where they installed a closet system and organized items.

Helpers at the Fort Garry Women’s Resource Centre, where they installed a closet system and organized items.

The painting preppers.

The painting preppers.

The painters.

The painters.

Living on The Edge poverty simulation, first day.

Living on The Edge poverty simulation, first day.

Living on The Edge poverty simulation, second day.

Living on The Edge poverty simulation, second day.

Great-West helpers painted two offices and a kitchen at Pregnancy & Family Support Services.

Great-West helpers painted two offices and a kitchen at Pregnancy & Family Support Services.

Toby Gillies, studio coordinator at Art City, receives a $500 cheque from Great-West volunteers (who also helped build a dinosaur habitat) to help fund their kids' art programs.

Toby Gillies, studio coordinator at Art City, receives a $500 cheque from Great-West volunteers (who also helped build a dinosaur habitat) to help fund kids’ art programs.

Thank you to all the wonderful Great-West Life employees for making Winnipeg better!

Andrea from North End Women's Centre made bannock for both shifts of volunteers at the Betty Berg House!

Andrea from North End Women’s Centre made bannock for both shifts of volunteers at the Betty Berg House!

Volunteer with Youth United!

Calling open-minded, community-committed young Winnipeggers for an amazing volunteer opportunity!

If you’re looking for a great way to help shape the future of Winnipeg, we’d love if you’d share your energy as a Youth United volunteer!

It’s a chance to use your knowledge and talents, and grow your leadership and problem solving skills.

As a Youth United Volunteer, you will:

  • Work with other youth volunteers to plan & participate in events that get youth involved in our community
  • Interact with United Way’s agency partners and learn about the great things they do for our city
  • Represent youth at United Way Winnipeg events, like Campaign Celebration
  • Commit approx 6 hours/month, including 2 hour monthly meetings

You’re a dependable team player who:

  • Has leadership experience
  • Is 16-24 years old
  • Is open-minded and inclusive
  • Is committed to creating a community where everyone has the opportunity to succeed

Youth United Volunteers represent Winnipeg’s diversity and guide United Way’s Youth Engagement Strategy. By giving grants to youth-initiated community projects and hosting events like our Leadership Conference, we create opportunities for youth to get involved in the community. We celebrate youth who are already involved in their communities by giving scholarships and awards.

We are looking for new Youth United Volunteers to join our team in late August. If you’d like to volunteer, or just want more information, please email Samantha, our Youth United manager, or phone her at 204-924-4265.

Richardson’s GenNext volunteers creating a brighter future for Winnipeg.

Richardson International is a key contributor to the United Way through its workplace campaign. During last year’s fall campaign kick-off, Richardson employees had the privilege of hearing Paul Lacap, a member of the Board of Trustees at United Way of Winnipeg, share his experiences with the organization.

In his address, Paul introduced Richardson to United Way’s GenNext initiative, whose main goal is to encourage younger people to become involved with the United Way and help their community.

Paul’s speech inspired Richardson employees to become involved in this great initiative. With Richardson already running one of the most successful United Way workplace fundraising campaigns in Western Canada, it seemed more fitting to base its GenNext contributions on volunteering time rather than raising money.

A core committee of 14 Richardson employees was quickly formed to spearhead the initiative with the main focus on finding quarterly United Way sponsored projects which are both rewarding and enjoyable to participate in.

The first opportunity selected by Richardson’s GenNext committee was the “Rudolph Red Tag Sale and Holiday Party”, a Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Winnipeg initiative.

At this event, children who might not otherwise be able to afford presents purchase donated items from anywhere from five to 25 cents to give to parents and siblings as Christmas gifts.

Twenty Richardson volunteers helped children select and wrap gifts and assist in the making of Christmas crafts. The excitement and enjoyment from all parties involved was infectious and Richardson’s first GenNext project was a huge success.

Richardson Rudolph Red Tag

Richardson’s GenNext pod wrapping gifts for the Rudolph Red Tag sale.

Richardson has since participated in two more day of caring events – RAY’s “Coldest Night of the Year” walk raising money for homeless youth and “Painting the Playroom” at the Wolseley Family Place.

Richardson volunteers.

Raising money for and awareness of youth homelessness in Winnipeg.

Richardson employees who have volunteered for the inaugural events have had a lot of fun connecting with colleagues while making a difference in our community—the pool of engaged employees continues to grow!

Richardson Painting

Richardson volunteers painting the playroom at Wolseley Family Place.

Richardson has reached out to its sister companies, Richardson GMP and Tundra Oil & Gas, to participate in the next event this fall and challenges other companies in Winnipeg to put forth the small time commitment necessary to organize their own GenNext initiative.

A little effort goes a long way to brighten our city’s future!

It’s amazing what young Winnipeggers can do when you believe in their ideas & abilities.

Youth United funds youth-led volunteer projects in Winnipeg, and there are some great ones coming up!

If you have an idea for a volunteer project, check out the criteria & application deadlines.

Let's Talk Science Challenge

Having fun with STEM at the Let’s Talk Science Challenge.

Collège Béliveau: Béliveau Health and Wellness

Student leaders from Collège Béliveau will organize, plan and execute activities and learning session for a school-wide Health and Wellness day. The Health and Wellness day will be open to all students and will focus on positive self-esteem, leadership abilities and community awareness.

Let’s Talk Science: Let’s Talk Science Challenge

Every year students in grade six to eight are invited to the University of Manitoba to participate in the Let’s Talk Science Challenge, a Jeopardy-style quiz show with a design challenge component and mentorship opportunities.

Students compete on teams and are quizzed on their knowledge of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in a fun and friendly atmosphere. The objective of this project is to increase scientific literacy among school-aged children and to expose them to the possibility of considering a postsecondary education in STEM.

Let's Talk Science Challenge!

Let's Talk Science Challenge!

Manitoba Chinese Youth Committee: Cultural Arts Night 2015

Cultural Arts Night 2015 is a festive evening honouring the many diverse cultural communities located in our city. Local performers and cultural teachers of all backgrounds are invited to share their culture and pride through performances and teachings.

Cultural Arts Night 2015 is a celebration that creates a space for audience members to learn about the diversity of our city while developing a greater awareness of our local ethnic communities.

Making Waves Winnipeg: Making Waves Winnipeg Summer Camp Program 2015

Making Waves Winnipeg Summer Camp is a student led initiative that provides children with disabilities the opportunity to attend a summer camp tailored exclusively to their needs. Camp instructors work individually with the campers to create a positive and engaging experience for them. After the weekly one-on-one swimming lessons, there will be additional activities for campers such as arts and crafts, bowling and archery.

Sisler High School: Annual Sustainability Conference

Over 100 students from all over Winnipeg will be invited to attend the Annual Sustainability Conference at Sisler High School. The goal of this conference is to educate students about environmental issues and what students can do to take action.

There will be multiple guest speakers, ranging from local farmers to environmental researchers that will share their experiences and knowledge with attendees. Students involved in the planning of the conference will also be hosting workshops about the environmental initiatives that Sisler employs.

Sisler High School: Franconnexion

Sisler High School will be inviting approximately 200 French immersion students to attend Franconnexion, a day dedicated to promoting the benefits of bilingualism in our community, city, province and our country.

Students will practice their French communication skills through workshops like improvisation, discussions and debates about bilingualism, a scavenger hunt pertaining to Franco-Manitoban culture and traditional French voyageur activities, all of which will be led and facilitated by members of the French Immersion Council at Sisler High School.

These activities are designed to inspire and encourage students to continue using French not only as a skill, but as a way of life through theatre, culture, critical thinking, and sports.

“A place of safety and inspiration.”

United Way volunteer Angie Bruce recently toured the Marlene Street Resource Centre, and was inspired by what she saw there. Or, rather, what she didn’t see.

“After the United Way visit I really felt like it was a space that needed some support and life.

The space that they were working with did not support the growth of the children and families that were accessing their services.

I quickly touched based with a charity, the Dream Room Project, which is close to my heart and asked that they come and make the space a place of safety and inspiration.”

Here are the lovely, inspirational results of people coming together to make a difference right here in Winnipeg.

Hope at Marlene Street Resource Centre.