Moving people from poverty to possibility

Poverty isn't just about a paycheque. In fact, it touches almost every aspect of a person's life from food, shelter and employment, to mental and physical well being. It's a social and economic issue that impacts our entire community. The United Way Durham Region is committed to moving people from poverty to possibility by providing the essential building blocks of a good life: food, shelter, and employment.

Food Security


Food security is a serious challenge in our community. In Durham Region, roughly 78,000 people are without regular and reliable access to healthy - that's 12% of all households.

The impact of chronic food insecurity on mental and physical well being can be devastating for an individual, their loved ones, and our community.


Last year, the United Way Durham Region helped 16,000 people gain access to food banks, community gardens, and nutritious food preparation and budgeting training.

With your help this year, we can go even further. Your support of the United Way can help make sure that no one in our community has to go without food.

Housing Stability


Today, the average price of a one-bedroom rental unit in Durham Region is $1,048. This represents and increase of 22% over the last 5 years. With rising costs of living, many are turning to affordable housing programs - where the wait can be as long as 8 years.

The United Way is committed helping as many people in our community has a place to call home.


Last year, your support of the United Way helped over 2,000 men, women, and children to receive emergency shelter.

Among those, was Darcy.

Darcy was stuck in a revolving street life community. With dedication and a helping hand from Cornerstone, a United Way funded agency, Darcy has found stability and hope. You can read Darcy's full story here.

Every dollar you designate towards shelter and housing has a significant impact. Here are some figures for your consideration:

  • $5 provides one meal for someone who is homeless, giving them refuge in a safe environment
  • $50 provides a frost prevention kit for two homeless people, including a scarf, toque, gloves, and pocket warmers.
  • $260 will provide a family good quality used furnishings for one living room.



The world of work is rapidly changing. Compared to the previous generation, Canadians today change jobs 22% more often, and have 15 jobs in their careers on average. Job hopping is the new normal.

Navigating this new landscape can be challenging and, over time, employment insecurity has a negative effect on well-being and community connections.

That's why the United Way is committed to empowering individuals to find meaningful employment in Durham Region.


What does your donation look like? It looks like Paul.

Paul, a teen parent, thought his only option was to drop out of school and find a job to support his family. John Howard Society, a United Way Funded agency, helped him to see he had other roads available.

You can read about Paul's journey here.

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