CEO Update from United Way KFL&A – August, 2021

Good morning! I hope you are staying safe and healthy and that you are enjoying the summer heat. Fall is just around the corner and so is the United Way Campaign!

This month’s update includes good news about this year’s United Way KFL&A Leadership Challenge Grant, an update on the amazing community response to this year’s Backpack Program and some information about the 2021 United Way Campaign Kickoff. 


In April 2021, United Way KFL&A announced a generous matching grant from Ray and Paul Di Rinaldo and the team at RDR Wealth Management. The grant applied to donations made to the United Way KFL&A COVID-19 Response Fund up to a maximum amount. Thanks to the generosity of our community that maximum has been reached! Thankyou again to Ray and Paul for their generosity and leadership, encouraging our community members to donate and make their donation go even further.

As campaign approaches, a couple in our community has stepped forward to offer this year’s Leadership Challenge Grant.  They wish to remain anonymous and have shared why they chose to step up and provide a Challenge Grant. 

We have always donated to the United Way KFLA because we know that the funds are used right here in our community. During the pandemic, this commitment to the community has been especially important and United Way continues to be an effective leader in addressing the immediate local needs and in helping those that need it most. Our United Way needs the support of our community.  We decided on sponsoring the Leadership Challenge Grant this year as a means to encourage others to show and increase their support so that we can help those suffering in our community.”

For the third year in a row, donors who increase their donations to $1,200+ or make a new $1,200 gift will see their donation matched.  Donors who are already Leaders of the Way (giving $1,200 or more annually) and add 10% or more to their gift will also see their increase matched.

Last year’s Leadership Challenge Grant led to an increase of 18% in leadership donations. Thank you so much to this generous couple!

Look for more information on this year’s Leadership Challenge Grant in the weeks to come as the 2021 Campaign gets underway.


We have learned that this time of year can be anxious and stressful for many families as they do their very best to set their children up for success. This summer United Way KFL&A put a call out for donations to support this year’s local Backpack Program.  

Thank you to all who responded and supported this year’s Backpack Program! A steady stream of individuals and workplaces have been stopping by the United Way offices to drop off backpacks, supplies and financial contributions! 

Volunteers are already busy sorting items and organizing (thank you!) and they will be distributed through agencies and school boards in the coming weeks.

And the giving and generosity doesn’t stop there – this weekend, our partners at Move 98.3 and Pure Country 99 are holding a Drive Thru School Supply Drive at the Cataraqui Centre from 9 am to 1pm on Saturday, August 21. Please stop by if you can.

I can’t say enough about how generous and supportive so many of you have been. It is heartwarming to see this local love, especially during this time which can be challenging for so many.

For more information on the Backpack Program and for information on where to refer someone visit


Speaking of Campaign – Save the Date! This year’s United Way KFL&A Campaign Kickoff will take place on Friday, September 10, 2021 at 7:30am.

While it would be wonderful to gather for breakfast, with health and safety in mind, this year’s kickoff will be virtual.

Please visit our event page for more details and updates in the coming weeks, including a special Women United event about indigenous programs. 


Thank you! Your support continues to change the lives of so many impacted by this pandemic. Thank you for your continued. Please feel free to reach out if you would like more information or just want to chat – I can be reached at 613-929-4828 or by email

Take care. Stay safe and well! 

Bhavana Varma
President & CEO | United Way of Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox & Addington

417 Bagot Street | Kingston, ON | K7K 3C1 |
T: 613-542-2674 Ext.1101 | C: 613-929-4828 | Direct: 613-542-4751 |

You can always stay up to date by following our social media channels – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn and of course, you can find videos at and regular updates on our website at