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The 2015 United Way Campaign Slogan was “We Are Possibility” and over the past year, the meaning of this phrase became acutely evident.

The late 2014 decline in oil prices continued to have significant impacts within our community during the year and continue into this current year. These impacts were felt by the agencies we directly and indirectly support, by government agencies that fund and provide critical partner community programs, and by other charities that parallel their good works within Fort McMurray. The most important impact though, was the resulting increased need by the residents within this community that we all share.

In these challenging times, the board recognizes the intrinsic benefits arising from the operational framework created by the many community leaders that have been part of the United Way over the years. The benefits of the development of a relevant and visionary strategic plan, the appropriate management of short and long term risks, the practice of fiscal discipline and the assessment of future stakeholder needs, all have contributed to the United Way “Making Things Possible” during this challenging 2015.

Our financial performance during 2015 reflects the following milestones;

      • successfully completed capital work and operational transitioning into The Redpoll Centre at Shell Place, expanding capacity building for partner agencies just
      • as community needs were increasing,
      • overall annual total community investment of $7.2M set a new record high,
      • community investment, operational and capital expenditures were ~3% below plan, and
      • annual campaign revenues were $1.5M lower than 2014, requiring agency program support via cash reserves as planned.

More importantly, looking forward to 2016, we are fortunate in that our 2016 campaign funding levels are known, so that we can now best align our expenditure plans accordingly thereby ensuring fiscal and agency / community programs success.

On behalf of the Board of Directors, we confirm that The United Way of Fort McMurray continues to have the commitment of the greatest volunteer contingent, the integral partnership of corporate campaigns, the discipline imposed by robust planning, programs, policies and practices, and the internal organizational strength to meet the challenges in 2016 and beyond.

Respectfully,

Doug G. Simms BComm, CMA, CIA
Treasurer, The United Way of Fort McMurray