How to run a successful campaign

Our community can't recover without YOU


COVID-19 has significantly impacted our friends and neighbours who were already vulnerable. The pandemic has pushed them, and our community, to the breaking point. Your workplace campaign is a vital part of helping our community recover. Your generosity—and the generosity of your colleagues—will fuel our work and the work of our 26 local agencies working on the frontlines providing life-saving support for the people and families who need our help the most.


This toolkit includes everything you need to run a seamless and successful United Way workplace fundraising campaign—whether your employees are working remotely or in the office. All easy to access and easy to use.

In this toolkit you will find:

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Note: You can skip ahead to what you need by browsing the categories to the left, using the menu bar on the left of your screen or check out all this tool has to offer by scrolling the lessons below.

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Fundraise for United way

Inspiring others to participate in your workplace campaign begins with understanding the issues that affect our community and how United Way is committed to helping people and families across our region build better lives—both today and in the future.

Continue below to learn more about how United Way is taking action to tackle local issues, including poverty, hunger and mental illness.

Our community can’t recover without you

United Way Central Alberta sustains a vital social safety net that provides thousands of people—your friends, neighbours and family—with much-needed support, year-round. We’re there every day. During times of stability and those of crisis.  


Our network of 26 community agencies—a network made possible thanks to people like you—was on the frontlines, immediately jumping into action to meet urgent needs.

When our community was  impacted by COVID-19, we faced unprecedented challenges—and met them, head on. 

COVID-19 has stretched the social services sector to its limits, pushing some of the most vulnerable in our community even further into crisis. 

Now, more than ever, we need volunteer leaders like you. When you show your local love—giving generously of your time and talents—you sustain people, families and entire neighbourhoods, and inspire others to take action and change lives.

Meeting need with action

Before, during and after this crisis, our goal is to work with local partners in, and for, community to meet urgent and ongoing needs with swift, impactful action. 

Read to complete

A great fundraising campaign starts with you

Although many of us are working remotely, the need in our community continues to grow. As an Employee Campaign Chair (ECC), you have the opportunity to bring your colleagues together to support their local communities through an exciting and engaging virtual fundraising campaign. 

We’ve got all the tools you need to help support your fundraising efforts. Whether virtual or in person, planning a great campaign is as easy as 1-2-3:

Set your fundraising goal

The most effective way to motivate yourself and others is by setting a goal and working towards it. 

By setting a realistic and attainable fundraising goal, you will set the stage for giving and give your colleagues something to work towards.

Not sure how to set a goal? Reach out to your United Way staff partner, or check out the resource below.

Campaign volunteers celebrating achieving their fundraising goals at a United Way recognition event.

Build your team

Assemble a superstar team to help you plan your campaign. 

Whether remote or in-person, having your Ambassadors make a personalized one-on-one ask is key to achieving your fundraising goals.

Your employee giving champions

The key to achieving your fundraising goal? Your Ambassador team! 

Your Ambassadors are the employees on the front lines of your giving campaign, sharing information, answering questions and building enthusiasm for your campaign. 

Everything your Ambassadors need to get inspired and motivated to engage their colleagues can be found in our Campaign Guide. You’ll also learn more about asking for donations in the next section on Achieving your Fundraising Goals.

Ready to launch!

Once you decide on your team and your goals, your next step is to build and execute on an exciting calendar of events! Explore the next section to learn more about the proven strategies and resources our top corporate partners use to ensure campaign success. 

Let’s make a difference!

Once you decide on your team and your goals, your next step is to determine the timeline and strategies you will need to achieve them. Explore the sample campaign calendar to learn more about the proven strategies and resources our top corporate partners use to ensure campaign success.


A great campaign begins with an exciting kick-off 

Start your campaign off right. As you begin your United Way workplace campaign, a kick-off has many benefits:

The end of your campaign is a time to celebrate your achievement, thank your supporters and set yourself up for success next year. Follow these steps to ensure the perfect wrap: 


All money received through your workplace campaign should be collected, counted and remitted on a regular basis and in adherence with United Way’s policies regarding financial best practices. 

For everything you need to know about processing donations, check out our Finance Guide.

Should you have any questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch at


People won’t necessarily remember how they were thanked, but they will remember if they were never thanked at all, so it’s important to thank your donors, volunteers, senior leadership and suppliers for all they have done to make your campaign a success. 

Consider ways to use existing recognition structures within your workplace, as well as formal channels (e.g., emailing certificates to your volunteers and publicly recognizing them at your virtual wrap-up event, or publishing volunteer names on your intranet) and informal channels (e.g., a handwritten thank-you note sent by mail to committee members, or a phone call to high-value donors), to thank your colleagues. 


After all your hard work, take some time to capture your successes and areas of opportunity for next year. 

By recording your efforts and their impact on your campaign, you will be setting up next year’s Campaign Chair and Campaign Committee for success, ensuring your organization and its employees will continue to make a positive impact in your community. 

Reach out to your United Way staff partner to help you capture key information and put together some preliminary strategies for your next campaign.

Thank you.

Every year, 20,000+ volunteers join United Way in fighting local poverty in all its forms across Alberta. Thank you, again, for showing your local love—giving your time and energy to support this important and ongoing work across the region. 

employee engagement & event activities

This section will take you through in-person and online engagement activities connected to United Way’s mission. Alongside these engagement opportunities are tips, templates, guides and suggestions on how to get the most out of these activities. To request more information or book any of the activities, email

Inspiring donors through stories and experiences

Engagement activities are community-focused opportunities to gain a deeper understanding of how donations to United Way are being invested to achieve positive impact in communities across the Central Alberta Region.

Key benefits


Can you Make the Month?  

Living on a limited budget is tough and for those living in poverty making the month can be a difficult challenge. Try, the first online poverty simulator in Canada, on your own, with your family or colleagues at work and see if you can make the month. Raise empathy and awareness about poverty in our local communities by doing this activity in a group followed by a discussion for people to share their learning and thoughts about the experience. To learn more about these activities, contact your United Way partner or email


For more great ideas check out our Engagement Menu


United Way Central Alberta offers event opportunities for every audience over the course of the year. Whether looking to run an event for your workplace or to join a United Way public event, there are so many reasons to have special events as part of your workplace campaign.

Whatever your reason, a great event is a balance of three components:


TIP:  Run special events after your pledge drive, otherwise your colleagues may feel like they’ve already given before they have had the opportunity to pledge.

Click to view our Virtual Fun-raising Ideas Document

Personal stories to inspire

Hearing a personal story from a United Way Speaker is an excellent way for employees and donors to learn how donations are used to build a better, stronger future for our region. Our speakers are available to virtually attend meetings, town halls, lunch and learns, campaign kick-off, fundraising events, etc.  

Edie Hiebert, Campaign Cabinet Co-Chair, shares her story at United Way’s Celebration Breakfast event, on how UW’s network of donors helps our community and families through homelessness, unemployment and mental health.

Who are our speakers? 

Speakers are agency staff, board members, volunteers or service recipients of United Way agencies, as well as United Way staff. Speakers have a good understanding of the impact agencies and programs are having in their communities. Speakers can be selected according to your company’s area of interest and can join you virtually to share their heartfelt experiences. 

To book a speaker for your campaign event or meeting, contact your United Way Staff Partner or email

Great stories shared by great volunteers 

If you are unable to schedule a speaker, there are many great Ambassador video stories contained in the Resource Library

Marketing Materials & Resource Library

So what’s the secret sauce to getting people involved in your United Way campaign and driving more donation dollars? A key ingredient is appealing to both the rational and emotional sides of the brain. Specifically, donors need to feel like the non-profit they’re supporting is impactful (left side) and be able to connect with it emotionally (right side). 

The resources found below will help you strike that winning balance and meet your fundraising goals–and in doing so, make a huge positive impact in your community that you can be proud of.

Everything at your fingertips

Below you will find links to all of the helpful resources available throughout this toolkit.


Access Library

What people are saying

More Material

You might also be interested in our covid-19 response

We are in this Together

The fall-out of COVID-19 has put immense pressure on our social services fabric for things like basic needs, help for seniors and those living in shelters, support for individuals self-isolating, resources and equipment for volunteers, and mental health services.

Local love in a global crisis

Read about our response funds and how we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic.