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Compassion in the face of great uncertainty

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit and pushed us into lockdown last March, all 11 United Ways across Atlantic Canada mobilized to raise funds to meet sudden and basic needs in our communities, establishing the Atlantic Compassion Fund.

The generosity was immediate. Atlantic Business Interiors was the founding donor of the ACF, matching the first $100,000 in donations across Atlantic Canada, and thoughtful organizations and citizens across all four provinces stepped up.

This meant more than $285,000 for aid here for the Saint John, Kings & Charlotte region, helping our community organizations meet pressing needs of those most marginalized, react to evolving and emerging community needs and to support initiatives that are rebuilding and bringing our community back together.

A heart-warming example of how this generosity brought compassion in anxious times was at the Eastern Charlotte Association for Community Living, which was able to connect two close friends with intellectual disabilities on regular video calls through loaner tablets.

Both young men are non-verbal but are accustomed to seeing each other every day through programming offered by the association. The COVID-19 pandemic forced them to isolate with their families, leaving them more than 200 kilometres apart. Through the Atlantic Compassion Fund, these pals are able to reconnect and see each other every day.

This is just one small but meaningful example of the impact the fund made during uncertain times, and we are grateful for how donors and organizations alike rallied to help. For more information, see the Atlantic Compassion Fund page on our website.