On March 19, BMO announced a $1 million donation to United Way to support gaps in community services urgently needed for vulnerable individuals impacted by the public health, social and economic consequences of COVID-19. As a first step, funds donated will be provided via United Way to communities across Canada affected by the virus.
“Every business can be a catalyst for change in their communities – this belief fuels our Purpose, to Boldly Grow the Good in business and life. Supporting the United Way and their work with front-line community agencies enables us to quickly and effectively contribute to the fight against COVID-19,” said Darryl White, Chief Executive Officer, BMO Financial Group. “We are deeply grateful for the tireless dedication of workers providing essential services in our communities, including our own. Working together we will overcome the health and economic challenges we’re facing. As individuals and companies consider options to make an impact by making a donation, I encourage them to use the United Way’s unique ability to distribute funding throughout their network of agencies to where it’s needed most.”
United Way will provide flexible resources to vulnerable people within communities nationally, which may include but are not limited to:
- Help for seniors to ensure that while isolated, they are also supported
- Basic needs to ensure isolated people have access to food, supplies, and necessities
- Mental health support to enable a continuum of supports, from soft reach outs to distress and crisis supports
- Support for volunteers to ensure they can work with the network of agencies to meet needs in a coordinated and safe way
- Capacity for community services to ensure they can continue to do their vital local work and reach out to those most isolated
BMO is a long-time partner of United Way in its Building Strong Neighbourhoods initiatives to overcome challenges to inclusive economic opportunity. We are a founding partner of the Inclusive Local Economic Opportunity initiative, a ground-breaking effort spearheaded by BMO and United Way Greater Toronto that brings together business and community leaders to work together in reducing economic disparity. The bank has extended this model to Chicago. BMO previously donated $10 Million to United Way in each community to support these efforts. Additionally, in 2019, BMO employees donated more than $22 million to United Way and other charities through the annual BMO Employee Giving Campaign.
Today’s announcement builds upon BMO’s commitment to support the well-being of clients and team members though this period of uncertainty. Initiatives include a financial relief program for clients directly affected by COVID-19, as well as proactive measures to help limit the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health and safety of clients, team members, and the communities where the bank operates.