United Way of PEI: staffing structure and impact on the community
by Stacy Dunn
Since 1962, the United Way of PEI has been improving lives and building stronger communities across PEI, working collaboratively with stakeholders, partners, volunteers, and donors.
They are a registered charitable foundation governed by a volunteer Board of Directors, with a small staff and many volunteers. One of its best known fund-raisers is the Workplace Campaign every fall.
For the 2016-2017 year, The United Way of PEI supported 16 projects through 13 local charities. About 600 people volunteer for the organization every year, primarily as canvassers in workplaces across the Island.
“We just developed a new strategic plan,” says Andrea MacDonald, CEO. “Moving forward, we will continue to provide funding to the local experts and organizations to deliver programs across the Island. In addition, we will be working collaboratively with key stakeholders to identify the best role for us in addressing the root causes of poverty. And finally, we will be working with the non-profit sector as a whole, in order to build capacity and facilitate sharing of knowledge.”
Working at a non-profit
A board of 10 directors oversees the organization and a permanent staff of five does the day-to- day work. Andrea has a degree in Recreation Management and a certificate in Project Management. She has spent close to 20 years working for non-profit organizations in Canada and abroad, with a focus on the community and international development. She was hired on as CEO of The United Way of PEI in June 2016.
“I love working in the non-profit sector, I love working with like-minded people and communities looking to impact social change,” she said. “I also have a passion for evaluations and measuring the impact that projects or initiatives have on the community.”
- Chief Executive Officer
- Manager, Resource Development
- Community Impact Facilitator
- Finance Officer
- Office Manager and Finance Assistant
“We hired a student through the Canada Summer Jobs Program and we also have someone on a six-month contract for a Canada 150 project,” Andrea says. “We are open to taking on-the-job training students and having informational meetings with people interested in learning more about what we do.”
“Volunteers are critical to the success of the organization. From a leadership perspective we rely on volunteers on our board of directors and committees.
“We would not be successful in our fundraising without the canvassers, individuals and groups who organize events and opportunities for Islanders to support our work.”
Skills and training required
“Depending on the position advertised, we look at the applicant’s experience and education,” Andrea says, and adds that skills and knowledge are highly regarded.”
Andrea says staff training and development is valuable at United Way and needs are based on the role and the individual requirements. “United Way of PEI often takes advantage of professional development opportunities with its United Way counterparts across Canada.”
The United Way of PEI posts open positions on their own website and through social media and Career Beacon. A committee of people, including the CEO and the staff member supervising the open position, screens and interviews the candidates.
There’s a probation period of three months. Benefits include RRSP matching and a health plan shared by United Way offices in Atlantic Canada.
“During the interview, we ask what the candidate knows about the United Way and try to assess their communication skills,” Andrea says. “Examples of relationship-building and flexibility are important to us.
“Show us passion and commitment to the work we do and a readiness to step up to be a part of our team. We can learn and build from each other and make an impact in the community.”
For more information about the United Way of PEI, contact Andrea MacDonald at 902-894-8202, toll-free 1-877-902-4438 or email [email protected].