Introducing the 2018 Spirit Award nominees

United Way Waterloo Region Communities is proud to work with, and through a dedicated list of individuals, organizations, volunteers and agencies. The 2018 Spirit Awards will honour the efforts of all those partners as we move toward our fall campaign.

Nominations revealed for 2018 Spirit Awards

Inspiring examples of Waterloo Region’s community spirit.

The first Spirit Awards presented by the newly integrated United Way Waterloo Region Communities ( will be presented on Thursday, April 25th, at 64 Grand Avenue South in Cambridge, in the Gaslight District.

More than 30 individuals and organizations have been nominated for a Spirit Award in eight distinct categories, including the inaugural Community Leader Award. This award will recognize an exemplary leader who, through extraordinary contributions and outstanding commitment, has driven the spirit of community through personal involvement and initiative.

“We are very excited about this year’s Spirit Awards” says CEO Joan Fisk. “It is not only an opportunity to honour our incredible donors and community members, but a chance to introduce our newly integrated organization. We will also be showcasing our new campaign that will help bring our message to the Waterloo Region Communities and pave the way to the launch of our fundraising campaign on September 17th.

United Way Waterloo Region Communities was formed via the integration of United Way organizations in Kitchener-Waterloo and Area and Cambridge-North Dumfries. The new organization now operates from the very center of the region, at Sportsworld Crossing.

The awards highlight small, medium and large businesses which have shown support and innovation for United Way as well as individuals and supported agencies that have gone above and beyond in working together to address the important issues in our society.

Fisk says all the nominees have shown an exemplary dedication to improving their community through United Way and its partner agencies as well as building a culture where philanthropy and caring can thrive.

The Spirit Awards will be handed out on April 25th,  in the Gaslight District of Cambridge at 64 Grand Avenue S.     Tickets are going fast.  You can click here to reserve yours.



2018 Spirit Award Nominees

Rising Star- Honouring an organization which has shown growth in its United Way Campaign


  • Kitchener-Wilmot Hydro
  • Equitable Life of Canada
  • NewGround
  • Peak Realty
  • Local Health Integration Network

Labour Community Partnership-Celebrating an outstanding relationship between labour and United Way


  • United Food and Commercial Workers Local 175/633
  • Waterloo Regional Labour Council
  • Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario Waterloo Region and Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario Waterloo Region Occasional Teachers
  • Waterloo Regional Police Association
  • International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers local 636

Spirit of Community-honouring an individual or United Way committee whose efforts have raised awareness of the work of United Way


  • Pumpkin Queen of Cambridge  , Kara Klypycz
  • Chris Prosser, The Literacy Group
  • John Neufeld, House of Friendship
  • Tracey Elop, Carizon
  • Julie Phillips, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Waterloo Region
  • Clarion Medical Technologies
  • Regional Municipality of Waterloo United Way Committee

Outstanding Workplace Campaign (Large Organization)


  • Sun Life Financial
  • Manulife
  • Royal Bank of Canada
  • Energy+ Inc.
  • Liquor Control Board of Ontario
  • Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada

Outstanding Workplace Campaign (Small to Mid-Size Organization)



  • P&H Milling Group
  • Lackner McLennan Insurance Ltd. and Erb & Erb Insurance Brokers
  • Deluxe Payroll
  • KW Counselling Services
  • Langs 

Outstanding Volunteer Contribution 


  • Michael Schmitt and Deb Zettel-Schmitt
  • Lorraine Worth & Barb Jones
  • Jaye Kuntz
  • Norma McDonald-Ewing
  • Gore Hearts in Action
  • Deb Lindsay

Outstanding Agency


  • The Literacy Group
  • Kinbridge
  • Carizon
  • Cambridge Self-Help Foodbank
  • Community Support Connections Meals on Wheels and More
  • YMCA