Paying it forward: Cathy

Cathy Ta was born in a refugee camp. Her parents were boat people from Vietnam.

Although she was too young to remember what it was like when she first arrived in Canada, she knows that her family had financial challenges and language barriers. They arrived with nothing – not even winter coats. “We didn’t know what snow was. We didn’t know what winter was!” she says.

But thanks to donors like you, her family got the help they needed from different agencies funded by United Way. Now Cathy is paying that forward. She supports United Way.

“For me to be able to get that help and then return that help – it’s a full cycle,” said Cathy.

“Right now there is a big focus on refugees. United Way was one of the first organizations to say let’s help these people. That had a huge impact on me because I’m a refugee.”

Cathy is more than a United Way donor. She also spent four months helping fundraise for United Way through the Campaign Associate program. The thing she was struck by the most was our common goal of wanting to help each other and “to make our local communities and our country a better place to live.”

Thank you for helping make our city a better place to live.





Because of you, this mother of four is learning to read.


Nabila, a mother of four moved to Canada from Afghanistan 12 years ago. Although her children were learning to read and write at their new school, she was struggling to get by in her new community.


Click here to read Nabila’s story.




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