News Releases

(HALIFAX, NS) July 11, 2019 – A growth in short-term rentals in Halifax combined with a low vacancy rate is concerning affordable housing advocates at United Way Halifax. They are worried that if the growth of short-term rentals in Halifax continues, it will impact the affordable housing stock that is available in our city. 

Kevin Hooper, manager of partnerships and community development for United Way Halifax, says short-term rentals have a ripple effect. “When someone owns multiple properties and is renting them out short-term rather than on the traditional market, it’s taking away what could be an affordable home for someone,” says Hooper. “The vacancy rate is already lower than we’ve ever seen, and there is considerable competition for fewer available units. We feel it’s important to raise attention to affordable housing crunch being felt in our city.”

Many of Halifax’s short-term rental locations are also in areas where people access employment, schools, childcare and other services. Their proximity to transit, shops and restaurants is likely a selling point for tourists, but it makes it harder for residents. “Potential renters are forced to look elsewhere for housing,” says Hooper. “Sometimes that means going outside the neighbourhood, away from the services and amenities they need on a daily basis.”

While United Way Halifax finds the situation troubling, they also acknowledge that many short-term rental hosts may need to supplement their income by renting out space in their primary residence. The organization is more concerned with hosts who own multiple properties and the affect on residents who just want an adequate and affordable place to live.

About United Way Halifax
United Way Halifax is an impact organization and passionate community-builder. They create opportunities to bring people together and make local issues #UNIGNORABLE. Through funding programs, collaborating with others and advocating for change, they remove barriers for those experiencing poverty and homelessness and make our community more inclusive. They help donors, volunteers, partners and advocates unleash their local love by connecting their desire to make a difference with real impact and meaningful action.


Media Contact:
Sarah White
Communications Specialist


United Way Halifax is investing $1.3M to fund 33 community organizations and 34 programs in 2019-2020 (April 1, 2019 to March 31, 2020).

pdfUnited Way Halifax Funded Agencies 2019-2020

Media Inquiries:

Sarah White
Marketing & Communications Officer


Tuesday, 18 December 2018

Holiday Hours

Our office will be closed at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, December 20, 2018 and will re-open at 8:30 a.m. on Thursday, January 3, 2019.

Donate: Make a donation online and receive an automatic receipt via email.

Looking for help: 211 is a free, confidential information and referral service to more than 3,000 community and social services across Nova Scotia. It is available 24 hours a day, 356 days a year. Dial 2-1-1 to speak to a staff member or visit

Questions: If you have any questions during our holiday closure, please email or leave a voicemail at (902) 422-1501. Voicemails will be responded to within one business day and emails will be responded to when the office re-opens on January 3.

Thank you and we wish everyone a very happy holiday season and all the best for 2019!


October 11, 2018

Sarah White
Marketing & Communications Officer
United Way Halifax


United Way and Pantone Color Institute join forces to make local issues unignorable

You can’t solve a problem if you don’t know it exists. In our busy world, important local social issues can often go unnoticed. United Way wants to change that. That’s why, United Way has partnered with the Pantone® Color Institute™ to create Unignorable – a brand new colour developed specifically to highlight local issues and bring attention to the millions of Canadians impacted by them. This new colour is the foundation of the United Way’s largest national integrated public awareness campaign to date.

The multi-media, fully integrated national campaign, draws on a long tradition of art for social change. It includes images designed by award-winning international illustrator Malika Favre, whose bold pieces have appeared on the cover of The New Yorker and within campaigns for Vogue, BAFTA and Sephora. Favre’s customized designs will captivate onlookers with the Unignorable colour at the forefront, while the illustrations will command attention for issues that hold too many Canadians back: poverty; youth unemployment; social isolation; domestic violence; hunger; mental health; education inequality; and homelessness.

If you want to experience Unignorable, join United Way Halifax this Saturday at Nocturne.

Date: Saturday October 13, 6PM-Midnight
Location: FBM | 1660 Hollis Street (HS1), Halifax

(HALIFAX, NS)  SEPTEMBER 4, 2018 – The Halifax Assistance Fund (HAF) is partnering with United Way Halifax and Volta to host the second annual Harold Crowell Social Innovation Awards. Online nominations open today and will celebrate the vision, creativity and accomplishments of community champions who are finding new ways to tackle the issues of poverty.

A total of $10,000 will be awarded to the top three finalists, to invest directly into the poverty initiatives, social enterprise, project or program for which they are nominated. Senator Colin Deacon, who led the creation of the Awards for the HAF is pleased to be able to offer the awards for a second year. “We were really impressed by the quality of the nominees last year,” says Deacon. “Our community has many talented social innovators who are finding creative ways to make a real difference in the lives of the people and the organizations they serve.”

Last year, Jessie Jollymore took home the top prize for her work with Hope Blooms and other community projects in North End Halifax. Deborah Dickey, executive director of the Dartmouth North Community Food Centre and Melissa Phillips of Shelter Nova Scotia were also finalists.
Nominations will be reviewed by a selection panel made up of representatives and volunteers from the Halifax Assistance Fund, United Way Halifax and Volta, as well as community members. The awards will be presented on Wednesday, November 14 and a Social Innovation Summit will celebrate the nominees and the potential of social innovation, on November 24. Full details about the awards can be found at

About these awards
The Halifax Assistance Fund, United Way Halifax and Volta are partnering to deliver the Harold Crowell Social Innovation Awards. The late Harold Crowell, a long time Halifax Assistance Fund board member, is widely recognized as Halifax’s original “social innovator”. A key goal of this awards program is to engage individuals from the social sector, business and tech start-up communities to foster an active culture of innovation that has meaningful impact in the Halifax Regional Municipality.

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Media Contact:
Sarah White
Marketing & Communications Officer,
United Way Halifax


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