Thousands across Greater Toronto reached out this year to the less fortunate and supported United Ways in their communities — from Oakville, Peel and York Regions to Ajax, Pickering and Uxbridge.

United Way Toronto president and CEO Frances Lankin remained cautiously optimistic the $107.5-million goal will be met.

“I have confidence that in difficult times Torontonians will step up to the plate,” she said recently, adding tough times call for extraordinary measures. If necessary, the campaign may be extended as it was last year to meet “urgent human needs.” The final tally will be revealed mid-January.

Money raised in the 2009 campaign will support 200 front-line agencies and programs.