Canadian Tire employees reach for the top

    
    Team prepares to climb Mount Kilimanjaro while raising funds for Canadian
    Tire Jumpstart
    

TORONTO, Sept. 21 /CNW/ - A team comprised of 20 Canadian Tire employees, Dealers, family and friends will climb Mount Kilimanjaro next month in an effort to raise funds for Canadian Tire Jumpstart, a community-based program devoted to helping kids in financial need participate in organized sports and recreation. While most of the participants are in average physical condition; none of them have any mountain climbing experience and have dedicated the last year to coming up with creative ways to prepare for the 19,340 foot climb up the highest mountain in Africa.

"One of the things I do to train is climb the stairs in my house - from the basement to the second floor and back down - 100 times per session," said Michael Strachan, member of the Kilimanjaro team and senior vice-president, merchandising, Mark's Work Wearhouse. "I've calculated that this is equivalent to climbing the CN Tower."

Despite the physical demand of the climb and individual goals, all 20 participants have united with the objective of raising funds to help kids in financial need participate in organized sports and recreation. Each participant will pay for their own trip and then raise additional funds for the program. With an initial target of $150,000 in mind (enough to help over 1,500 kids) the goal has since been raised to $200,000 with $173,209 being raised for the program to-date.

"My wife and I have always been involved with kids in our community and this was a way to raise even more money for them," said Gerard Lemay, New Brunswick Canadian Tire Dealer. "The community has been very generous. I started with a goal of $5,000 and then increased it to $10,000. I have now exceeded $22,000 and have since increased my goal to $30,000."

The team will depart from Canada on October 12th. Many of the participants have organized events at local Canadian Tire stores to help raise money and Mark's Work Wearhouse is supporting the climb by outfitting the entire Kilimanjaro team with durable clothing, suitable for the elements of the climb.

To learn more about the participants, their training and fundraising initiatives, or to receive updates throughout the climb, please contact Joanne Elson at: joanne.elson@cantire.com or 416-544-7778. The team's journey up the mountain can also be followed by visiting www.canadiantire.ca/jumpstart.

Canadian Tire Jumpstart(R) is a community-based charitable program that helps underprivileged kids across Canada aged 4-18 participate in organized sports and recreation by covering costs such as registration fees, transportation and equipment. To date, there are 279 Canadian Tire Jumpstart chapters in communities across the country and more than 175,000 kids have been helped by the program.

SOURCE Canadian Tire Corporation, Limited

For further information: For further information: To learn more about the participants, their training and fundraising initiatives, or to receive updates throughout the climb, please contact Joanne Elson at: joanne.elson@cantire.com or (416) 544-7778. The team's journey up the mountain can also be followed by visiting www.canadiantire.ca/jumpstart.

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