Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities Celebrates Milestone of Helping One Million Kids 'Get in the Game'

TORONTO, Sept. 15, 2015 /CNW/ - Today, Jumpstart celebrated helping one million children across Canada participate in organized sport and physical activity.  Following a Jumpstart Games event where 300 local children participated in a day of play, employees from Canadian Tire Corporation, the Jumpstart team, athlete ambassadors, community partners, volunteers, Jumpstart's Chairman, Owen Billes and Jumpstart's Founder, Martha Billes, joined together to thank those who have contributed to the charity's success over the past 10 years.

"On behalf of everyone at Jumpstart, we want to thank our many supporters from coast-to-coast for helping us reach this incredible milestone. Helping one million kids get off the sidelines and into the game is just the beginning," said Jumpstart's President, Landon French. "Under the leadership of long-time supporter and Jumpstart's new Chair Owen Billes, we're committed to providing one million more kids the opportunity to learn and grow through sport."

Jumpstart athlete ambassadors Damian Warner, Kaillie Humphries, Benoît Huot and Rosie MacLennan were also on-site to reiterate the many benefits being active has for kids. To further awareness about the charity's success, Jumpstart is running a multi-platform campaign across its retail businesses; with Canadian Tire's creative featuring long-time athlete ambassador, hockey player Jonathan Toews through to October 11.            

"Having the opportunity to play sports at a young age shaped who I am today. Appreciating the many benefits of physical activity is part of the reason why I became a Jumpstart ambassador," said Jonathan Toews, Olympic Gold Medallist, Hockey and Jumpstart ambassador. "I'm proud to help Jumpstart announce such an incredible milestone – one million kids being given the chance to try out sports and discover their passion."

Jumpstart is dedicated to maintaining this momentum.  In addition to ongoing options for consumers to donate, Jumpstart holds annual fundraising campaigns including Employees for Giving and Red Ball Month. The charity maintains its relevancy through the support of Dealers, store employees and a network of community partners that form over 300 chapters nationwide. Jumpstart has also made it easier for parents in need to access funding support by launching their call-in number (1-844-YES-PLAY) and online applications at jumpstart.canadiantire.ca.

Launched in 2005, Jumpstart helps kids aged four to 18 from financially disadvantaged families enrol in sport and physical activities, operating under the belief that every child deserves the chance to play. In 10 years, it has grown into one of Canada's largest charities, helping 200,000 kids in 2014 alone. While Jumpstart is national in scope, support provided is localized by directing 100 per cent of customer donations to the community in which they were made.

About Canadian Tire Jumpstart:
Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities is a national charity dedicated to providing kids from low-income families with the opportunity to experience the benefits of organized sports and physical activities. With an extensive, national network of more than 330 local chapters, Jumpstart helps kids in communities across Canada by assisting with the costs associated with registration, equipment and/or transportation. Supported by the Canadian Tire Family of Companies, which includes Canadian Tire, PartSource, Gas+, Sport Chek, Atmosphere, National Sports, Sports Experts, Mark's and Canadian Tire Financial Services, Jumpstart has enabled more than one million Canadian kids and counting to get in the game since 2005.

Follow Jumpstart on Twitter and Facebook to learn about how the charity is giving kids across Canada a sporting chance.

SOURCE Canadian Tire Jumpstart

Image with caption: "Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities kicked-off a millionth child helped celebration as 50 cyclists completed the sixth annual Pedal for Kids fundraiser – a five-day bike ride in support of the charity. Jumpstart Founder Martha Billes was joined by athlete ambassadors, local Jumpstart kids, Community Partners, volunteers and employees. (CNW Group/Canadian Tire Jumpstart)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20150915_C6126_PHOTO_EN_497657.jpg

For further information: Candice Bruton, Communications Advisor, Canadian Tire Corporation, candice.bruton@cantire.com, 416-520-3184

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