Congratulations to the 2015 Aviva Community Fund winners! (VIDEO)

Seventh year of competition concludes, brings total donations to over $6.5 million

TORONTO, Dec. 2, 2015 /CNW/ - Aviva Canada, one of the country's leading providers of home, auto, leisure/lifestyle and business insurance, is pleased to announce the 15 grand prize winners of the $1,000,000 Aviva Community Fund.

In November, we announced the 30 great ideas, projects and initiatives that qualified for the finals of the Aviva Community Fund competition, after over 548,000 votes were cast by Canadians during the 18 day voting period. The winners have been selected by a panel of independent judges. Each of the finalists will receive at least $5,000 toward their cause or a registered charity of their choosing that is engaged in similar work.

"We continue to be impressed with all of the great ideas submitted to the Aviva Community Fund, and it's clear that investing in our communities is near and dear to the hearts of Canadians," said Debora Hendrickson, Senior Vice President, Customer and Marketing at Aviva Canada. "Congratulations to this year's ACF winners, bringing our donation total over the past seven years to over $6.5 million shared by 222 great projects across the country."

And the winners are:

Category: Community Resilience (environment, climate, disaster relief and prevention)

  • Asphalt to Oasis - the Greening of the St. Anthony yard (Ottawa, ON) - $100,000
    Old asphalt will be replaced with a water permeable, child-friendly surface that allows rainwater to drain into the soil rather than pollute the rivers through the sewer system
  • Emma's Acres: Reintegration, Restoration and Food Security (Mission, BC) - $45,000
    Together victims/survivors of crime, offenders and ex-offenders grow organic vegetables, herbs and fruits for sale at local markets and for donation to food banks and community kitchens
  • Grand nettoyage de la rivière Mascouche (Mascouche, QC) - $48,000
    Debris in the community's main waterway will be removed and turned into a work of art, raising awareness for recycling and the impact of pollution

Category: Community Health (health, sport, active living and play)

  • Bloc sanitaire pour la FCP / Sanitary block for the FCP (Lévis, QC) - $50,000
    Updating the facilities in this therapeutic riding centre for disabled individuals to comfortably serve visitors' basic needs
  • Friends of the Arena (FOTA) Westport ON Community Centre (Westport, ON) - $50,000
    Upgrading the arena's aging infrastructure
  • Hagersville Park Splash Pad Project (Hagersville, ON) - $50,000 *Broker Supported Grand Prize *
    Construction of a new accessible splash pad to be enjoyed by the children of Hagersville and five surrounding communities
  • Hard-up in the Hazeltons (Hazelton, BC) - $100,000
    A new outdoor arena will offer hockey, figure skating, school and public programming to an economically-challenged community
  • Help the St. John's Farmers' Market move to its new home! (St. John's, NL) - $50,000
    The new site featuring more space for vendors to sell healthy produce locally, a community kitchen, a public square, a playground and much more
  • Sacha's Park - where EVERYONE can play! (L'Orignal, ON) - $100,000
    A new fully-accessible playground so no child will feel left out because of a disability
  • Wayne John Searle Memorial Rec Complex Needs a Makeover!! (Placentia, NL) - $50,000
    A safe and accessible playground to bring life, laughter and play back into an important community hub

Category: Community Development (education, skills training, culture, research and basic needs)

  • Hope Begins With A Meal #SoulsHarbour (Halifax, NS) - $100,000
    An ACF winner two years in a row, phase two funding will enable expanded hours of operation, fully accessible washrooms, and much more
  • River Mill Park Bandshell (Huntsville, ON) - $30,000
    Completion of a permanent bandshell in downtown Huntsville, where residents and tourists enjoy local community concerts and celebrations
  • SideDoor Youth Centre Facility Project (Edmonton, AB) - $50,000
    Increasing the current 2 days per week after school drop-in program for grade 6-12 students to expand their services to 5 days a week
  • Support children affected by parental incarceration (Toronto, ON) -$50,000
    An after-school peer mentorship program for vulnerable children and youth affected by parental criminality and imprisonment
  • Taking The Mount Community Centre to new levels (Peterborough, ON) - $100,000
    Installing a new elevator so residents can move freely throughout a complex that offers affordable housing and a harvest centre for low-income families

Funding awarded to grand prize winners was based on the amount requested in their idea submission.

Finalists receiving $5,000

  • Advancing Research-Myalgic Encephalomyelitis & Fibromyalgia  (Toronto, ON)
  • Agriculture urbaine sur le toit d'un CPE (Garderie) (Montréal, QC)
  • Cultiver la solidarité ; le Potager de l'école d'Oka (Oka, QC)
  • Foreshore to Forest: Restoring Shawnigan Lake's Watershed (Shawnigan Lake, BC)
  • From the Road to Recovery - Healthy Turtles, Healthy Wetlands (Selwyn, ON)
  • Habitat Restoration for Atlantic salmon and native species (Sherbrooke, NS)
  • Help LAWS' Community Programs (Smiths Falls, ON)
  • Help Us Help Our Schoolyard (Whitby, ON)
  • Let kids be kids with a natural playground for Blake! (Toronto, ON)
  • Manitoba Stampede Grandstand Restoration (Morris, MB)
  • Mettez du vent dans les voiles des jeunes / Get Kids Sailing (Montréal, QC)
  • Numérisation du Fonds Rosaire Vigneault & climatisation (Les Îles-de-la-Madeleine, QC)
  • Pathway to Progress (Tecumseh, ON)
  • The Temple of Light Goes Green! (Kootenay Bay, BC)
  • Turning the Tide for Turtles (Toronto, ON)

**$5,000 donation is made on behalf of each non-grand prize winning finalist to a registered charity of their choice.

About Aviva Canada
Aviva Canada is one of the leading property and casualty insurance groups in Canada providing home, auto and business insurance to more than three million customers. The company is a wholly-owned subsidiary of UK-based Aviva plc and has more than 3,000 employees, 25 locations and 1,700 independent broker partners.

For more information visit avivacanada.com, our blog or our Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn pages.

SOURCE Aviva Canada Inc.

Video with caption: "VIDEO: Congratulations to the 2015 Aviva Community Fund winners!". Video available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/cgi-bin/playback.cgi?file=20151202_C5856_VIDEO_EN_557053.mp4&posterurl=http%3a%2f%2fphotos.newswire.ca%2fimages%2f20151202_C5856_PHOTO_EN_557053.jpg&order=1&jdd=20151202&cnum=C5856

For further information: Media Contacts: Glenn Cooper, Senior Manager, Public Relations and Social Media, Aviva Canada Inc., Desk: (416) 288-2685, Mobile: (416) 523-3225, glenn_cooper@avivacanada.com

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