MONTREAL, Oct. 2, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - Centraide of Greater Montreal launched its 40th annual fundraising campaign at noon today with the March of 1,000 Umbrellas. The goal of this campaign, the biggest movement of caring and solidarity in Quebec, is to raise $57 million by the end of December. That's about $1 million more than last year. This money will be used to support 362 community agencies that help one person in seven in Greater Montreal: young children, youth and families, seniors, newcomers, and people with disabilities or mental health problems.
"Centraide is an important force for social cohesion," said Elliot Lifson, Vice-Chairman of Peerless Clothing, who is also co-chairing the campaign. "I am convinced that will be able to count on the generosity of donors who, year after year, renew their commitment to this vast movement of caring and solidarity that gives us the power to bring about change in our community."
"The proceeds of this campaign will be distributed carefully in the various neighbourhoods of Greater Montreal, where they will help to improve the quality of life of many people," added Monique F. Leroux, Chair of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer of Desjardins Group, who is co-chairing the 2014 Centraide campaign. "I salute the generosity and determination of the ten of thousands of volunteers and donors who will contribute their time and donations. The money collected will allow Centraide to support agencies that help the neediest members of our society."
With the support of 23,000 volunteers, Centraide will raise funds from the general public and from 1,700 corporations and organizations. Visits to community agencies, caring activities and other awareness raising activities will be organized to give donors an even better understanding of the impact of their donations and make sure they realize that the poverty in our neighbourhoods is very real.
"Needs are great in our community," emphasized Lili-Anna Pereša, President and Executive Director of Centraide of Greater Montreal. "Among the large metropolitan areas of Canada, Greater Montreal ranks first in terms of poverty, with 18% of its residents living on a low-income—on the Island of Montreal, the proportion rises to 25%. Centraide wants to help the agencies fill rumbling stomachs, encourage kids to stay in school, allow everyone to find a decent place to live, and break the isolation of seniors."
"Umbrellas Go Free" all autumn
To help maintain awareness of this fundraising campaign, 1,000 umbrellas in Centraide's colours featuring messages of hope will be placed in public places, workplaces and community agencies throughout Greater Montreal. People are invited to use them, take photos with them, and share their photos on social media with the hashtag #WeCentraide in order to express their support for the campaign. This concept, developed free of charge by the agency lg2 and financially supported by the Desjardins Group and Peerless Clothing, aims to remind people throughout the campaign of what an important role the donors and agencies in Centraide's network play in protecting the most vulnerable.
Pedal, run, have fun and give
This year, various sports activities are being organized to allow donors to have fun and meet challenges while giving to Centraide, and to raise even more funds. The 3rd annual Centraide Cup, a corporate soccer tournament held on September 6 and 7, raised a record $465,000. Centraide's first Spin-o-don, a relay bike spinning challenge presented by Desjardins, will be held on October 21 at Complexe Desjardins. And the 17th annual RBC Challenge for Centraide, a relay race up the 41 flights of steps of Place Ville Marie, will take place on November 26.
Contributions to Centraide's campaign are usually made through payroll deduction, in the workplace. People can also make a donation online by visiting Centraide of Greater Montreal's website at www.centraide-mtl.org.
Centraide of Greater Montreal is an independent organization managed by a board of directors that is representative of the community. It serves the Island of Montreal, Laval, and communities on the South Shore. Centraide supports community-based agencies and projects that help half a million people. Some 57,000 volunteers are involved in the agencies supported by Centraide, and another 23,000 work on its annual campaign. Centraide is supported by some 1,700 private and public corporations and organizations as well as by large trade unions.
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SOURCE: Centraide of Greater Montreal
For further information: Annick Gagnon, Public Relations Coordinator, 514 288-1261, ext. 242, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.centraide-mtl.org