Francis Bouillon launches the 2008 Step Up for the Children with Standard Life campaign

    Objective: $400,000 to benefit the Foundation of Stars

    MONTREAL, March 20 /CNW Telbec/ - Montréal Canadiens defenceman Francis
Bouillon is joining the Standard Life team as the ambassador of the annual
fundraising campaign Step Up for the Children with Standard Life to benefit
the Foundation of Stars. On Tuesday, March 25, in the main hall of the Maison
Standard Life, Francis Bouillon will launch the 2008 campaign and encourage
participants in a stationary bike-a-thon. The media are invited to the event
at 4:30 p.m.
    "We are very pleased that Francis Bouillon has agreed to join our team.
This year, we hope to raise over $400,000 for research into children's
diseases and we are certain that Mr. Bouillon's support will give us the help
we need to reach our goal," explained Joseph Iannicelli, Standard Life's
President and Chief Executive Officer. "The employees of Standard Life are
extremely proud to have succeeded in raising close to $7 million over the past
25 years and it is a privilege to be able to count on Mr. Bouillon's
involvement in our continued efforts."
    The bike-a-thon is the first in a series of activities organized by
Standard Life employees to raise money for the Foundation of Stars. The
campaign will top off with the annual grand family day celebration (formerly
known as the Standard Life Marathon) on Saturday, June 14, 2008 at Parc
Jean-Drapeau on Ile Sainte-Hélène.

    Team up with Francis

    For the 26th consecutive year, a few thousand people are expected to
attend the Step Up for the Children with Standard Life event on June 14, 2008.
The program includes a 10 km race, a 5 km walk and a host of activities for
the young and the young-at-heart. "I invite people to join me in helping the
advancement of research," Mr. Bouillon noted. People can register, raise money
or make a donation at or obtain additional
information by calling 514-759-7565.
    Mr. Bouillon is counting among his first team members 11-year-old Valérie
Bernier, who will accompany him at Step Up for the Children with Standard Life
activities. Valérie is currently battling osteosarcoma, a form of cancer,
which led to the partial amputation of one of her legs. "On June 14, 2008, I
will participate in the 5 km walk with my mom and I hope a lot of other
children and families will join us," said Valérie.

    Where do the donations go?

    "It's extraordinary-Standard Life is paying all the costs related to the
campaign and has been counting on the support of sponsors. That means that all
of the money raised will go to helping children like Valérie," Mr. Bouillon
added. The money raised by individuals, teams and companies will be donated to
the Foundation of Stars, the largest source of non-government funding for
children's health research in Quebec. The Foundation supports research into
children's diseases at the Centre hospitalier universitaire Sainte-Justine,
the Montreal Children's Hospital, the Centre hospitalier universitaire de
Québec and the Centre hospitalier universitaire de Sherbrooke.
    "This year, our 175th anniversary in Canada, Step Up for the Children
holds particular importance. It has become a major event in Montreal, where
our head office is located and where most of our employees work. The event
reflects our unwavering commitment to our community over the years," added
Mr. Iannicelli.

    About Standard Life

    In 2008, Standard Life, the first life insurance company to transact
business in Canada, marks its 175th year of operations. Standard Life plc is a
major international financial services group headquartered in Scotland. It
provides asset-managing services for retirement, investment and protection to
some seven million customers globally. It has offices in the United Kingdom,
Canada, Ireland, Germany, Austria, India and China, including Hong Kong.
    The Standard Life Assurance Company of Canada is Standard Life plc's
largest operation outside the U.K., with 1,900 employees based in Montreal and
across Canada, serving more than 1.3 million Canadians, including group
insurance and pension plan participants. (

For further information:

For further information: Emmanuelle Rondeau, Expression Communications
for Standard Life, (514) 347-1114,; Note
to media: On March 25, parking will be available in Maison Standard Life; At
1245 Sherbrooke Street West - accessible via de la Montagne Street; Please
reserve with Emmanuelle Rondeau, (514) 347-1114,

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