Last week we were proud to host the third year of our JUST GIVE campaign. We dedicated the day to spreading kindness and motivation through multiple activations in the the GTA. Our mission was simple, inspire kindness and leave an impact in our community. Thanks to all of our generous sponsors and volunteers, this was our most successful year yet!
On June 8th we opened the day bright and early, greeting commuters at Union Station. Everyone was met with a warm smile, well wishes, and a high five, and even the most somber of commuters couldn’t help but flash a smile. The morning was a tremendous success, and CP24 Toronto News was on hand to cover the whole thing. We would like to extend a special thank you to the staff and kids at Irma Coulson Public School for their energy and commitment to change.
From Union Station, our dedicated team of volunteers made their way toward City Hall to kick off the next phase of our JUST GIVE celebrations─ Meagan’s Hug.
Volunteers from Meagan’s Walk and MPCF joined with attendees, gathering around the Podium Rooftop to express our personal thoughts of kindness by writing them on The Wall of Hope. The wall featured large inspirational words of positivity, beautifully designed in a graffiti style by local artist @JackDii, which were proudly displayed facing out over Nathan Phillips Square. Cheerleaders from the Toronto Argonauts were also on the scene to rally the crowd, and inspire as much joy and excitement as they could while everyone shared their messages of hope.
A special thanks goes out to Marant Construction for building this wonderful symbol of kindness and positivity.
Meagan’s Hug’s Denise Bebenek, Michael “Pinball” Clemons, and Mayor John Tory each took to the podium in turn, and passionately spoke about the importance of community, spreading kindness, and giving any way you can. After much anticipation, the onlookers then rallied around the heart of the building, and on the count of three, moved in to embrace the structure. This hug represented our collective love for the city of Toronto and its various groups, and served as a symbol of commitment to our ongoing efforts to spread kindness throughout our daily lives.
As meaningful as the other aspects of JUST GIVE were in their ability to brighten the days of others, none were more impactful than our Cram-a-Cruiser and Cram-a-Curbsider challenges.
In partnering with all eight police services in Ontario’s Golden Horseshoe region, we were able to build upon the past successes of recent years, and enlist schools from across the Province to raise as much non-perishable food items as they could. After collecting for over a month, the officers arrived and the students joined together to cram the police cruiser.
One school which showed a remarkable giving spirit was a small Scarborough school called J.B. Tyrell Senior Public School. With little more than 400 students, they were able to collect a staggering 4,700 lbs. of food in support of the Daily Bread Food Bank!
But help didn’t just come from the schools. We were stunned by the support of the local business community who not only crammed their fair share of Purolator curbsiders, but also provided generous financial support to help combat hunger.
Through the charitable dedication of countless parents, faculty, students, and companies we were able to raise 445,202 lbs. of food in support of the local area food banks! There are many ways to give, but we appreciate everyone who took the time to join us. We were inspired by your efforts and encouragement, and we are excited to grow the JUST GIVE movement.Once more thank you to everyone that made JUST GIVE 2016 a great success.
If your school or business is looking for ways to give back please visit JustGive.ca and join us next year.
“People will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
– Maya Angelou