Companies rally to support the crisis shelter

TORONTO, ON, Feb. 24, 2014 – Covenant House Toronto’s Cause & Effect Campaign asked companies to sponsor a day of shelter at the country’s largest homeless youth agency to care for the up to 94 kids who use its crisis shelter every day.

Covenant House Toronto’s annual Cause & Effect Campaign at Covenant House received support from several major corporations this year, including TD Bank, Barrick Gold, Bentall Kennedy, Sysco and Rockmount Financial Corporation. Individuals and foundations like The Steele Family Foundation have also invested in the shelter program.

The Cause & Effect Campaign asks companies and individuals to sponsor a day or half-day of shelter for each day in February. The funds raised in the campaign go to provide food, shelter, clean clothes, counseling and support staff to support up to 94 kids who use the crisis shelter each day. The gift of shelter is an investment in the future of these youth. Once homeless youth are in the shelter and their basic needs are met, they usually take the opportunity to access some of Covenant House Toronto’s other programs that help them to build a life off the street. These include an onsite school, life skills training, a job search centre and employment training .

The funds are especially needed this time of year. February is when donations are often lower, but the number of homeless youth who come to the agency’s doors to escape the bitter cold is high.

Companies that sponsor a day of shelter often send employee groups to serve lunch to the youth and volunteer with other tasks around the facilities. This gives them an opportunity to see firsthand the services that they are funding and meet some of the youth.

“We are proud to support the youth at Covenant House as they take the next step towards a life of independence and opportunity,” says Alan Convery, Senior Manager, Community Relations, TD Bank Group. “By supporting Covenant House, TD is investing in the future as we strive to make a lasting positive impact in the communities where we live and work.”

This February is the first annual Covenant House Month to raise awareness and funds for the almost 3,000 homeless youth the agency serves every year. The Cause & Effect Campaign provides an opportunity for companies and major donors to make a real impact and participate in a meaningful way.

“When companies donate funds and time, it sends a message to our youth that the community believes in their potential,” says Bruce Rivers, Executive Director of Covenant House Toronto. “If the business community steps up to tell our kids they are worth it, often the kids start to believe it themselves.”

Covenant House Toronto, Canada’s largest homeless youth agency, changes lives by providing the widest range of services and support under one roof, including 24/7 crisis shelter and a longer-term residential program along with comprehensive services, including education, counselling, health care, employment assistance and job training. To do all this, the agency relies on donors for 80 percent of its $20-million annual operating budget.

Contact: Rose Cino
Manager, Communications
(416) 204-7081

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