West Island Community Shares launched its 18 th fundraising campaign today with the “Walk for Community Shares”. The group is dedicated to helping West Islanders in need by raising crucial funds for 40 local community groups. More than 300 people participated in the 2-kilometer walk in Dollard-des-Ormeaux in support of West Island Community Shares and as a symbol of solidarity with residents in need. 1 in 5 West Islanders turns to a community group for help every year, including 25,000 children, teens and young adults. “We promise two important things to donors who help us meet our goal of raising $1.2 million this year,” said Caroline Tison, Executive Director.
“Firstly, we understand the needs of our community so donations will be distributed where the impact will be the greatest. Secondly, 100% of donations we receive goes to the community groups we support because corporate partners help to cover our operational costs. The West Island is the only community to implement and sustain such a model for more than 18 years.” The community groups that receive funding from West Island Community Shares offer hope, comfort and support to West Islanders with a broad range of needs. Some do not have enough to eat. Others have cancer or are living with autism, bullying, substance abuse, depression and suicidal thoughts and more. “We have the power to make a difference in the lives of residents in need. That’s why I’m asking West Island citizens and businesses to give generously to the campaign,” added Nada Nasreddine, President of West Island Community Shares.
Ms. Nasreddine also noted that West Island Community Shares is proud to have earned Imagine Canada’s Standards Program Accreditation. The accreditation testifies to its excellence in governance, financial accountability and transparency, fundraising, staff management and volunteer involvement. Only 150 out of the 85,000 registered charitable organizations in Canada have achieved this accreditation.
Participants of the Walk for Community Shares included community group representatives, corporate partners, donors, volunteers and elected officials. They gathered at the Mayor’s Garden in the City of Dollard-des-Ormeaux before leaving on the 2-kilometer walk through the city’s streets. The following event partners were warmly thanked for contributing to the success of the Walk: The City of Dollard-des-Ormeaux, The Beat 92.5, Dagwood’s, IGA Extra Lalonde and Esso.
West Island Community Shares also took the opportunity to launch the 1st Annual Shirley Miller Award. This award will be presented annually to recognize a community leader or community worker employed by 1 of the 40 West Island charitable groups supported by Community Shares. The Shirley Miller Award will recognize a person for his or her outstanding contribution to improving the quality of life of West Islanders. This Award is named in honour of Shirley Miller who ran Pierrefonds Community Project (PCP) for 16 years and who recently passed away. Mrs. Miller was a truly caring and inspiring community leader. Nominations can be sent to Community Shares by December 1st . Donations to West Island Community Shares can be made through its secure Web server at www.communityshares.ca. They can be also be mailed to: West Island Community Shares, 610, boul. St-Jean, #200, Pointe-Claire (QC) H9R 3K2