MONTREAL, DECEMBER 15, 2011 – The English Montreal School Board (EMSB) teamed up with the Canadian Armed Forces to once again support CTV Montreal’s annual “Spirit of Giving” campaign, which brings much needed assistance to the less fortunate throughout Montreal. The EMSB Spiritual Community Animation Service and Communications and Marketing Division coordinated the program this year.
From December 6 to 14, non-perishable food, toys and miscellaneous items, such as soap and cleaning supplies, were collected, sorted and donated to Dans la Rue, Share the Warmth, West Island Assistance Fund, Multicaf, N.D.G. Food Depot and the Park Extension Share Store. In all, the combined efforts of the EMSB, its schools and facilities generated over 600 boxes of non-perishable food, and over 40,000 toys and miscellaneous items.
Twenty five schools and centres took part in the campaign. St. Henri’s James Lyng High School served as the main hub for the collection. “Our students, staff and community understand the need for such campaigns,” said James Lyng Principal Angela Vaudry. “It was gratifying to see our students come together for such a good cause. Montrealers certainly gave generously this holiday season.”
In addition to James Lyng High School and James Lyng Adult Centre in St. Henri, the other participating schools and centres were: Galileo Adult Centre in Montreal North; Rosemount High School and Vincent Massey Collegiate in Rosemount; St John Bosco in Ville Émard; St. Dorothy in St. Michel; Dalkeith in Anjou; Coronation in Côte des Neiges; Edward Murphy in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve; Parkdale and Gardenview in St. Laurent; St. Monica and Willingdon in N.D.G.; Dunrae Gardens and Carlyle in the Town of Mont-Royal; Edinburgh and Elizabeth Ballantyne in Montreal West; Sinclair Laird in Park Extension; East Hill and Michelangelo in Riviere-des-Prairies; Merton in Côte St. Luc; John Caboto Academy and Our Lady of Pompei in Ahuntsic; and Honoré Mercier, Pierre de Coubertin, General Vanier Elementary, John Paul I, and Dante Elementary in St. Léonard.
The donations were transported to the collection centre at James Lyng High School by the Canadian Armed forces, led by Master Corporal Marco Mastantuono and Master Corporal Steven Busby, and members of Canadian Grenadier Guards. Students from James Lyng, working with community organizer Allana Murphy, sorted through the items once they were delivered.
Many of the participating EMSB schools organized a series of events to encourage donations, and a number of schools were featured on CTV Montreal’s mid-day and nightly news programs throughout the duration of the campaign. “We are very grateful for the support from both the English Montreal School Board and the Canadian Armed Forces,” said Don Bastien, Senior Vice-President and General Manager of CTV Montreal. “Their generosity and commitment is commendable and, without their help, the Spirit of Giving campaign simply wouldn’t be possible.”
The campaign concluded with a live broadcast from the James Lyng community spaghetti dinner and musical performance on December 14. “I wish to thank everyone for their generous contribution to the EMSB’s largest collaborative holiday drive,” said EMSB Chairman Angela Mancini.
Other live broadcasts, which occurred at noon hour, were at Pierre de Coubertin, Merton, John Paul I, Vincent Massey Collegiate, Carlyle, Elizabeth Ballantyne and Edward Murphy.
The EMSB coordinators were Daniel Smajovits and Carol Maker, who worked directly with CTV’s Jason Devine and Jackie Easey.