ANNUAL REVIEW ONTARIO 2013–2014
CANADIAN RED CROSS
TABLE OF CONTENTS 3–4
GREETINGS AND INTRODUCTIONS Message from the Chair & Director General
14–18 PHILANTHROPY 19
FACTS AT A GLANCE
MISSION The mission of the Canadian Red Cross is to improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity in Canada and around the world. VISION The Canadian Red Cross is the leading humanitarian organization through which people voluntarily demonstrate their caring for others in need. FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLES Humanity Impartiality Independence Neutrality Unity Universality Voluntary Service
MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIR AND DIRECTOR GENERAL DEAR CANADIAN RED CROSS FAMILY AND SUPPORTERS,
We are pleased to share with you our annual review – a look back on the events and achievements of the past year. Severe weather systems tested the capacity of our disaster management team on numerous occasions. From spring flooding in the southern and northern parts of the province, to the ice storm in December, our volunteers and staff routinely stepped up to the plate to ensure the Red Cross was there to help those most in need. This required great personal sacrifice in some situations, such as for those who managed warming shelters throughout the Christmas holidays instead of spending time with their friends and family. Their efforts were commendable and didn’t go unnoticed – a follow-up survey conducted after the response demonstrated overwhelmingly positive responses from the clients who had been helped. For our community health programs, one of the key highlights was preparing for the process of accreditation. It was an opportunity for us to assess what we were doing well and how we could improve the quality of our programs and services. We are very proud that we achieved accredited status from Accreditation Canada.
Throughout the accreditation journey, we saw first-hand the commitment of the staff and volunteers in our community health programs and are eager to see what the future will hold as those programs continue to grow to meet the needs of our aging population. From educating Ontarians on first aid and humanitarian issues, to helping newcomers to Canada and assisting seniors to transition from hospital back to their homes, the Red Cross is active in many ways right across the province. But our work wouldn’t be possible without the generosity of our donors and the commitment of thousands of volunteers. We are fortunate to have so many supporters who are eager to help us achieve our mission of helping those most vulnerable. These experiences and learnings in Ontario over the past year have played a key role in helping us to define our direction for the coming years. We hope you’ll continue to support the Red Cross as we work to make our communities safe and healthy places for everyone.
We are fortunate to have many supporters who are eager to help us achieve our mission.
Dennis Chow Chair, Ontario Council Ann Clancy Interim Director General, Ontario
CANADIAN RED CROSS
2012-2014 Chair................................................... Dennis Chow Vice Chair............................................ Ella West Past Chair........................................... Diane Girard Councillor at Large.............................. Lori Barnhart Councillor at Large.............................. Wayne Little Councillor at Large.............................. Trevor Lau Youth Councillor.................................. Chelsea Hargreaves Youth Councillor.................................. Naomi Diestelkamp Chair, West Region............................... Bruce Brogden Vice Chair, West Region....................... George Rudanycz Vice Chair, West Region....................... Robert Fontanini Acting Chair, East Region..................... Jamie Dzikowski Vice Chair, East Region........................ Beverly Verwey Chair, North Region............................. Harvey Wyers Vice Chair, North Region...................... Paula Eyler Vice Chair, North Region...................... Paul Hennessey Chair, Toronto Region........................... Amanda Kennedy Vice Chair, Toronto Region................... Aun Ali Khokhawala Vice Chair, Toronto Region................... Rupa Junnarkar Vice Chair, Toronto Region................... Rick Mackenzie Ontario Director General (Interim).......... Ann Clancy
Photo by: David Lister
Across Canada and around the world, the past year brought many significant weather-related disasters. Severe flooding and winter storms tested the readiness of Ontarians to deal with the unexpected. Many Ontarians will remember the floods of 2013 for years to come. In mid-April, significant rainfall combined with rapidly melting snow led to flooding in cottage country and parts of eastern Ontario. Over the course of three weeks, 10 communities declared a state of emergency as the flooding led to highway and local road closures, power outages and evacuations. Four reception centres opened throughout the hardest hit areas to offer assistance to residents. In addition to coordinating clean up efforts and distributing clean-up kits, the Red Cross also visited over 660 homes in the City of Kawartha Lakes and the Township of Ramara to offer assistance and conduct recovery assessments.
CANADIAN RED CROSS
Following the ice storm in December, the Red Cross distributed 3,000 blankets, 2,700 comfort kits with personal items, and served more than 20,000 meals.
Below: Red Cross volunteers and staff helped to manage 30 warming centres across southern Ontario following the ice storm in December.
As the warmer weather reached the northern parts of the province throughout May and June, they too experienced flooding. Nine communities along the James Bay coast and in northwestern Ontario made flood-related declarations, with six of those communities needing to evacuate residents. The Red Cross worked closely with the evacuated communities and the nine municipalities that offered to host the evacuees, providing registration and personal services to ensure the needs of the evacuees were met. By the time the residents were able to return to their home communities, 159 Red Cross volunteers had been engaged in the response, assisting 1,955 evacuees. Flooding didnâ€™t end with the spring season. In early July, unusually heavy rains during a summer storm led to serious flooding in Toronto and Mississauga. Sections of highways and rail lines were forced to close and an estimated 450,000 residents
were left without power. A GO train was evacuated and the Red Cross assisted stranded commuters. Two respite centres were opened and staffed by Red Cross personnel to provide water, information and relief from the heat and humidity for those without hydro. More than 200 wellness checks were conducted at two senior and social housing complexes to ensure vulnerable residents were safe and well. Significant flooding throughout the year tested the capacity of the Red Cross to respond, but the largest emergency of the year happened on December 22, when an intense winter storm covered southern Ontario in a thick blanket of ice, bringing down power lines and blocking roads with downed trees. More than 600,000 people lost power, half of them within the City of Toronto. As hydro professionals worked to restore power, the Canadian Red Cross moved quickly to offer assistance to those
affected. At the peak of the response, 30 warming centres and shelters were in operation in 15 communities providing blankets, comfort kits with personal items, meals and a warm, safe place to stay. In spite of the response taking place over the holiday season, when holiday parties and family gatherings were scheduled to happen, more than 380 Red Cross staff and volunteers participated in the response, giving more than 9,000 hours of their time to support the 4,600 clients who needed help. Efforts of Red Cross disaster management personnel were not limited to within Ontario. Catastrophic flooding in Alberta in June resulted in evacuation orders for 100,000 people. It would later be deemed the largest domestic disaster response in the history of the Canadian Red Cross. Personnel from across the country participated in the response, with 38 per cent of responders deploying from Ontario. In addition to being on the ground in Alberta, Ontario staff and volunteers also provided support to the National Disaster Coordination Team in Ottawa and helped to manage a call centre for registration and inquiries. And of course, no one will soon forget last November when Typhoon Haiyan brought widespread flooding, landslides and destruction to the Philippines, destroying thousands of homes and leaving an estimated four million people displaced.
The Red Cross provided assistance to hundreds of Ontarians following the ice storm in December. Many families, including their beloved pets, spent the holidays in warming centres.
A CHRISTMAS TO REMEMBER
Teri Truscott was one of the many Torontonians who had to leave her home during the ice storm in December. Her apartment building lost power and as the temperature dropped in her home, Teri became increasingly worried about where she was going to go to stay warm. Luckily, Teri was able to get to a warming centre and was greeted by friendly Red Cross faces. A cot, comfort kit with personal items and blanket were a welcoming sight to Teri who was able to stay comfortably for the next three nights up to and including Christmas Day. “It was the best Christmas I’ve ever had,” remarked Teri. “The volunteers worked tirelessly, especially when they were up all night on Christmas Eve getting presents ready for the young children.” Teri is now retired, but her career as a PSW helped her stay busy while at the shelter. She was always asking Red Cross volunteers what she could do to help. “It was the least I could do; they were so good to me.” Volunteers drove Teri back and forth from her apartment, near Victoria Park and the Danforth, so that she could attend to her cats who remained home. Not all her pets remained at home though. Teri’s beloved Shih Tzu, “Mr. Marty,” stayed with her at the shelter and volunteers took turns walking the dog. This was a huge relief to Teri who relies on a scooter to get around. “I was amazed and overjoyed at the services I received. The people were wonderful to me and it was a real joy to be there despite the circumstances.”
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than 10,300 Ontarians received personal preparedness training last year, which will make a big difference in ensuring they are ready to deal with future emergencies.
The Canadian Red Cross deployed its Emergency Response Unit to the Philippines following Typhoon Haiyan in November.
It was one of the strongest storms ever to make landfall. The devastation seen on television and read about in newspapers was unimaginable. Once the magnitude of the disaster was apparent, Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies from around the world stepped up to provide assistance. Within days, the Canadian Red Cross, with support from the Government of Canada, deployed its Emergency Response Unit mobile field hospital. It was staffed with delegates from across Canada, including several from Ontario. They provided critical life-saving health services in the community of Ormoc, one of the hardest-hit areas. When disasters strike abroad or there is conflict or other humanitarian crises, families can easily become separated. The Red Cross plays an important role in helping these families to re-establish contact through the Restoring Family Links program. Liaising with the
network of 189 Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies around the world, Red Cross officials worked with 488 individuals this past year. While large-scale responses are widely reported and remembered, the Red Cross also responds to personal disasters. Last year, our personal disaster assistance teams responded 725 times for families who had experienced house fires, evacuations and other unexpected emergencies. In many cases, the families affected required assistance finding emergency lodging, as well as clothing, food and personal items. When these emergencies happen, individuals and families who have prepared ahead of time fare much better than those who have not. The Red Cross plays an important role in educating Canadians about the importance of having an emergency preparedness kit and knowing what to do in the event of a disaster. More
One of the areas where the Red Cross can help to build capacity for emergency response and preparedness is in First Nation communities in Ontario. The Red Cross satellite office in Moose Cree First Nation, near James Bay, was established just over a year ago and has since hired a disaster management coordinator from the community. More than 10 volunteers are now trained and ready to respond to emergencies. Shelter supplies for 300 people, including cots, comfort kits with personal items and blankets, have been purchased and prepositioned in Moose Cree First Nation so they are available to support other communities along the James Bay coast. In addition, a public education campaign, called â€œBe Red Cross Readyâ€? was launched in the community featuring print and video components in both English and Cree that promote the importance of personal preparedness. n
HEALTH Canadian Red Cross staff and volunteers work together to deliver community programs designed to enhance the quality of life for Ontarioâ€™s most vulnerable populations. Nutritional support though Meals on Wheels, assistance with transportation, and mobility support through health equipment loans are just some of the many resources available to seniors, and those aging or recovering from illness or injury. The services provided by the Red Cross meet an important need in the community and allow people to remain living independently. Last fall, the Canadian Red Cross received accredited status from Accreditation Canada for all of its community support services programs across Ontario. This includes programs such as Meals on Wheels, transportation, home equipment loans, attendant outreach, and supportive housing. Accreditation is an inclusive process that organizations use to regularly and consistently examine and improve the quality of their services. All of the surveyors from Accreditation Canada were unanimous in expressing how well the Red Cross is engaged with its communities, aware of the needs of its communities and working hard to meet those needs with innovative programs.
CANADIAN RED CROSS
Last year, the Red Cross transportation program provided almost 350,000 rides to medical appointments, day programs, shopping and social events for people who are unable to use public transit due to disabilities. More than 10,300 pieces of health equipment were loaned by the Red Cross last year, including wheelchairs, walkers, toileting equipment and other assistive devices.
In 1963, one innovative program offered by the Canadian Red Cross was Meals on Wheels. The program was first established in Canada when Brantford resident Elsie Matthews approached the Red Cross with the idea to replicate a unique program she witnessed while travelling in England. The idea was to deliver meals to seniors in their homes. The Red Cross offered the use of the branchâ€™s kitchen and station wagon to establish the program in Brantford. In its inaugural year, meals were delivered to 12 clients per week at a cost of $0.50 each. Now, 50 years later, 85 volunteers provide over 14,000 hot and frozen meals per year to more than 250 clients in the Brantford area alone. Across Ontario, Red Cross Meals on Wheels volunteers delivered more than 253,000 meals over the past year.
In addition to offering Meals on Wheels, the Red Cross also runs a mobile food bank in Toronto, the only service of its kind in the area. Every two weeks, a food hamper is delivered to clients who are not able to access their local walk-in food banks due to mobility issues. This past year, more than 11,000 food hampers were delivered to 578 clients. In the future, demand for nutritional programs, such as Meals on Wheels and the Mobile Food Bank, is expected to increase as the population ages and the delivery of health care becomes more home and community-based. In many instances, access to nutritious and affordable meals is a key factor in enabling people to continue living independently in their homes. For some people, having access to transportation or health equipment can mean the difference between living
independently and living in a long-term care centre. Last year, the Red Cross transportation program provided almost 350,000 rides to medical appointments, day programs, shopping and social events for people who are unable to use public transit due to disabilities. For people who require the use of assistive devices for only a short period of time, the Health Equipment Loan Program (HELP) offered by the Canadian Red Cross alleviates the financial burden that often comes along with injury or illness by offering rental health equipment for only the time they will need it, avoiding an often costly purchase. The program not only helps to reduce the number of items sent to the landfill, but also provides affordable assistive devices to clients who need them. Last year, 10,316 piece of health equipment were loaned across Ontario,
including wheelchairs, walkers, commodes and bath benches. The Red Cross also offers programs for emotional wellbeing, which is often said to be just as important to a person’s overall health as their physical well-being. For the youth of today, one common threat to their emotional well-being is bullying. The violence and abuse prevention programs offered by the Canadian Red Cross are aimed at creating safe environments, free of violence – bullying, abuse, exploitation – through prevention, education and response. Trainers and educators work with schools, youth groups, parents, and those in the workplace to deliver the specialized programs. Tremendous growth in the program has taken place over the last year, resulting in the recruitment of additional trainers who are ready to make a positive impact in the lives of children and youth. One area where the program is poised to grow is in the Region of Peel, thanks to a partnership between the Red Cross and the Peel District School Board, one of the largest school boards in Canada. Beyond the Hurt will be implemented in all of the region’s schools. Trained youth facilitator teams will deliver workshops to their peers, and workshops for staff and parents will also be offered. The northern region of the province also experienced significant growth in Red Cross violence and abuse prevention programs, as
well as other innovative programs designed to increase community capacity with respect to health. In Fort Albany and Moose Factory, the Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) engaged the Canadian Red Cross to develop and deliver culturally appropriate training for Personal Support Workers (PSWs) who provide support to seniors in First Nation communities. The 27-week program involves a team approach and it is anticipated up to 22 students will graduate in 2014. It will be a meaningful solution to the ongoing challenge of not having enough PSWs to care for seniors in communities along the coasts of Hudson Bay and James Bay. Another initiative rolling onto the streets of northern Ontario is the Priority Assistance to Transition Home (PATH) program which has already helped more than 500 senior clients. A result of collaboration between the North East LHIN, regional hospitals, Community Care Access Centres, community support service agencies and the Canadian Red Cross, the goal of the PATH program is to provide support and care for seniors who otherwise have no way to safely make the transition home after receiving hospital care. A Red Cross volunteer drives the client and a transitional care worker home from hospital, making any needed stops along the way, such as the pharmacy and grocery store. Afterwards, the transitional care worker
First “Meals on Wheels” in Canada. Brantford, Ontario, November 14, 1963
The Canadian Red Cross is now the number one provider of first aid in Canada
CANADIAN RED CROSS
follows up with a phone call to check for any possible issues that may have arisen since the client’s return home. The program has been found to be significant in helping prevent patient readmissions to hospital shortly after discharge. First piloted by the Sudbury branch, the PATH program has since expanded to Sault Ste. Marie, North Bay,
and most recently Timmins. It’s an important program that offers both a practical and humanitarian value. Red Cross first aid training has also seen tremendous growth in northern Ontario this past year. A three-year agreement between the Seven Generations Education Institute (7Gens) and the Red Cross will see first aid and first
responder training provided to the Institute’s adult students in Fort Frances, Kenora and Hudson. In addition, eight people from Moose Cree First Nation were trained as first aid instructors last year through the Red Cross satellite office in Moose Cree First Nation. By having members from the community certified to teach first aid courses, it is no longer
THE HERO NEXT DOOR Despite 18 years on the job as a Constable with Toronto Police Services, Peter Morris had never needed to use his CPR training. That all changed on a warm spring day in 2012 as he arrived home from work to hear his neighbour, Kristin, screaming from her backyard. Peter ran toward her and found her performing CPR on her oneyear-old son Jesse. He took the near-lifeless baby from her arms and continued CPR until paramedics arrived.
Peter Morris saved the life of his neighbour’s one-year-old son, Jesse.
In 2013, Peter was honoured for his actions with a Rescuer Award from the Canadian Red Cross. The Rescuer Award recognizes the efforts of good Samaritans by acknowledging non-professional rescuers or off-duty first responders who have volunteered to save a life, prevented further injury and/or provided comfort to the injured; or are children who were not trained but provided help. Without a doubt, Jesse survived because of the quick actions taken by Peter and Kristin. Baby Jesse’s struggle to recover
has been a long one, but his mother says he is stronger every day. It is true that Peter is a police officer by day, and we expect emergency officials to be trained in life-saving skills. However, Peter said that while he was performing CPR on Jesse he was thinking that he never imagined he would ever actually have to use his CPR skills. Polling conducted by the Red Cross indicates that the majority of people who perform CPR will do so on a friend or family member. Updating your first aid/CPR training regularly helps build confidence so that if it is ever needed, you’ll know what to do. Although Peter hadn’t performed CPR before, his skills were sharp because he updates his training annually. Jesse’s mom Kristin summed up what many were thinking when Peter received his award. “I can’t thank you enough from the bottom of my heart,” she said. “You will always be our hero.”
necessary to have instructors come from long distances by train or air. By the end of March 2014, first aid courses were being offered locally in Moose Factory, Moosonee and Fort Albany, and 38 people had successfully completed the training. First aid training in First Nation communities is of particular importance, since research has shown that they are more vulnerable to injury, natural disasters, family violence and suicide. Keeping all Canadians healthy by preventing injuries before they happen has been a priority for the Canadian Red Cross for more than 50 years. Recently, the Red Cross became the number one provider of first aid training in Canada. Water safety is also championed by the Red Cross, helping people of all ages and abilities to gain the knowledge and skills they need to ensure their safety in, on and around the water. Last year in Ontario, more than 255,000 people were trained in how to provide first aid and CPR and almost 377,000 people participated in Red Cross swimming and water safety programs. n
Rose Ma’s family donated her assistive devices to the Red Cross.
WHEELCHAIR RECYCLING PROGRAM RECEIVES AWARD
In November 2013 representatives from the Canadian Red Cross helped celebrate in Toronto as an award was presented for the Wheelchair Recycling Program - a joint initiative with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care’s Assistive Devices Program (ADP) and the Canadian Red Cross. The ACE Award (Achievement, Commitment, and Excellence) is a Ministry-designated award that recognizes and celebrates innovation and excellence. In 2012 and 2013, the ADP concluded a two-year pilot project to recycle manual wheelchairs in partnership with the Red Cross. The goal was to refurbish and recycle wheelchairs that were no longer needed so that others could reuse them. As a result of this partnership, more than 1,270 wheelchairs have been donated in Ontario to date. Almost 20 per cent of those donations were refurbished and made available for others; the remaining chairs were either used for parts or responsibly recycled. The success of the pilot project led to the program being offered on a permanent basis. When Suzanne Peet’s mother, Rose Ma, passed away in 2011, the family was left with an array of health care equipment including three wheelchairs, a wheeled walker, a bath bench, commode and shower chair. As busy professionals, Suzanne and her siblings had pondered for some time what to do with these devices. “None of us had the time to try to sell these privately, and the thought of throwing these things in the garbage just seemed like such a waste,” said Suzanne. “I contacted the Red Cross to see if they had any ideas on what we could do and that is when I learned about the program. I know my mother would have been happy that these devices were passed on to other people who will benefit from them the way she did.”
CANADIAN RED CROSS
Tiffany Circle Honourary Chair, Mrs. Laureen Harper, addresses members of the Tiffany Circle at an event held at her home in 2013.
The generosity of Canadians is what allows the Red Cross to provide help to those in need. Accountability is a priority and the Red Cross is committed to ensuring all funds are used for their intended purpose. In 2013, MoneySense magazine conducted their fourth annual study of 100 of Canada’s largest charitable organizations. Charity efficiency, fundraising efficiency, governance and transparency, and reserve fund size were ranked and, once again, the Canadian Red Cross received an “A+” in each category.
The Red Cross has provided help to nearly 70,000 individuals affected by the flooding in Alberta thanks to the generosity of Canadians.
During times of emergency and disaster, Canadians often turn to the Canadian Red Cross to offer financial support for both relief and recovery for those affected. Such was the case in June 2013, when catastrophic flooding disrupted the lives of many Albertans. In the days and weeks that followed, the needs of those affected were met head-on with an outpouring of donations from Canadians. More than $42 million was raised, enabling the Red Cross to provide food, clothing, medical equipment and supplies, occupational support, transportation services, rent/ mortgage payments, utilities and household goods. When Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines in November, 2013, support from the global community was immediate. The Canadian Red Cross launched an appeal for funds and Canadians were quick to respond, donating almost $43 million â€“ of which nearly $17 million came from Ontario. Recovering from this devastating event will be a slow process, but thanks to the generosity of donors, the
Red Cross will be there to support those affected by Haiyan each step of the way. In addition to fundraising for disaster relief, the Canadian Red Cross also relies on the support of donors to provide many of its programs and services. This support comes from individual donors, corporate partners, legacy gifts and groups who work to fundraise on behalf of the Red Cross. Walmart Canada has been a long-time supporter of the Red Cross, holding an annual campaign to raise funds for Red Cross disaster preparedness and response activities. Each year, stores across the country host fundraising activities to raise awareness of and boost donations to the disaster management program. The 2013 month-long campaign saw 147 Walmart stores across Ontario raise $983,000, which will go a long way towards helping Canadian families who experience house fires, flooding and other emergencies.
A special group of Red Cross supporters is the Tiffany Circle, a group of likeminded women leaders and philanthropists who have each committed to investing a minimum of $10,000 annually in the Red Cross. This highly engaged group of donors are mobilizing support around several key issues, including the work of the Red Cross in First Nation communities and the international projects related to maternal, child and newborn health. To date, Tiffany Circle members have pledged more than $4 million in Canada. One initiative that the Tiffany Circle has participated in has been raising awareness for the Imagine No Bullying campaign in Ontario. This campaign is a $1 million initiative to create safe environments free of violence for children and youth through prevention, education and response. Last year, more than 1,000 youth facilitators and prevention educators were trained through Beyond the Hurt, an anti-bullying program offered by the Red Cross. In turn, more than 134,765 participants took part in the
CANADIAN RED CROSS
The Red Cross satellite office in Moose Cree First Nation is helping to build community capacity in disaster response, first aid and violence and abuse prevention.
program. Beyond the Hurt is currently active in only 40 per cent of school boards in Ontario. Money raised through the Imagine No Bullying campaign will allow the Red Cross reach more students, helping to address the growing problem of bullying. To date, $200,000 has been raised in support of this campaign. Progress has also been made on fundraising for the Strength & Spirit campaign in Ontario. Launched in 2012, the Strength & Spirit campaign has now raised nearly two-thirds of its $1.5 million goal. The purpose of the Strength & Spirit
campaign is to build resiliency and capacity in First Nation communities. Studies have shown that these communities are more vulnerable to injury, natural disasters, family violence and suicide than the rest of the Canadian population. To help address these issues, the Red Cross has established a satellite office in Moose Cree First Nation, the first of its kind in Ontario, and made possible through the funds raised by this campaign. A second satellite office in an Ontario First Nation community is scheduled to open in 2014. n
The purpose of the Strength & Spirit campaign is to build resiliency and capacity in First Nation communities.
A LIFETIME OF
Kroum and Eva Pindoff, founders of Music World Limited, immigrated to Canada in 1955, and settled in Toronto in a small, rented room in a house shared with relatives. Working at a nearby meatpacking plant, the couple would hand their daughter, Sophia, off to one another outside of the factory as they passed to work their opposite shifts. Within a few years, Kroum began selling records on consignment to convenience stores and pharmacies across the city. He soon found his business growing and expanded his territory across the province, establishing Pindoff Record Sales in 1960. Eight years later, the first Music World store opened its doors in Toronto. The rest, as they say, is history. Throughout the course of their lives, Kroum and Eva never forgot where they came from or the hardships they had both experienced and borne witness to within their lifetime. Both survivors of war, the Pindoffs felt compelled to help vulnerable people across the globe, whether it be due to conflict, disaster or simple need. Their relationship with the Red Cross began more than 20 years ago. Beginning their charitable giving by supporting
those who were affected by war in the former Yugoslavia, the couple has since donated more than $20 million supporting a multitude of projects assisting victims of landmines, those suffering due to droughts in Africa and other initiatives throughout the Americas and Asia. Last spring, Eva Pindoff made a generous donation of $1 million to the Red Cross in honour of her beloved Kroum, who died in January of 2013. To honour Kroumâ€™s philanthropic spirit, the Red Cross launched The Kroum Pindoff Award. The award will be given on an annual basis to a Canadian Red Cross international delegate who has, in the course of her or his Red Cross work overseas, contributed to translating the generosity of Canadians into effective and tangible humanitarian action in support of the needs of vulnerable people and communities. The first recipient of the Kroum Pindoff Award was Elaine Hernandez. Elaine is recognized for her recent work with the Red Cross where she coordinated Canadian Red Cross support to the Honduran Red Cross and Ministry of Health to deliver maternal, newborn and child health programming to 229 vulnerable and isolated communities in rural Honduras.
The Pindoffs have been passionate supporters of the Canadian Red Cross for more than 20 years, donating a total of more than $20 million for various projects around the world.
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Don Elliott never forgot the comfort and assistance he received from the Canadian Red Cross during World War II.
LEAVING A LASTING LEGACY Ask someone to describe what hope looks like and their answer may surprise you. For Donald Allan Elliott, in 1941, hope looked an awful lot like 16 ounces of milk powder, some butter, cheese, corned beef, sardines, dried apples, prunes, sugar, jam, a couple of biscuits, some chocolate, salt and pepper, tea and a bar of soap. That and just a few other items made up the parcels that the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies distributed to prisoners of war during World War II. Don was a 21-year-old bank teller from Saskatchewan when he joined the war effort in the spring of 1940. Within a year, he was in England, trained and ready to navigate Wellington bombers. On July 8, 1941, Don’s plane was hit by a German shell. The crew was ordered to bail out. All six members landed safely in a farmer’s field. Unfortunately, that field was right next to a German-occupied field. “For you, the war is over,” Don was told by the German soldier who captured him. He spent the next two years moving from prison camp to prison camp – six in total. In April of 1943, Don was moved to his final camp, the East Compound of Stalag Luft III, at Sagan in Southern Germany. Rooms were equipped with four double bunks, a table, wooden benches and a coal stove, and each prisoner was given a woolen Red Cross blanket. “My blanket was so necessary to my comfort that it was the only thing I brought home with me. I made sure that my three children slept under it – for good luck – and I still have it.” Don wrote to the Canadian Red Cross in the last year of his life, with thanks for saving his life. With his recent passing, at 96 years of age in 2013, Don left a bequest to the Red Cross. Its purpose: to allow the Red Cross to continue to offer hope to others, the way it had offered hope to him, during times of crisis.
Engaging members of the community is an important part of the work of the Red Cross.
FACTS AT A GLANCE
Last year, this is how the Red Cross made a difference in Ontario:
people assisted by Red Cross disaster management
participants in Red Cross swimming and water safety programs
active disaster management volunteers in Ontario
people trained through 419 disaster preparedness workshops
pieces of health equipment loaned
received 225,444 people Red Cross first aid training
food hampers were delivered to 578 clients of the Mobile Food Bank in Toronto
refugee claimants received assistance through the First Contact program
Ontario youth reached through violence and abuse prevention
Ontarians educated on international humanitarian issues
meals delivered by Red Cross volunteers through Meals on Wheels
transportation rides provided to clients
people were helped to locate or restore contact with family members through the Restoring Family Links program
Red Cross volunteers in Ontario
5700 Cancross Court Mississauga, ON L5R 3E9 Phone: 905-890-1000 Fax: 905-890-1008
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Published on May 30, 2014