May is Jumpstart Month for Canadian Tire.
The Canadian Tire Jumpstart program is a charity dedicated to helping financially underprivileged children participate in all kinds of sports. The program encompasses just about any sport out there – from hockey and football, to squash and yoga. Whether it’s a team sport, or an individual endeavour – the sole purpose of the program is to give children the opportunity to participate.
According to the Canadian Tire website, the program has helped over 540,000 children across 332 different chapters since their launch in 2005.
Courtenay Canadian Tire store dealer Bert Heeringa said the key to the program is its anonimity, emphasizing the importance of making sure Jumpstart-funded kids aren’t identified.
“The whole idea is that these kids don’t get singled out. We don’t want them to be identified as needy kids. We just want them to have fun,” Heeringa says.
Heeringa participates in a Canadian Tire Corporate bike ride annually to raise money for the cause. This July, the ride will take place in Ontario and Quebec.
“We’re going to ride from Ottawa to Quebec City- a 500-kilometre bike ride,” Heeringa says.
Heeringa raises roughly $6,000 for the Comox Valley each year he participates in the ride.
The Jumpstart money that’s raised within the Comox Valley stays in the Valley to help children locally. Last year, approximately $30,000 was raised, helping 300 kids.
“You’re investing in people. There’s no better investment.”
The Comox Recreation Centre holds an annual spinathon, with last year’s bringing in $16,000 in a single day.
Donations are welcomed at Canadian Tire stores year-round, with people often bringing in loose change or converting their Canadian Tire money. Customers are also able to purchase a ball from the Jumpstart Red Ball campaign, which started in 2007. Each year, a different ball is added to the collection.
Mark’s Work Warehouse and Sport Chek, both owned by Canadian Tire Corporate Ltd., are participants in raising money for Jumpstart as well.
All customer donations go directly to the children in need.
The Canadian Tire Corporation Ltd. has been named one of ‘Canada’s Best Managed Companies’ for 2013.
For more information on the Jumpstart program, visit www.jumpstart.canadiantire.ca