MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIR & EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE WOODGREEN FOUNDATION
WoodGreen’s Donors are Truly Difference Makers
We are privileged to have this opportunity to express our gratitude to our donors, on behalf of the board and staff of The WoodGreen Foundation – and on behalf of the 40,000 individuals who rely on WoodGreen. Whether you are a new donor this year or a long-standing friend, WoodGreen’s vital work in the community is a reflection of your generosity. Thank you.
During the past year, as we rolled out the ‘quiet phase’ of The Difference Makers – our $20 million poverty reduction campaign – a host of individuals and organizations answered our call to ‘think differently and act collectively’ to build a more equitable and inclusive Toronto. Social services is an area that has traditionally flown under the radar of the philanthropic community. However, we have been thrilled to witness the commitment of so many Difference Makers who have been motivated to join with us to bring about real, sustainable change. Our campaign update on the next page offers you a snapshot of our donors’ vision and their generosity.
We have also been inspired this year by the group of outstanding young professionals who have come together to form our newly established Young Leaders Council. With an abundance of energy and a readiness to challenge the status quo, they are increasing awareness of, and support for, WoodGreen among their peers. At the same time, they are gaining knowledge and experience that will position them to be tomorrow’s leaders of social change. We applaud their commitment to truly making a difference and thank them for their partnership.
Over the past months, we’ve all seen how the coronavirus has upended lives in unprecedented ways. Since the individuals and families WoodGreen serves are already among Toronto’s most marginalized residents, for them, the impact of COVID-19 increased exponentially. The compassion of our donors has been instrumental in our ability to respond to this crisis.
Philanthropic support enabled us to answer calls for help in virtually every aspect of our clients’ lives — from providing masks for protection, through delivering groceries to isolated seniors to address food insecurity, to supplying devices to allow clients to receive services remotely and activity kits to address the effects of isolation on mental health. The overwhelming response to our urgent COVID-19 appeals made all this possible. We are immensely grateful.
COVID-19 has shown us how precarious life is, how close so many are to the poverty line, and the critical role of agencies such as WoodGreen, to keep people safe and supported in the community. The pandemic pulled back the curtain to reveal the frailty and hardships that lie just beneath the surface in our city. Now, as we transition into the ‘next normal’, we are moving forward with The Difference Makers campaign to assist the most vulnerable among us and reduce the profound inequities that exist in our city.
Thank you for your commitment, your compassion and your generosity – and thank you for walking alongside us as we move through this crisis to create new paths to opportunity.
With deep appreciation,