Eager to compare and share her success with her friends, Akshara excitedly arrived early to submit all the donations she had diligently collected over the past month. Along with her peers, Akshara supported her friends and family with encouragement and reminders to raise money and awareness about the community involvement of BAPS Charities.
Akshara is just one of hundreds of community members who supported the 20th annual BAPS Charities Walk Green 2017 in Toronto on Sunday August 13, 2017.
This is an event to bring awareness and raise funds for Environmental and Health Initiatives and other charitable activities organized by BAPS Charities. This year, the BAPS Charities Walk supports Tree Canada’s national initiative to plant 10,000 trees in Canada. In addition, the Walk also supports the life-saving work of the William Osler Health System.
Tree Canada is a not-for-profit charitable organization established to encourage Canadians to plant and care for trees in urban and rural environments. Since 1992, more than 80 million trees have been planted, over 580 schoolyards have been greened, and Tree Canada has helped organize twelve national urban forest conferences. The trees planted are a living legacy that benefits communities for decades to come.
William Osler Health System, one of the largest community health care systems in the country, serves a diverse and growing population of 1.3 million people, and is comprised of three integrated hospitals; Brampton Civic Hospital, Etobicoke General Hospital and the newly opened Peel Memorial Centre for Integrated Health and Wellness. Together the three hospitals deliver high-quality, forward-thinking health care that respects the traditions and culture of all patients and families they serve.
Special guests at the event included:
- Kirsty Duncan, MP (Etobicoke North), Minister of Science
- Councillor Vincent Crisanti, Ward 1 – Etobicoke North, Deputy Mayor
- Ken Mayhew, President & CEO, William Osler Health System Foundation
Hon. Kirsty Duncan recognized BAPS Charities by saying, “I want to thank you for being a touchstone in our community. I want to say thank you for walking this morning for William Osler. Thank you for all you do for our community and our country. Thank you for planting 10,000 trees…”
Councillor Vincent Crisanti said, “This is the 20th year of the BAPS Charities Walk. You are always supporting major charities and giving back to the community. This is why I am so proud and happy to be here today. I thank all of you for participating in this amazing event. I want to thank all the volunteers. Its phenomenal what you do.”
Councillor Crisanti also presented a scroll on behalf of the city congratulating BAPS Charities on the 20th annual BAPS Charities Walk.
Ken Mayhew, President & CEO, William Osler Health System Foundation said,
“We are so honoured and so humbled, as William Osler Health System, to be part of this activity. BAPS Charities for the past 20 years has supported many important charitable causes. I want to thank you so much for what you have done for us. We are so grateful for your support.”
Through the efforts of BAPS Charities’ volunteer base, who come together to participate in service projects throughout the year, Akshara’s hard work not only inspires her friends but encourages participants of all ages to get involved in BAPS Charities initiatives.
“Participating in the BAPS Charities Walkathon is a tradition for my family. Every year we come together and use the opportunity to teach our children about the various causes that BAPS Charities supports,” said Akshara’s father, Rakesh Brahmbhatt.
The BAPS Charities Walk was held in 7 locations across Canada including: Toronto, Scarborough, Calgary, Winnipeg, Edmonton, Brandon and Saskatoon. This annual Walkathon, held at over 60 locations across North America, brings together over 17,000 participants in support of national and local causes. Other BAPS Charities centres across North America are supporting the Nature Conservancy’s efforts on protecting habitats and preserving biodiversity across the world. Its current campaign aims to plant one billion trees by 2025 to which BAPS Charities contributed $100,000 to plant 70,000 trees in 2016. In addition to targeted conservation efforts, the Nature Conservancy also invests in research related to conservation and climate change to drive international efforts.
BAPS Charities uses these opportunities to instill a spirit of service and commitment to preservation and environmental responsibility in all community members. Through participation in events and fundraising activities like the walkathon, participants are actively engaged in conversations and actions around sustainability and conservation, becoming owners rather than bystanders.