COVID-19 has caused many of us to get creative in how we give back to our communities. 

While in-person volunteer opportunities have been limited, that hasn’t stopped Suncor’s Montreal refinery employees from giving back. 

To support overwhelmed food banks, the Montreal SunCares Community Giving Network (SCGN) encouraged Montreal employees to give directly via SunCares to two key foodbanks: Action Secours Vie d’espoir and Cuisine collective à toute vapeur. Employees took it one step further and developed a recipe book that they sold online, with the funds they raised donated to further support the foodbanks in need. Through funds from Suncor and the Suncor Energy Foundation, SunCares matches donations made by employees up to $2,000 per employee, per year. 

 “Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, I can tell you that at Suncor Montreal we are continuously asking ourselves how we can help those in need in our community,” says Dean Dussault, senior advisor of communications and stakeholder relations. “Montreal and the East Montreal area where we operate, were one of the province’s COVID-19 red zones and these conditions have added more stress to many community members.” 

Unfortunately, one of the terrible impacts of the COVID-19 lockdown and this stress has been an increasing number of domestic violence cases. A local women and children shelter in east Montreal could not respond to the demand in providing proper assistance. Knowing this situation, the Montreal SCGN, worked with the Suncor Energy Foundation to make a special donation of $20,000 to Maison Dalauze, the main local organization providing important services and support to victims of domestic violence for the communities of Pointe-aux-Trembles and Montreal-East.  

Here again, the Montreal employees then encouraged employees to do more. They participated in a LIFT Challenge, which consists of collecting points by doing physical activity. This virtual event brought people together online, participating in physical activities together and brought in donations that were given to the shelters in need.