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Holly jolly Christmas donation
Royal Bank donates $32,000 to SideDoor

Kevin Allerston
Northern News Services
Published Thursday, December 15, 2011

The sounds of children singing filled the the SideDoor Youth Centre Thursday evening as the centre held its annual Christmas concert and received a $32,000 donation from the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) to the centre's Junior SideDoor Program.

NNSL photo/graphic

Fraser Goulet leads children at the SideDoor Youth Centre in a spirited rendition of Hark! The Herald Angels Sing at the SideDoor Youth Centre Thurs. Dec, 8 during the centre's annual Christmas concert. - Kevin Allerston/NNSL photo

Ron Sauve, regional vice president North of 60, was at the concert to deliver an over-sized cheque to the youth group.

“It was just exciting to be part of that. You can definitely see there's needs, you can definitely see there's all kinds of costs,” said Sauve. “We gave them $32,000 and that's just a small drop in the bucket when you consider their operating expenses."

It costs the SideDoor $1 million a year to operate its seven programs, which include the Junior SideDoor program.

RBC and the SideDoor have been partners since 1999, and over that time RBC has donated approximately $250,000 to the centre. The SideDoor Youth program costs approximately $46,000 a year to run.

After the official presentation Sauve and SideDoor executive director Garry Hubert let the kids hold up the novelty cheque as they continued singing Christmas songs.

Sauve said he hopes their donation will help inspire others to see what ways they can help support groups like SideDoor.

“Because $32,000 is a big chunk of money, but it doesn't go a long way, that's for sure,” said Sauve.

Nine-year-old Kendall Collins was at SideDoor for the Christmas concert.

“Thank you very much for letting me go to the centre,” said Kendall, when asked how she feels about the donation.

She said she was shy, but had a great time singing, especially Silent Night.

Hubert said the money is well appreciated, with the money going to pay for programming and wages.

“We have roughly 30 youth who come to the centre on a daily basis and use the service,” said Hubert. “And so that's just going to help offset some of the staffing, materials and food that's supplied through the program,” he said.

As for the caroling, he said it's great to see the kids having a good time.

“It's amazing to see how the kids are pouring out their hearts and singing the Christmas carols and it's just a special feeling for us, the board and the staff to see the smiling faces for providing a great service to the community,” said Hubert.

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