On Thursday I went into Longo’s with a clear vision of what I would be writing now. Planning to share a Day of Taste Ontario with you, I got my coffee sample from Raveesh, picked up a cream horn from the bakery (a delight I rarely allow myself) and headed into the Loft to use the WIFI to check my email over “breakfast”. As I sat down I saw two women in the kitchen of the Loft setting up for an event, so I poked my head in to ask what was going on. Their answer blew my carefully laid plan out of the water.
Rhonda, Chef-At-Large, and Maria, Bakery Cupcake Master (I made this title up), were setting up the Loft for a private party for ten 13-year old girls hosted by Sick Kids hospital. On the docket was a full pizza party lunch followed by a cupcake decorating class. A fun and creative event to celebrate the hand-off from outgoing SickKids Patient Ambassador and Children’s Miracle Network Champion Child Madi to incoming SickKids Patient Ambassador and Children’s Miracle Network Champion Child Ava. Also to give them some time surrounded by friends to get to know each other and even talk a bit about the role they play in spreading the word about SickKids.
The excitement and enthusiasm I heard from Rhonda, Maria, Katie when they were talking about this party was tangible and infectious. A real demonstration of the engagement with community and commitment to charity that I have seen at a corporate level of Longo’s through support of charities including Second Harvest.
As you know, I’m on the Steering Committee for Second Harvest’s Toronto Taste and this is how Longo’s came to be on my radar in the first place. Longo’s is a Toronto Taste Silver Sponsor and has been sponsoring since 2008. They provide funds to help underwrite some of the costs of running Taste, which means more of the ticket price goes to feed people. They donate gift cards as auction items and they promote the event. In addition to their support of Taste, they have also been donating their excess product to Second Harvest on a regular basis since 2008
Their involvement in helping feed the hungry in the GTA has always seemed understated to me. But I know they are there and I know they are helping so I asked my buddies at Second Harvest to tell me a bit about Longo’s involvement:
“Longo’s has been supporting Second Harvest since 2008 in two ways. One, as a sponsor of Toronto Taste, our largest fundraiser; and two, as a supporter of our food rescue program. Through the combination of their sponsorship dollars and donations of excess food from retail stores, Longo’s has provided thousands of meals to those in need in our city, and we are incredibly grateful for their support.” Jo-Anne Sobie, Executive Director, Second Harvest’
In fact, Longo’s supports a wide variety of community groups and charitable organisations including: Big Brothers and Sisters, Trillium Hospital, Joseph Brant, Princess Margaret, Free the Children, Juvenile Diabetes, ProAction and Breakfast for Learning and Sick Kids.
“We are proud to continue our partnership with SickKids that was established over 20 years ago,” says Rosanne Longo, Chair, Longo’s Family Charitable Foundation. “SickKids remains an integral recipient of our annual golf tournament, having an impact on our team members, our customers, our vendor-partners and our communities.” [Source]
It was really nice to happen upon this event and to see the support come full circle with Madi, Ava and their friends enjoying themselves in the Loft.
My plans? Well they’ll just have to turn into another visit, another week, for another post.
Read about my Foodie Adventure: Longo’s Taste Ontario Ambassador!
and my Disclosure statement