City-wide Trees for Tots raises over $52,000 for local kids

January 9, 2017

Chip in action

The Children’s Foundation of Guelph and Wellington’s 5th annual Trees for Tots raised a record-breaking $52,444 this Saturday, January 7. The increase in funds raised will help the Foundation address the gap between the thousands of children living in low-income situations that it is currently unable to support. All funds raised go directly into funding the Foundation’s four programs for local children: Food & Friends which provides access to healthy food, Free to Play which provides the opportunity to take part in sports and arts activities, the Scholarship Program which allows youth to continue their education and Adopt-A-Family which helps children in financial need experience a more joyful Christmas.

The great success of Trees for Tots is a reflection of the community-mindedness of the City. Guelph residents register with the Children’s Foundation to have their Christmas trees picked-up for a minimum $10 donation and volunteers help register, collect and chip the trees. “We are the administrators of the event,” said Children’s Foundation Events Manager Kasia Rusiniak, addressing the orientation of 170 volunteers, “you’re making it happen.”

As awareness of the event grows, popularity continues to increase and this year, 2,966 trees were tallied. The strong support of community volunteers and businesses makes this incredible feat possible. Several returning volunteers have made Trees for Tots an annual tradition of their own to close out the Christmas season including company volunteers from Wellington Brewery, Winmar and Contract Express. The new Wellington Basketball Club also brought out a strong crew of spirited Trees for Tots rookies. A hot lunch of award-winning soup was provided for all volunteers, courtesy of Zoup!

Collection routes were generated by the City of Guelph IT Department and the six chipping operations throughout the City were made possible by industry partners and equipment donors: Battlefield Equipment, Cooper Equipment Rentals, Davey Tree Service, Dozr, Hersey Bins, Jamie’s Lawncare, JL’s Tree Service, Premier Equipment, Sloot Construction Ltd., Sound Gardens and Universal Rental Services. All trees chipped are returned to nature through projects at Ignatius Jesuit Centre.