As a father and girls hockey coach, a Newmarket Desjardins Insurance agent was inspired to give back to Girls Inc. of York Region to help girls reach their full capacity in life.
George Rappos presented the $4,000 grant to Girls Inc. executive director Barb Wallace on Dec. 12 at Meadowbrook Public School in Newmarket.
"We are proud to be supporting a worthy organization such as Girls Inc. that strives to empower girls and young women — especially those who are disadvantaged and marginalized — to be healthy, strong, assertive and confident members of our society," Rappos said.
The grant, which is provided through Desjardins' GoodSpark community grants program, will go toward programs designed to enhance the confidence and self-esteem of girls and young women, while giving them the skills and tools needed to be empowered, productive and contributing members of society.
"I have a 14-year-old daughter and I am involved in coaching amateur girls hockey players, so I see first-hand some of the challenges they experience with their self-awareness," Rappos added. "Hopefully this modest grant will help facilitate the great work done by Girls Inc. to support girls and young women. We want to help bring a positive impact to their lives."
For the second year, Desjardins Insurance is providing $271,000 in grants, which range from $2,000 and $5,500 each, to 76 community organizations in Alberta, Ontario and New Brunswick through the GoodSpark program.
Agents are invited to nominate organizations that are important to them and their communities, and are required to contribute toward the grant. Desjardins agents donated more than $73,000 of the $271,300 total.
In 2018, a total of $190,000 was given to community initiatives in the three provinces where Desjardins Insurance agent offices are located.