The event will take participants on an exciting outdoor adventure and help fund services such as youth scholarships, aftercare services, and more.
Over the past two years, Ontarians have experienced everything from lockdowns, stay-at-home orders, temporary business closures and isolation orders, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the restrictions that were imposed there.
Given the considerable amount of time Ontarians have spent collectively cooped up at home, outdoor activities have been a way to get out of the house and help improve mental and physical health, as recommended by a doctor in this CTV News Article.
Portage Ontario, a treatment center for Ontario youth, provides the opportunity for both adventure and outdoor fun for a worthy cause, in the form of a fundraising event called The great portage.
Le Grand Portage is an event taking place in July and August, and the event will give interested participants the opportunity to go on a canoe or kayak adventure and explore the beautiful backcountry of the province of Ontario.
The event, according to the webpage, will also give attendees the opportunity to “raise funds and challenge themselves in the backcountry to help raise awareness and support young people suffering from mental health and substance addictions.” “, which is a rather appropriate goal, given the industry in which Portage Ontario specializes.
“Carrying is a Canadian non-profit organization that was established in 1970. The organization helps people with substance abuse issues overcome their addictions and live healthy, happy and productive lives,” as mentioned by Ashley -Ann Maginnis, Associate Director of Development for Portage Ontario.
Portage Ontario— which is a Portage center based in Elora, Ontario — is the first-ever residential treatment facility for adolescents in Canada, in which it specifically supports young people between the ages of 14 and 18.
Although Portage Ontario is based in Elora, the organization prides itself on being a free treatment center that is available to help youth across Ontario who are struggling with substance abuse issues.
Among the many helpful programs and services that Portage Ontario offers youth staying at the facility are the Teen program (comprehensive care program for adolescents struggling with substance abuse and addiction problems), Portage Academy (on-site schooling), Cultural and recreational activities (offering team sports, art, music, community events, etc.), Follow-up and ongoing care (ongoing support for at least two years after addiction treatment), and much more.
Ashley-Ann says that while the Ontario government provides significant funding to the nonprofit, there are also crucial programs and services not covered by the government, which prompted the center youth treatment center to use fundraising as a method to be able to continue to deliver their robust program to the youth it serves.
“The comprehensive program we are offering here is a very expensive program for us to cover. Although we receive funding from the Ontario Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services“, said Ashley-Ann.
“But, we are doing this additional fundraising to help pay for some things that the government does not cover, such as our aftercare, the scholarships we provide to our youth, as well as outings that develop leadership, among others. The average cost for each young person who participates in our program is approximately $50,000. And so every dollar really helps.
Since this will be the first year that the Le Grand Portage event will take place, Ashley-Ann says there will be special rewards for participants and donors.
“We have planned a family scavenger hunt, where families will get a scavenger list and they can go explore provincial parks and make great memories together,” Ashley-Ann said.
“We also have some great sponsors on board, and they’re going to be donating some really cool giveaway items that individuals can win if they’re a top fundraiser, just completing challenges or just wanting to win. they also win challenges. Prizes will be geared towards hiking, camping, and just about anything outdoors. I’m really excited about this!
And while this is the exciting inaugural year for The Great Portage fundraiser, it is far from the first fundraiser hosted and managed by Portage Ontario.
“We started fundraising for a golf tournament called Freedom From Addiction Golf Classic last year,” Ashley-Ann said. “Additionally, over the past five years we have hosted a very successful cycling event called Pedal For Portage.”
“We are really proud of our fundraising events because not only do they give us the opportunity to bring the community together for fun and social events, but the money we raise through these events goes to a great cause by supporting Portage Ontario and helping the young people we support on a daily basis.
Ashley-Ann also says Portage Ontario greatly appreciates such a supportive community that has helped both the treatment center and the youth the center helps, at past and present fundraising events. And she says she’s looking forward to helping organize even more events for the community in the future.
“The amount of support and love that people have shown towards the young people we have is absolutely incredible. It fills my heart to know that we live in a community here and that there are communities all over the province that want to help our young people succeed, and that is absolutely fantastic to see.
If you would like to know more about Le Grand Portage fundraising, or if you would like to participate or donate to the cause, you can visit the fundraising page here.
And for more information about Portage Ontario and the services they offer to help Ontario youth struggling with substance abuse issues, you can visit their website.