Mentor Works Gives Back: Reflecting on Our 2015 Philanthropic Support

Giving back to the community

There are several reasons why people donate and volunteer their time to charities. The opportunities can have physical and social benefits, tax benefits, fulfil the desire to be part of something bigger than oneself, or bring a desired impact or result. From my participation at events such as Relay for Life and Big Bike for Heart and Stroke, I’ve been able to experience these benefits first-hand. Not only did I have fun, but I met new people and showed support to family members who had to face health challenges. What was the outcome of this time and financial investment? I genuinely felt good for having taken the time to show I truly cared for people in need.

How to Increase Your Charitable Commitment without Financial Donations

In a perfect world, I would love to increase my financial commitment to charities, both in terms of donation value and number of organizations supported. Although this isn’t always possible for people, we must remember that every little bit counts! The cumulative impact that all of us can have when we work together is unimaginable, and could forever change the world we live in.

Volunteering your time can be just as impactful as monetary donations. One way of volunteering your time is to contact one of many Food Banks across Canada. Food bank volunteers are needed year-round, but are especially needed during holidays to provide services such as:

  • Welcoming & interviewing guests;
  • Preparing food orders;
  • Unloading deliveries;
  • Sorting, packaging and stocking shelves;
  • Baking, serving food; and
  • Serving on the Board of Directors or other Board committees.

Mentor Works’ Team Charitable Support in 2015

The Mentor Works’ team is committed to giving back through several charitable causes. In 2015 we recognized and supported a variety of initiatives, raising thousands of dollars in the process.  Here are a few of the highlights from our past year:


Week 4 AllThe Movember Foundation is a charity committed to the advocacy of men’s health. Their approach includes funding programs focusing on prostate cancer, testicular cancer, poor mental health and physical inactivity. This year, several members of the Mentor Works team participated in Movember’s annual moustache growing fundraiser. Our Mo-entor Works team raised nearly $500 for the cause in our first year of the challenge, and are proud to support men’s health!

“Movember provides a fun, competitive way to support a worthwhile cause. It’s even more fun to join and fundraise as a team, because you’re constantly supported and contribute towards a common goal.”
– Jeff Shepherd, Marketing Analyst at Mentor Works


Adopt-a-FamilyThe Adopt-A-Family program matches individual donors and donor groups to families in need of support during the holidays.  Each donor is provided with a family wish list, which serves as a guide to purchase necessities for the family. These items can range from diapers, to small children’s toys, to grocery store gift cards. This year, Mentor Works continued our tradition of sponsoring a family, and encouraged our team members to contribute one of the list’s items.

Coldest Night of the Yearcoldest-night

Another employee-led initiative gaining support in our office is the Coldest Night of the Year; a 2km, 5km and 10km walk that provides participants the opportunity to experience some of the challenges faced by those who are currently homeless.

“I walked 10 kilometres in the biggest boots you can think of, it was pretty painful by the end because the boots were so heavy and my feet were nearly frozen.”
– Matthew Rodgers, Business Funding Analyst at Mentor Works

Nepal Earthquake Relief Fund

Mentor Works wanted to help after April 2015’s devastating earthquake in Nepal.  Matthew Rodgers committed to receiving a new ‘hipster’ haircut in exchange for our team’s donations towards earthquake relief funding.

“We raised $360 for people in terrible distress, and all just because my flow had no ‘game’. That’s awesome!”
– Matthew Rodgers, Business Funding Analyst at Mentor Works

Former Prime Minister of Canada, Steven Harper, also committed to matching donations made through the Canadian Red Cross. When this government matching is added, Mentor Works’ total impact came to $720 of aid for the Nepalese victims.

Santa Pur-suitSanta-pursuit

The Santa Pur-suit is a race offering 1km, 3km, and 5km routes. Participants dress like Santa, then embark on their run throughout Waterloo Region in support of the area’s YMCA programs.  For the last couple years, a few of Mentor Works’ team members have participated in this event.


Remember-RunHundreds of runners participate in an early-November race, REMEMBERrun, which supports The Preston Legion Poppy Fund (Legion Branch 126). Waterloo Region residents can support this event, which directly benefits Canadian veterans and a number of support programs administered by Legions across the country. Mentor Works’ President and Founder, Bernadeen McLeod, contributes by fundraising and participating in the run every year.


We are always looking for new, fun and rewarding chances to make a difference!

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