June 2021 \ News \ Cover Story
‘Oxygen for India’ marathon fundraiser

The Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce ...

The Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce (ICCC), along with 80-odd community bodies, launched its ‘Oxygen for India marathon fundraiser to collect $2 million to send oxygen equipment to India, even as Ontario announced to send 2,000 more ventilators to the Covid-battered country. Almost $500,000 was raised during the very first session of the marathon fundraiser on May 16. It will be held for three hours every subsequent Sunday for four weeks. Surprisingly, the biggest contribution of $50,000 came from Canada’s native or indigenous Metis people.

“We have similarities with Indians even though we are from different parts of the world. India will be there for us when we need, and we should be there for them now. We will donate $50,000 to the ICCC and do more if needed,” announced David Chartrand, President of the Manitoba Metis Federation.

ICCC president Vijay Thomas said their initiative aims at garnering donations not only from the 1.6 million Indo-Canadian community, but also businesses and cities across Canada. “The money will be used to send oxygen concentrators and generators and we will find new pathways to send oxygen to India. We want to ensure that oxygen reaches tier 2 and 3 cities and towns before they get severely hit by the virus,” Thomas said. Top political leaders, including the Ontario Premier Doug Ford, Mayors, business owners and medical professionals took part in the marathon fundraiser. Ford announced that 2,000 additional ventilators are being sent to India, in addition to 3,000 already delivered.

Tags: Canada, Oxygen