BMO Honours Service Members Throughout Canada with Three Donations
BMO today announced three donations to organizations in Canada dedicated to the physical, mental and financial well being of Veterans, and that recognize the service and sacrifice of Indigenous Veterans.
“In recognition of Indigenous Veterans’ day earlier this week and with the approach of Remembrance Day in Canada, we are reminded of the countless men and women who have given selflessly through their service to their country,” said John McNain, Head, Personal Banking Products and Experience, North American Personal & Business Banking, BMO Bank of Montreal. “BMO’s commitment to supporting our communities extends to our Veterans who have sacrificed so much for the benefit of all.”
One of the most important ways BMO honours this service is by ensuring Veterans are supported, not just once a year but every day. The defence and security community accounts for a higher proportion of the general population in need of mental and physical health support, and homelessness among Veterans is significantly higher. As the official bank of the Defence Community in Canada, BMO makes this donation in line with a long history of support to our service members.
Honouring Indigenous Veterans
BMO has partnered with Last Post Fund who ensure that no Canadian veteran is denied a proper burial, funeral, or military gravestone due to insufficient funds at time of death. BMO’s donation will be allocated to a short film that celebrates and recognizes the work of Last Post Fund’s Indigenous Veterans Initiative. The Initiative provides grave markers to Indigenous Veterans deceased for over five years and lying in unmarked graves, as well as adding traditional names of Indigenous Veterans to existing military grave markers.
Filmmakers include Retired Cpl Desmond Simon, who served as a Combat Engineer in 4 Engineer Support Regiment who is from Elsipogtog First Nation, a Mi’kmaq community in New Brunswick and Nate Gaffney, a Wolastoqiyik filmmaker and photographer.
BMO is the exclusive donor to the film project and this donation reflects its longstanding relationship with the Last Post Fund, which reaches back to the Fund’s inception in Montreal over a hundred years ago in 1909.
Supporting Mental Health and Housing Security
BMO’s donations also target organizations that help those who are struggling with a range of mental illnesses, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and operational stress injury (OSI), those who face such basic needs as finding shelter. These include:
Veterans’ House Canada
- Veterans’ House Canada (VHC) is committed to helping homeless heroes build a better future by providing permanent, affordable, and supportive housing. The organization targets the rising number of unhoused Veterans and combines housing with on-site rehabilitation services. VHC’s first housing community – Veterans’ House: the Andy Carswell Building in Ottawa – opened in early 2021 and provides a home for 40 Veterans who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
- In early 2022, VHC will be launching a national fundraising campaign to build four more homes across Canada, as well as a new website. BMO’s donation will support Veterans at the Andy Carswell Building in Ottawa within the Mental Health and Transition Program.
Wounded Warriors Canada
- Wounded Warriors Canada is a national mental health service provider that utilizes clinical best practices and evidence-based care to bring healing and hope to injured Veterans, First Responders and their families.
- Recognizing that injuries such as PTSD impact the entire family, the organization created the Warrior Kids Camp and Virtual Program to support the secondary impact trauma has on children living with an injured parent. The BMO donation will fund the participation of 80 children through Warrior Kids.
Learn more about BMO’s Community Giving.