Lacing up with hockey legends and helping to end homelessness in Canada
Three years ago, Graeme Young, Senior Vice President with Colliers and Vice President, Chair Communications Committee of Eva’s Initiatives for Homeless Youth, introduced to Colliers Hockey Helps the Homeless (HHTH), a national organization that runs day hockey tournaments in major cities across Canada. With the help of Greg Peacock, Managing Director, Private Capital Investment Group, an avid hockey player, Graeme got a Colliers Toronto team together.
Having now played to support HHTH Bay St. for three years in a row, the Toronto team (in a joint venture with client Kevric) was one of 12 teams that played in Toronto on April 22, 2017. Cadillac Fairview, Torys LLP, Deloitte and Hatch were among the other companies that participated.
Each team included a professional hockey player. This year, the Colliers/Kevric team drafted Shayne Paul Corson (nicknamed Beefcake), a retired Canadian professional hockey player who played in the National Hockey League (NHL) for the Montréal Canadiens and Toronto Maple Leafs, among others, and Craig Muni, also a retired Canadian professional hockey player who played 819 National Hockey League games over the course of his career.
Hockey Helps the Homeless is an initiative that raises money through fantasy hockey tournaments, helping to fund the work of more than 40 support agencies aiming to end homelessness. The unique element of HHTH is that funds raised in one community stay in that community, providing immediate relief through shelters and survival kits, and supporting longer-term initiatives including transitional housing projects and return-to-work training programs that help to restore the dignity and independence of homeless people.
Beyond being an important and fun event, HHTH is the biggest fundraiser for Eva’s Initiatives. “According to the hockey guys around this office, this is the most fun, organized hockey event they participate in,” says Greg Peacock, who captains the Colliers Toronto team. “I see it as a great tool to raise money locally – one that’s more on the fun side: Besides providing an opportunity to play alongside ex-NHL players, this event ties into Colliers’ competitive yet collaborative culture, and we are excited to see that the Edmonton team did so well in their first year.”
This year, the Toronto initiative raised $300,000, setting the new HHTH Bay St. record. The Colliers team alone raised over $15,000.
2017 also marks the first year another Colliers office joined the HHTH initiative. After three years of leading the initiative in Toronto, Graeme Young reached out to Colliers Edmonton and proposed a friendly rivalry between the two offices. The Edmonton team, led by John Frederickson (Regional Vice President with the Prairie Region) and Ian Stephenson (Associate with Colliers Valuation and Advisory Services), had 12 players in their roster: a mix of Colliers employees and representatives from clients such as GWL and Melcore.
“As this was the first year for Edmonton, it set a baseline for our players, the funds raised and the overall participation,” says John Frederickson. The Edmonton team finished second out of six teams in their division, an impressive showing for their tournament debut. The overall Edmonton initiative, consisting of 10 teams, raised $100,000 – with the Colliers team contributing $8,720 to the total. Ryan Miller, Associate Vice President with Colliers Edmonton, placed first in the office and 12th in the city for fundraising, individually raising over $1,500.
“The biggest thing that resonated with everyone was that the tournament raised money for the local homeless support agencies, so all the money stayed here. Plus, of course, it was great to see the team finishing second in our first tournament ever,” says Ian Stephenson, who championed the Edmonton team.
Congratulations to both Colliers teams for being part of a successful and fun tournament that makes a big difference in the lives of many!
Draft night for HHTH Bay St. – Daren Millard, Canadian sportscaster for Sportsnet, and Colliers' Michael Carew
Draft night for HHTH Bay St. – (From left to right) Colliers' Ryan Watson, Tim Paton, Michael Carew, Taylor Farris
HHTH Bay St. Colliers/Kevric Team
HHTH Edmonton team and jersey