It was a magical night at the Royal York when over 400 guests gathered to celebrate the 20-year legacy of CAN Fund supporting the best athletic talent in Canada.
Joined by an incredible roster of 50 CAN Fund recipients, and CAN Fund Alumni spanning 10 Olympic and 10 Paralympic Games, the evening was filled with inspirational stories which further highlighted why CAN Fund’s work is so instrumental.
Amongst the many memorable moments included Jayna Hefford who shared the impact of CAN Fund supporting not only her but every hockey player on her team in 2005. Jayna is a 5x Olympic Hockey medalist and multiple CAN Fund recipient and SVP of the PWHL.
2x Olympic medalist Brian Price shared how childhood cancer stunted his growth making him the perfect size to be a coxswain. Watch the Video.
A surprise “CAN Fund CALL” by Conrad Leinemann with 2x Olympian Jacqueline Simoneau, gave everyone the opportunity to experience the pure joy reaction of what it means to have people invest in you and how this support helps make dreams more achievable.
Four more athletes were surprised at the Gala becoming 2024 CAN Fund recipients. Congratulations to:
Allison Lang, Molly Simpson, Emma Wright, Greg Stewart and Brooke Dhondt.
Recently 905 athletes applied to CAN Fund and they are waiting, hoping to receive the CAN Fund Call because becoming a CAN Fund recipient is a game changer for them.
The Gala included live entertainment, a fabulous silent auction, live auction with auctioneer Jay Mandarino, CAN Fund Boutique, the inaugural CAN Fund #150Women BE EPIC Awards were presented to 12 EPIC women and CAN Fund Founder Jane Roos shared a behind the scenes recap of 20 years of living her WHY.
So much gratitude to every guest who took the time out of their busy lives to SHOW UP for our athletes and make this 20-year celebration MAGICAL.
“The Gala was amazing! There was delicious food, incredible speakers, awards, a choir and a silent and live auction. Thank you to the entire CAN Fund team for organizing such a powerful and inspiring event. Thank you to everyone who attended and donated. The night was so magical.”– Allison Lang, Sitting Volleyball, 2024 Paralympic Hopeful and multiple CAN Fund recipient
“It was truly special to finally meet the people who have been fueling Canadian athletes’ dreams for the last 20 years. I loved being able to share my experiences as an athlete and how being a CAN Fund recipient impacted my journey to an Olympic podium. I am very grateful for all the generous supporters who continue to impact the lives of hundreds of athletes!” – Ryan Sommer, Bobsled – 2022 Olympic Bronze Medalist and CAN Fund Alumni
“Thank you for your incredible work – the night was a super success and it was so nice to be reunited with the CAN Fund community” – Catherine Garceau, Artistic Swimming – 2000 Olympic Bronze Medalist and CAN Fund Alumni
“I’m leaving the event with even more energy to make a difference in my community.” – Carole Anne Chenard
“What a SPECTACULAR night celebrating 20th years of CANFund and all of its magic! Big CONGRATS to each of you for the tireless work that went into the gala.” – Cathy Mermer
“Congratulations on the outstanding Gala event last night. It truly was ‘magical’! We were all surprised by the disparity that exists across Team Canada sports with respect to costs to participate. Having the current and past Olympians on the risers around the ballroom to candidly express their challenges was an outstanding idea. The venue, the cocktail party, the meal and the speeches were all GOLD MEDAL worthy!” – Ted Larkin