All over Toronto, people are helping others; lifting up their neighbours however they can. Norm Fraser is one of those helping by being a WoodGreen donor.
A long-time Toronto resident, Fraser deeply values supporting the very real efforts of those seeking to bring real change to real people. Deciding which organization would best convert his donation into making a difference was key.
“I looked around to see if I could find anyone else that was doing as much for as many people as WoodGreen,” says Fraser. “I could not. So I chose WoodGreen as my agent of change.”
Impressed by Homeward Bound program
A retired investment banker, Fraser has been a valued donor to WoodGreen for more than a decade. While living in Toronto’s east end he had heard of WoodGreen, but it wasn’t until a media article about the Homeward Bound program that he looked a little closer at the good happening outside his door.
“WoodGreen had clearly thought [Homeward Bound] through to give the moms the whole package,” he says. “The moms get a good education, the kids are cared for and it’s a safe environment….That really impressed me, and it continues to.”
Donors want to see what they're supporting
Fraser is very intentional in the community organizations he supports. It’s essential, for example, that a charity is open to its donors seeing its work and facilities in person.
“WoodGreen feels close to home and its impact feels more personal.”
Over the years, Fraser says he’s seen the many different types of people WoodGreen helps. “They have a very good sense of their community and its needs.”
But what has really persuaded him to continue to be a donor is WoodGreen’s ability to adapt to the changing needs of that community. Its wrap-around approach to community service is a key reason Fraser feels compelled to support WoodGreen.
“Funding is their lifeblood. It enables WoodGreen to go forward and affect real change.”
Fraser says he now sees the essential role the organization plays in the city, from supporting seniors, youth and at-risk mothers, to assisting newcomers as well as those experiencing homelessness, addiction, mental health , or financial crises.
Earning the respect of the donor
“I not only like WoodGreen, I respect WoodGreen,” he says. “It’s a critical component of the life and times of the eastern side of Toronto. I don’t know how that part of the city could carry on without the presence of WoodGreen.”
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