With the launch of crowdfunding initiatives such as #TorontoStrong Fund by the City of Toronto and the Toronto Foundation, individuals and businesses are stepping up to raise money to support the victims of Monday’s van attack that left 10 dead and 14 injured.
Jas Brar, president and CEO of T-shirt business Entripy, said he was in shock after hearing about the attack and was moved to do something quickly to start raising money for those affected.
“I assumed somebody had a medical incident and lost control of their vehicle. But as the news started unfolding, I realized very quickly that this just wasn’t an accident … I was horrified and stunned at the same time,” he told Global News.
“Why not … use our ability to get a website up quickly, get production done right away and support a cause? And we knew we had the means, it’s just something I felt we had to do.”
He said the effort was organized by email Monday evening and the first shirt was printed by noon on Tuesday.
Brar said he would like to see “thousands of T-shirts” printed and said all funds raised will be donated.
“We hope to raise as much as we possibly can. One hundred per cent of the proceeds are going to the cause. We’re holding nothing back, which is really important,” he said while noting he will be asking external auditors to go over the transactions in an effort to be transparent.
“It doesn’t bring back their loved ones, but it’s something small that I think will go a long way and we hope to help as many as we can.”
As for the design of the shirt, which shows the TorontoStrong hashtag and the city’s skyline, he said they wanted something simple, yet powerful.
“We wanted to go with something that everybody could resonate with. The Toronto skyline is beautiful and the second thing was a hashtag that was already trending,” he said.
Sukha Bhamra, the company’s visual brand director who designed the shirt, said he came back with 11 concepts after being told to create something on Monday.
“As much as you want to be creative, you want to get the message across and it had to be bold … Showing the skyline is always important and we’ve got a beautiful skyline,” Bhamra said.