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Over $1M raised for local charities in London, Ont., auto group fundraiser

Ryan Finch, president of Finch Auto Group, as seen in a video announcing the total funds raised. via seefinchfirst.com

Finch Auto Group says thanks to hundreds of individuals and its own matching donations, $1.15 million has been donated to charities in the Middlesex-London region.

The final tally is well beyond the initial goal of $200,000 in four months, the auto group adds.

Read more: Charitable donations in Manitoba dwindling amid COVID-19: survey

The ‘Finch Match my Donation’ campaign launched in September with a pledge to match $50,000 per month for four months.

Instead, nearly 2,000 individual donations brought in more than $850,000 total, inspiring Finch Auto Group to “dig deeper and match an additional $100,000 in donations” on top of the previously-pledged $200,000.

“COVID-19 has been hard on everyone,” president Ryan Finch said in a release.

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“We wanted to support our community in a way that was different from our typical efforts. This campaign is unique because we asked Londoners what local causes were important to them and the response was overwhelming.”

Read more: ‘Things are tough:’ Canadian charities struggling as coronavirus pandemic continues

The auto group says due to challenges resulting from the coronavirus pandemic, “revenues are down and many charities and non-profit organizations face an uncertain future.”

Finch says more than 100 local causes, charities and non-profits will benefit from the fundraiser.

Among those groups was Growing Chefs, which was able to “recoup much-needed funds that were lost due to the closure of its headquarters.”

Growing Chefs’ executive administrator Jennifer Wyant says without the campaign, the losses would have been “catastrophic.”

“In a time when the global pandemic completely upended our fundraising efforts, this local campaign created a spark of inspiration during an otherwise dark time,” Wyant said.

“It motivated Londoners to come together, to stand up for, rally behind, and financially support their favourite charities.”

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A full list of those supported by the campaign can be found online on the Finch Match My Donation page, but among them are Mission Services London, the Canadian Mental Health Association, the Grand Theatre, Youth Opportunities Unlimited, the London Abused Women’s Centre, the World Wildlife Fund and the Aeolian Hall.

 

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