$2.5-million donation for Quebec mothers and children
The largest-ever philanthropic donation by a bank in Quebec
The Sainte-Justine Hospital Foundation and the Co-Chair of its Growing up healthy campaign, L. Jacques Ménard, O.C., today announced an exceptional donation by BMO Financial Group: $2.5 million for the cause of mothers and children in Quebec. The donation is earmarked for a state-of-the-art educational and scientific conference centre in Sainte-Justine’s future university teaching building.
BMO Financial Group's gift is the largest philanthropic donation ever made by a bank in Quebec. Already included in the master development plan of Sainte-Justine Mother-Child University Hospital Centre, the academic building conference centre will be central to Sainte-Justine’s mission of providing highly specialized mother-child care, educating mother-child healthcare professionals, and conducting research and awareness activities.
"Acquiring knowledge is our passion at BMO Financial Group," said Mr. Ménard, who is also President of BMO Financial Group in Quebec. "We believe that our success as a company depends on our commitment to promoting learning by our employees and on our client focus. That is why we have decided to support Saint-Justine’s renowned professionals and educational mission by investing in a conference centre that will enable this institution to be even more active and effective in both training and research."
According to Mr. Ménard, the BMO-Sainte-Justine Conference Centre will facilitate the organizing of distance learning and national and international scientific conferences-in short, developing and sharing knowledge about the health of mothers and children. "This will have a direct impact on the quality of care and research and will position Sainte-Justine as a leader in the field," he added. Attending today's announcement were Robert Lacroix, the Rector of Université de Montréal, and Dr. Raymond Lalande, Vice-Dean, Undergraduate Studies, of the Université de Montréal Faculty of Medicine.
Raymond Boucher, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Sainte-Justine Hospital Foundation, thanked Mr. Ménard as Co-Chair of the campaign and donor. "From the very start of the campaign, L. Jacques Ménard’s involvement has been extraordinary," he said. "The team he forms with campaign head Claude Brien Coutu is simply unbeatable! A true ambassador of Sainte-Justine’s Plan for the Future, Mr. Ménard has made himself a champion of Sainte-Justine when it comes to bringing organizations and businesses on board. Today, with the commitment of BMO Financial Group, he has more than ever shown this to be true. Quebec's business community has a key role to play in providing Sainte-Justine with the technology and infrastructure that will enable its physicians, nursing staff, researchers and teachers to be on the leading edge."
A clearing house for information and scholarly exchange
The conference centre will be part of the future academic building. It will house two amphitheatres equipped with the latest telecommunications technology (videoconferencing, virtual conferencing, distance learning, etc.) that will allow researchers and clinicians to interact with their colleagues in Quebec and around the globe. The conference centre will also be a state-of-the-art educational facility for Quebec's mother-child healthcare professionals, most of whom are trained at Sainte-Justine. Additionally, it will be the site of many mother-child healthcare activities held each year at Sainte-Justine for the general public and the healthcare system.
Co-chaired by Claude Brien Coutu and L. Jacques Ménard, O.C., Chairman of the Board of BMO Nesbitt Burns, the Sainte-Justine Hospital Foundation's Growing up healthy campaign has set itself the objective of raising $100 million to support research development, the teaching mission and capital improvements (technology and infrastructure) and to enable physicians and other healthcare professionals to provide the best possible care to Quebec's mothers and children.
Founded in 1817 as Bank of Montreal, BMO Financial Group is a supplier of diversified financial services to clients throughout North America. With more than 34,000 employees, BMO Financial Group is one of Canada's top corporate donors, having given more than $21.4 million to thousands of charities and non-profit groups in 2002.
The Sainte-Justine Hospital Foundation is dedicated to ensuring the continued leadership of Sainte-Justine Hospital, the university hospital centre for mothers and children, by forging a genuine partnership between the institution and its donors and building a heritage for the future. Donations can be made by calling 1-888-235-3667; via the Web at www.sainte-justine.org; by surface mail sent to the Sainte-Justine Hospital Foundation, 3175 Côte-Sainte-Catherine Road, Montreal, Quebec, H3T 1C5; or at any BMO Bank of Montreal branch in Quebec.