Over $1.6M Raised In Tim Hortons Fundraiser In Support Of Residential School Survivors

Tims restaurant owners Joe Quewezance and Mitch Shuter outside their restaurant in Kamloops, B.C. (CNW Group/Tim Hortons)

  • 100 per cent of the retail price of all the Orange Sprinkle Donuts sold is being donated to the Orange Shirt Society and the Indian Residential School Survivors Society
  • More than 2,300 Orange Sprinkle Donuts were sold at a Tim Hortons restaurant in Kamloops, B.C., on the first day of the campaign, which was the biggest one-day total in the country
  • The plan for the fundraising campaign was developed with a group of Indigenous Tim Hortons restaurant owners and after consulting with a number of Indigenous leaders

Tim Hortons and its 1,500 restaurant owners across Canada are proud to announce that more than one million Orange Sprinkle Donuts were sold and more than $1.6 million was raised in the fundraising campaign in support of residential school survivors.

The Orange Sprinkle Donuts first went on sale on Sept. 30, which was Orange Shirt Day, and were available for a full week with 100 per cent of the retail price (excluding taxes) being donated to the Orange Shirt Society and the Indian Residential School Survivors Society.

After the shocking news about the discovery of children buried on the grounds of the former Kamloops residential school, Tim Hortons restaurant owners across Canada began asking what they could do to lend their support. A Tim Hortons restaurant co-owned by Shane Gottfriedson, Joe Quewezance and Mitch Shuter is located a short distance from the site of the former Kamloops residential school. They along with other Indigenous Tim Hortons restaurant owners were part of a working group that guided the launch of this fundraising campaign.

Their Kamloops restaurant sold more than 2,300 orange-sprinkled donuts on the first day of the campaign, which was the most in the country.

“We can’t say thank you enough to everyone across Canada who supported this campaign – it’s such an amazing result and we are so proud,” said Gottfriedson, former Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation chief and former B.C. regional chief for the Assembly of First Nations.

“I also want to thank Tim Hortons and my fellow Tims owners across Canada who stood beside us in launching this campaign and put their hearts into making it such an incredible success story.”

Landon Miller was also part of the working group of Tims restaurant owners for this campaign. He launched his own grassroots orange donut campaign at his restaurant on Six Nations of the Grand River territory in the days after the Kamloops discovery. Sharon and Brian Bruyere of the Sagkeeng First Nation in Manitoba were two other members of the working group for this campaign.

Orange Shirt Day has been observed on Sept. 30 since 2013, when Phyllis Webstad told her story of her first day of residential school. She was six years old in 1973, excited to be wearing her new clothes and going to school for the first time, only to have her shiny new orange shirt ripped away and learn that she didn’t matter. Her organization, the Orange Shirt Society, and the Every Child Matters movement she created continue to raise awareness about Canada’s history of residential schools, along with honouring the survivors and their families and the children who never returned home.

“Words can’t express the gratitude that I and the Orange Shirt Society feel with the news of the success of this amazing fundraiser!” said Webstad. “Thank you Tim Hortons and thank you Canada for all your support!”

The Indian Residential School Survivors Society has a more than 20-year history of providing services to residential school survivors, their families, and those dealing with intergenerational traumas. One of the Society’s goals is to continually expand support to partner organizations and maximize access to culturally sensitive, emotional, mental, physical and spiritual care.

“The Indian Residential School Survivors Society would like to express our profound gratitude to Tim Hortons and all the restaurant owners across Canada for their commitment to reconciliation by taking action to initiate their Orange Sprinkle Donut campaign,” said Angela White, Executive Director of the Indian Residential School Survivors Society.

“We are working tirelessly to support survivors of residential schools and their families through programs and services for the youth, 2SLGBTQ+, elders and families. This donation will allow us to ensure the quality of programs are enhanced in providing safe cultural spaces, and build capacity in offering additional counsellors, therapists and knowledge keepers.”

Tim Hortons thanks its restaurant owners and guests across Canada for coming together to support residential school survivors and the campaign, said Hope Bagozzi, Chief Marketing Officer for Tim Hortons.

“We knew Canadians would rally with us to support the Orange Shirt Society and the Indian Residential School Survivors Society but we are truly awed and humbled by the response,” said Bagozzi. “Thank you to everyone who purchased an Orange Sprinkle Donut and a special thank you to Shane, Joe and Mitch, Sharon and Brian, and Landon for being so generous with your time, sharing your stories with Canada, and guiding this campaign.”

Tim Hortons also thanks Aspire Bakeries for their support in joining us and contributing over $100,000 toward the campaign.

You can visit the Tim Hortons website to read more about the Orange Shirt Society, the Indian Residential School Survivors Society, and the stories of Tim Hortons restaurant owners Shane Gottfriedson, Joe Quewezance and Mitch Shuter, Landon Miller, and Sharon and Brian Bruyere.


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