Statement made on 18 June 2009 by Senator Rod Zimmer (retired)
Hon. Rod A.A. Zimmer:
Honourable senators, I rise today to follow up on Senator Fairbairn's motion and Senator Champagne's comments made in the Senate earlier this month, June 4, 2009, regarding Canadian Paralympians.
Senator Champagne was right when she said that the problem is a lack of sponsors because the Paralympic Games are not known well enough by the general public. Therefore, Senator Fairbairn, Chair of the Canadian Paralympic Foundation, and I, a director of the foundation, in addition to the entire Paralympic Foundation and the Canadian Paralympic Committee, are in the process of arranging a gala reception, which will be held in early September of this year in order to help combat this lack of sponsorship.
Honourable senators, with the exceptional support of Mr. Frank Stronach and Ms. Belinda Stronach, this year's honorary chairs, we will host an elegant and intimate fundraising cocktail reception at the Magna Golf Club in Aurora. The event will feature an international menu of gourmet food, exotic drinks, live music and Canadian Paralympians who have won medals in the recent World Paralympic Games. A live auction will feature five exceptional packages, including two foursomes of golf at the Magna Golf Club and one foursome package for a one-week skiing vacation in Colorado, donated by Mr. Stronach.
The goal of this event will be to show our Paralympians that we do care, and we are ready to support, appreciate, encourage and inspire them. We are working hard to inform the Canadian business, political and professional elite of the need to sponsor these amazing Paralympians who are working so hard to proudly represent our country with little to no recognition from the public.
Honourable senators, we look forward to making this reception the event of the year, and I hope that all of you will attend, support and inspire our Paralympians, our heroes.