Big donation to 2001 games
By Ed Stack
The Ivey family has once again demonstrated its generosity with a $500,000 donation to the London organization hosting the 2001 Canada Games.
The donation consists of $250,000 from the Richard Ivey Foundation and an equal amount from the Richard and Jean Ivey Fund.
Western will play a big part in the games and will house many of the athletes. As well, several events will take place on campus.
"This donation is a wonderful kick-start for the fund-raising campaign," said Libby Fowler, co-chair of the London Alliance host society.
The money will be used to pay salaries, office expenses and other related costs of planning the Games over the next two years, Fowler said. She said an additional $2.6 million will be needed to operate the event.
"We knew the organizers would be launching their campaign sooner than later, so this seemed to the best time to help," said Richard Ivey, Sr.
Western's VP-external Ted Garrard, co-chair of fund-raising for the Games, said the donation has given a tremendous start to the fund-raising campaign. "The Ivey's are always the first to step forward. They have really demonstrated leadership in the size of their gifts."
The discussion on a new stadium at Western to be built in time for the Games will be brought forth at the next Board of Governors meeting on Nov. 27, but the money will also be used to support the overall operation of the Games, Garrard said.
Since the announcement of the Ivey Foundation moving its offices to Toronto, Ivey said there will be less focus on London organizations. "Undoubtedly, the focus will shift for next year," he said. He added the move is necessary to make the office more accessible to his children all of whom live in Toronto.
Although the Ivey Foundation does not usually provide donations to support athletics, the Canada Games are seen as a cause worthy of support because of the large impact the Games will have on the community, Ivey said.
The Ivey family has made substantial contributions to Western in the past, including a $11 million gift to Western's Business Administration program, which now boasts his name.