Our Views

Newport team bands together to help fight COVID-19

Commits $120,000 to support frontline workers and community programs across Canada

From the onset of the COVID-19 crisis in March, our team has rallied together with two main goals in mind: providing the very best service to Newport Private Wealth clients in a time of market volatility and economic uncertainty, and determining how we could best support frontline organizations and workers that need our help now.

Naturally, our thoughts turned to the many Newport clients who work in the medical field, and whose health and well-being has been top of mind in recent weeks. We’ve watched them go to exceptional lengths to care for ill Canadians, while hearing their stories of supply shortages, endless workdays and extraordinary examples of sacrifice and heroism from the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic.

We heard from professionals such as Susan Davis, the organizational culture and corporate secretary at Sinai Health System Foundation in Toronto, which is on the forefront of both patient care and research into solutions for COVID-19. Her message was clear:

“Meals for our healthcare workers are so important right now. They can’t always take the time to prepare healthy food to ensure they have the energy to do their jobs,” Davis told us. “And they also need their spirits lifted. These meals remind them that the community is at their side and that is a real morale boost.”

Those conversations, among many others, laid the groundwork for our approach to giving back.

After several weeks of research, planning and internal fundraising, Newport has created a $120,000 COVID-19 support fund—including a $50,000 corporate donation by our firm and more than $70,000 in donations from Newport employees—to aid hospitals and community programs dedicated to helping Canadians in these challenging times.

“Medical professionals and support staff on the COVID-19 frontlines, as well as researchers conducting vaccine development and testing in labs across the country, need as much help as we can provide right now,” said David Lloyd, Newport Private Wealth’s co-founder and chief wealth management officer.

“We’re proud that we can help them carry on with their critical work, while also supporting the community organizations that will be crucial in helping Canadians recover from this crisis.”

The bulk of the funds will be used to purchase supplies and provide patient care, while also delivering meals and snacks to frontline workers sourced from local independent restaurants, many of which have been left reeling due to widespread shutdowns that have crippled the hospitality industry. A range of organizations across Toronto, Edmonton and Kelowna—communities where Newport is located—will benefit, including:

In addition to food for frontline workers and our financial contributions, by leveraging our network of contacts, we were also able to work with Dillon’s Distillery in the Niagara region—which has temporarily shifted some of its manufacturing away from spirit production—to source 125 bottles of hand sanitizer that will be distributed to hospitals.

Our aim was to provide support not only to large organizations such as hospitals and food banks, but also to ground-breaking mental health programs such as Alberta’s Text4Hope program, supported by several Foundations including the University Hospital Foundation, which provides daily resources with tips, coping strategies and professional resources to Albertans struggling with depression or anxiety due to the COVID-19 crisis.

“We’re seeing a real surge in the need for programs that deliver mental health support,” explains Dr. Jodi L. Abbott, president and CEO for the University Hospital Foundation in Edmonton. “Free to join, subscribers receive daily text messages of advice and encouragement from mental health experts to help Albertans develop healthy personal coping skills and resiliency. More than 41,000 Albertans are now subscribed to the program and funding is being secured to accommodate about 360,000 more.”

Our team also came up with the idea to create hand-written notes of encouragement—including the artwork of employees’ children—for healthcare professionals and support staff. The notes will be included in boxes of meals, snacks and supplies delivered to frontline workers in the weeks ahead.

From fundraising to simple gestures of gratitude, the Newport team is passionate about helping Canadians remain strong and successfully navigate their way through this unprecedented crisis. And while ours is just one initiative among thousands being rolled out in towns and cities across Canada right now, we are heartened by the countless efforts of communities to stay focused and continue working together.