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The power of giving back

Jonathan Toews donates $1 million for ‘Dakota’s Future’ & will serve as Campaign’s Honorary Chair

Dakota Community Centre announced today that Jonathan Toews has made a donation of $1 million towards the Centre’s largest-ever fundraising effort, the Dakota Futures Capital Campaign. It was also announced that Jonathan Toews will serve as the Campaign’s Honorary Chair.

“We are extremely grateful to Jonathan for his leadership as Honorary Chair of our Campaign and his transformational donation to the Dakota Community Centre,” said Tom Thiessen, Chair, Dakota Community Centre Board of Directors. “His generosity reinforces our belief in the importance of access to wellness, recreation and sport programs as key to a healthy community.”

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“From my earliest days playing hockey, Dakota Community Centre has always played a pivotal role in my upbringing and my career”,
said Toews. “Today, I continue to be honoured to have my name associated with the Sportsplex on the Dakota campus. My parents have instilled in me the importance of giving back, and I believe that in supporting Dakota, we will see endless possibilities for the Community Centre’s future and transformation in the lives of our community members.”

The donation from the Jonathan Toews Foundation, the largest ever private donation to a community centre in Manitoba, was officially announced today at an event at the Dakota Community Centre, in the south St. Vital community of Winnipeg where Jonathan grew up. The event was attended by Mr. Toews’ parents, Andrée Gilbert and Bryan Toews, his brother David Toews, along with invited guests including public officials, community leaders, members of the Dakota Community Centre Board and the Dakota Futures Capital Campaign Cabinet and other supporters.

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The Dakota Futures Capital Campaign will support the construction of a new 60,000 sq. ft. Fieldhouse, along with future development on the Dakota Community Centre campus. The new Fieldhouse will include a 30,000+ sq. ft. gymnasium that will accommodate multiple court sports, such as basketball and volleyball, sport training and conditioning, as well as a host of other sport and recreational events at the local, national and international levels. A three-lane walking/running track, sprint tracks and studio space for health and wellness programs will also be part of the new facility. The Fieldhouse will be connected to the existing Jonathan Toews Sportsplex through an enclosed connection and is expected to open in the Fall of 2017.

“We are so proud that Jonathan has chosen to give back to the community in this way. Our family has such fond memories of hockey practices and friendships made at the Dakota Community Centre. We look forward to the opening of the new Fieldhouse and the continued growth of the Dakota  campus,” said Jonathan’s parents Andrée Gilbert and Bryan Toews. “Through programs for all ages and acting as a gathering place in our community, the Dakota Community Centre transforms thousands of lives each year,” said Michele Augert, CEO of the Dakota Community Centre. “Jonathan’s generous gift and his important role in the Campaign will ensure Dakota’s vision of creating an engaged, healthy vibrant community will continue for generations.” 

Further announcements regarding the Dakota Futures Capital Campaign will be made at a later date.

About the Dakota Community Centre/Jonathan Toews Sportsplex

Incorporated in 1987, the Dakota Community Centre has significantly contributed to shaping Winnipeg’s sport and recreation landscape. The Community Centre’s primary facility, the 95,000 square foot Jonathan Toews Sportsplex, houses two indoor ice rinks, a gymnasium, nursery school, skate shop, athletic centre, strength training facility, as well as numerous multi-purpose spaces. The Sportsplex was named in Jonathan Toews’ honour in 2010 in recognition of his history with the Dakota Community Centre, his support of his hometown of Winnipeg as well as his numerous hockey achievements. Mr. Toews grew up in South St. Vital and began his hockey career as a Dakota Lazer, playing out of the Dakota Community Centre.

With a focus on “Building Possibilities / Transforming Lives”, the Dakota Futures Capital Campaign will raise funds to support the construction of a new 60,000 sq. ft. Fieldhouse and other improvements on the Dakota Community Centre campus.

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