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Desjardins donates $1.8 million to encourage kids stay in school
Today, as part of the 2016 Co-op Week, more than 7,000 elected officers and employees are helping young people in Quebec and Ontario succeed.

Launch of the #DesjardinsFoundation Prizes to support projects carried out by people in educational and community settings who make a difference.

Lévis (Qc), October 20, 2016 - Desjardins Group is celebrating Co-op Week this year by carrying out simultaneous and unprecedented initiatives to support an important cause: helping kids stay in school. Today on International Credit Union Day, more than 7,000 Desjardins elected officers and employees are taking part in more than 420 projects to help Quebec and Ontario students succeed in school. Altogether, Desjardins will be donating $1.8 million to these projects.

"Even though it seems like the numbers have improved in recent years, the school dropout rate remains problematic and still exceeds 15% in Quebec. That's why I'm happy to see the thousands of elected officers and employees working together as one big team to help keep kids in school by lending a helping hand to schools in hundreds of Quebec and Ontario municipalities," said Guy Cormier, President and CEO of Desjardins Group. Mr. Cormier also pointed out that every year, Desjardins donates $18 million to various initiatives to support education in Quebec.

Here are some examples of projects that the 260 caisse and Federation teams took part in: awarding student scholarships, volunteering in schools, holding conferences about staying in school, collecting books and opening up new spaces. While each of these projects makes a real difference in young people's lives, here are some of the major ones:

Students from Polyvalente Le Carrefour in Val-d'Or have new sports equipment thanks to a $90,000 donation from Caisse Desjardins de l'Est de l'Abitibi.

Teachers from 15 schools in 9 cities in Quebec are able to count on the volunteers from Caisse Desjardins de l'Éducation at any time during the school year.

A modern and attractive bike spinning room for women was installed in Louiseville, thanks to a $35,000 donation from Caisse de l'Ouest de la Mauricie.

Caisses from Beauce organize conferences with a training centre that helps young people who have trouble in school.

2 Major contests: Winners in each Quebec region

Desjardins Foundation used this day to launch the call for applications for the #DesjardinsFoundation Prizes. The goal of this new program is to provide financial assistance to people in educational and community settings to help them carry out projects for students in elementary and high school. The submitted projects must be worth up to a maximum of $3,000. The call for application ends at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, November 7, 2016. Click here to submit a project.
100 for 100 initiative: Become a Young Leader of Tomorrow
Desjardins will also bestow the title of Young Leader of Tomorrow upon 100 young people in Quebec and Ontario, ages 14 to 17, who stand out in their community through their leadership, academic success or community involvement. For one year, these young people will be mentored by one of 100 young executives from Desjardins Group. The application form is available at The application deadline is November 13, 2016.

Co-op Week is celebrated each year in October across the country and throughout the world, with the goal to reiterate the mission and values that guide cooperative organizations. 

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