August 19, 2017


16° C, Clear

Full Forecast


Advertise With Us

Sagkeeng millionaires donate $600K to local charities

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 30/12/2013 (1327 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

The Fontaines, the generous Sagkeeng First Nation couple who won $50 million in a lottery draw in 2009, handed out $600,000 to Winnipeg charities on Monday.

The family donated $100,000 apiece to the Christmas Cheer Board, Siloam Mission, Rossbrook House, the Children's Hospital Foundation, The Dream Factory and Winnipeg Harvest.

Kirby and Marie Fontaine (from right) present The Dream Factory executive director Grace Thomson with a cheque for $100,016.


Kirby and Marie Fontaine (from right) present The Dream Factory executive director Grace Thomson with a cheque for $100,016.

"We were totally amazed and thrill to be the recipient of such a substantial donation," said Grace Thomson, executive director of The Dream Factory, in a release.  The Dream Factory fulfils dreams for children suffering life-threatening illnesses.

"Since winning the lottery, Kirby and Marie have been so generous to the local community time and again, showing that they are big-hearted people," Thomson said.

At the Christmas Cheer Board, which was facing a revenue shortfall that figured to be upwards of $75,000, the donation will help the organization make ends meet at a time when it was needed the most.

"I was sitting at my desk and I got a phone call saying ‘Kai, you better come to the front because the Fontaines are coming to visit again," said cheer board director Kai Madsen.

"So I went out there right away and had a nice chat with Marie and Kirby. They certainly made my day and the day of all our volunteers."

It’s the second straight year the Fontaines passed along a sizable end-of-the-year donation to the cheer board. Last year, they cut Madsen a cheque for $50,000 to help cover costs over the holiday season.

Madsen said the Christmas Cheer Board needs to raise between $800,000 to $900,000 to keep operations moving forward annually. The numbers for 2013 haven’t been totalled yet (expenses are still being tabulated from the annual Christmas hamper drive), but Madsen said projections had the organization looking at a deficit of anywhere from $40,000-$75,000.

Receiving a $100,000 boost helped remove a lot of worry around the offices, Madsen said, adding that he was admittedly stressing about what the final 2013 numbers were going to look like next month.

"It gives us a nice start for next year," he said. "It just solidifies things for us and gives us now a chance to start looking forward to fundraising for 2014."


Advertise With Us


Updated on Monday, December 30, 2013 at 3:37 PM CST: other charities get cash too -- changed headline

4:11 PM: Updated: amounts and charities.

5:04 PM: Adds another charity, updates image.

5:55 PM: Corrects photo caption.

7:51 PM: added different sum -- $600,000

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective January 2015.

Photo Store

Scroll down to load more