Local organizations that could have benefitted from the $300k raised by the Adamson BBQ GoFundMe

After a GoFundMe campaign pulled in more than $300,000 to cover the legal expenses of Adamson Barbecue owner Adam Skelly, many have been appalled to see such big bucks raised for a man who blatantly refused to follow COVID-19 rules while also breaking other regulations.

At the time of publication, the fundraising campaign had received $326,890. That’s a significant amount of money that could be donated to the many people and businesses who are struggling during this difficult time, as well as the hospitals that are in need of personal protective equipment.

For those looking to give back this holiday season, here are some Toronto organizations that could use support during the pandemic.

Hand Up Toronto

Hand Up Toronto delivers nutritious meals to low-income households with children and vulnerable youth. Currently the organization is providing families experiencing food insecurity with emergency food hampers which include pantry staple foods such as dried beans, rice, barley, and lentils as well as other supplementary items.

COVID Care Packages & Toy Drive

Organized by Inder Gill, this GoFundMe campaign is raising money to create care packages for people experiencing homelessness in the city. The packages will include winter essentials, hand sanitizers, cough drops, vitamins and dry food. Gill is also taking in old toys through contactless pickup which, after thorough sanitization, will be donated to the East End Children’s Centre Toronto.

Support Sinai Health and UofT’s COVID-19 research

A team of researchers at Sinai Health and the University of Toronto are developing an antibody-based test that will identify who is immune to COVID-19.  Dr. Jeff Wrana and his colleagues are testing upwards of 10,000 COVID-19 tests each day to gather information that will be crucial in making decisions about how and when we return to our normal activities. For a limited time, each donation will be matched by fellow donors Larry and Judy Tenenbaum.

Help TeamUHN Fight COVID-19

To treat patients with COVID-19, healthcare workers need the necessary supplies including masks, eye protection, gowns and gloves. The hospital is asking for donations that will not only go towards PPE but also towards Toronto Western and Toronto General’s research initiatives into faster diagnoses and treatments.

Toronto Fundraising for the Homeless

This GoFundMe campaign, started by Peyton Florio, is raising money to procure non-perishable food items, blankets, water filters, winter jackets and clothing for people experiencing homelessness in Toronto.

Feed the Frontlines TO

Feed the Frontlines TO has raised more than $500,000 to reduce food insecurity since the onset of the pandemic. Donations are used to place large meal orders for Toronto’s frontline workers, brought in from local restaurants.

Toronto Tiny Shelters

Khaleel Seivwright is the 28-year-old Toronto carpenter who made headlines after launching a fundraising campaign to acquire materials to build tiny portable shelters for people living on the streets in Toronto. The city recently imposed a ban on Seivwright’s project, and he is now hoping to receive 50,000 signatures on a petition to the city in hopes the ban will be reversed. In the meantime he is still collecting donations to acquire more materials to build the shelters.

Toronto Indigenous Harm Reduction

This GoFundMe campaign began in April to address the lack of basic necessities for Indigenous people experiencing homelessness in Toronto. Toronto Indigenous Harm Reduction is raising money to provide access to basic necessities, harm reduction supplies, sexual, reproductive health and prenatal supports, as well as traditional food and medicine to vulnerable members of the Indigenous community.

Toronto Overdose Prevention Society

Toronto’s opioid crisis has not slowed down over the course of the pandemic. The Toronto Overdose Prevention Society raises funds to support direct action aimed at increasing awareness among citizens of Toronto about the preventable nature of overdose deaths. The group consists of stakeholders in harm reduction, people who use drugs, peers, frontline harm reduction workers and advocates.

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