TORONTO, ON – Canada’s oldest and largest bakery, Bimbo Canada has created a Legacy Space at its head office in Etobicoke, Ontario today as part of a five-year commitment to The Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund (DWF). This will help build cultural understanding, connections and a path to reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples.
Bimbo Canada’s Legacy Space is a welcoming, physical and symbolic place dedicated to providing education and spreading awareness about Indigenous history and the journey of reconciliation. It features a mural commissioned by Blake Angeconeb, an Anishinaabe artist who, thorough his illustration, communicates how the company is ‘Moving Forward, Together’ by incorporating artistic elements from The Seven Teachings – a guiding Anishinaabe principle that supports living a good life in peace and without conflict.
“Bimbo Canada believes reconciliation is an important social issue for all Canadians, including our associates,” says Teresa Schoonings, Senior Director of Sustainability for Bimbo Canada. “We are committed to doing our part to create a safe, welcoming space that provides education and spreads awareness about Indigenous history and our journey towards reconciliation.”
As part of the five-year commitment, Bimbo Canada will become a DWF Ambassador dedicated to Reconciliation and consistent reconciliACTIONs throughout the year. This includes providing ongoing training and educational opportunities for associates through The Indigenous Cultural Competency Training (ICCT) program offered by DWF. This training provides participants with necessary support to improve skills, knowledge, attitudes and values necessary to move reconciliation forward. Each course is developed within a cultural competency framework that focuses on moving organizations towards being culturally proficient and promoting cultural humility when engaging with Indigenous employees, colleagues, customers/clients, communities and others. The training is structured to promote cultural safety in the learning environment to ensure that all participants feel welcome and respected while being able to express their views.
“The Legacy Space program is an opportunity for organizations to play an important role in their communities, build cultural understanding, and create a path toward reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples,” says Sarah Midanik, President and CEO of The Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund. “It is a great honour to include Bimbo Canada as a partner and ambassador advocating for and embodying the important work our organization is committed to every day.”
This recent initiative is one of many contributions Bimbo Canada makes to support the company’s larger goal of building a more diverse and equitable workplace so each associate can fulfil their potential and know they belong. The company believes every associate has a responsibility to contribute to diversity, equity and belonging and actively encourages employees to live this at work and share back within their communities.
About Bimbo Canada
Bimbo Canada is Canada’s largest bakery, operating for more than 100 years. It is a leading producer and distributor of fresh packaged breads and snacks with more than 1,000 products across 18 brands Canadians know and love, like Dempster’s®, Stonemill®, Villaggio®, Vachon® and Takis®. We are proud to feed Canadian families with safe, high-quality products they can trust made by Canadians, for Canadians at 16 bakeries, 15 sales centres and 191 depots across the country.
Bimbo Canada is a wholly owned subsidiary of Grupo Bimbo, the world’s largest baking company. Together, they are nourishing a better world with delicious baked goods and snacks by building a sustainable, highly productive and deeply humane company. The company is dedicated to building a diverse workplace that promotes equity and belonging, where all employees can develop and contribute to the transformation of the company, the baking industry and our communities.
About the Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund
Inspired by Chanie’s story and Gord’s call to build a better Canada, the Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund (DWF) aims to build cultural understanding and create a path towards reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. DWF’s work centres around improving the lives of Indigenous people by building awareness, education, and connections between all people.
The Legacy Spaces program is an opportunity for organizations large and small to participate in their own reconciliACTIONs, which are simple acts with the power to bring us together in the spirit of reconciliation, sharing, and education. As Gord would say, they inspire us to “Do Something.”
For more, visit www.downiewenjack.ca @downiewenjack