January 26, 2024

Elks made an impact in the community in 2023

EDMONTON, AB – The Edmonton Elks have always been engrained in the community and 2023 was no different.

Players, coaches, cheer team members, mascots, and staff were out in full force during the year, to the tune of over 2,286 hours of community contributions. In fact, over the course of the season the Elks averaged a community appearance nearly every day – averaging 30 per month from May to October. In all, the Elks made 237 appearances with almost 1,000 individuals from the organization taking part in the endeavors.

“The Edmonton Elks have always maintained a strong relationship with the people of Edmonton and Northern Alberta,” President and CEO Rick LeLacheur said. “We look forward to our continued involvement in the community in 2024.”

The Elks philanthropic efforts extended from community outreach to charitable undertakings, with over 200 non-profits supported in 2023.

Historical pillars of the Elks social outreach remained in place, with the Purolator Tackle Hunger Donation drive raising almost 40,000 lbs of food for the Edmonton Food Bank – while the Santas Anonymous toy drive donated $52,507.53 in cash and toys for kids around Edmonton. The Annual Women’s Dinner presented by James H. Brown & Associates, Injury Layers continued to make a major impact in the fight against women’s cancers, with the 2023 event pushing the total raised for the Edmonton Elks Women’s Ovarian Cancer Research Endowment Fund to over $700,000 since its inception in 2007.

The Elks steady partnership with the Stollery Children’s Hospital saw players make visits before every home game, with invites to watch the action at Commonwealth Stadium. They would have joined the 2,330 other fans who were able to take part in Edmonton Elks football through donated tickets. The partnership with the Stollery continued on the field with the EE’s Cleats of Strength initiative that saw players such as Tre Ford, Eugene Lewis, and Kevin Brown team up with kids from the Stollery to design game worn cleats to be auctioned off in support of the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation.

The Green and Gold were a constant presence in the amateur football community in 2023 — organizing events or appearing as guest coaches for the Capital District Minor Football Association, Junior Football, the Indigenous Football Camp, Flag Football, and Super Sports Day.

The efforts weren’t limited to only Edmonton. The Annual Community Tour presented by Tim Hortons saw Elks players spend a week visiting fans in Leduc, Sherwood Park, St. Albert and Spruce Grove. The team met hundreds of fans of the Green and Gold at local Tim Hortons, while also arranging free football camps for the minor football associations in each of their visits. The work for the Elks is already beginning for 2024, with TELUS #EndBullying All-Stars programs already underway.

“Last year, our community initiatives were hugely successful in fostering strong connections and maintaining a positive impact in the communities in and around Edmonton,” said Shelby Marchand, Edmonton Elks Coordinator, Community Relations and Events. “We are excited to continue our team’s legacy heading into our 75th season by engaging in meaningful interactions and contributing to shared growth within our community.”