Canadian singer, songwriter and record producer Abel Tesfaye, better known as The Weeknd, has donated $500,000 CAD to the Scarborough Health Network’s COVID-19 Emergency Fund through sales of his line of ‘XO’ face masks. Born in Toronto and raised in Scarborough, the Grammy-winning artist has been raising awareness and funds for COVID-19 relief since the beginning of the pandemic, matching every dollar raised from the sale of his masks.
“I was raised in Scarborough and felt it was important to give back to the community that raised me during the hard times of this pandemic,” said Tesfaye.
Situated in one of the most diverse communities in Canada, the Scarborough Health Network (SHN) spans three hospitals and eight satellite sites. SHN’s COVID-19 Emergency Fund was established to support frontline staff and doctors and address urgent equipment needs, such as ventilators, ICU beds, ECG monitors and personal protective equipment (PPE). According to a press release, more than 3,500 community donors have contributed to the fund, which now totals more than $2.7 million.
“Our vibrant and diverse community represents the best of Canada, and we are fortunate to have ambassadors like The Weeknd in our corner,” said Elizabeth Buller, President and CEO of SHN, in a statement. “This gift will help our community hospitals continue to deliver exceptional care for the people of Scarborough in the wake of COVID-19, and demonstrates to our courageous staff and physicians that their critical work does not go unnoticed or unappreciated.”
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