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Pledges wanted: 2022 CTV Lions Children’s Christmas Telethon

Help give the gift of Christmas to tens of thousands of children this holiday season

The 2022 CTV Lions children’s Christmas telethon will celebrate 74 years this Dec. 3.

You can watch the telethon and enjoy the entertainment from 2:00 to 4:30 p.m. online and from 4:30 to 11:00 p.m. live on CTV television stations and CTV satellite.

The 2021 telethon was an exceptional year, with people from 32 different countries tuning in. The Lions gave out 18,000 toys, donated money to several local charities, and collected over $320,000 in donations, said Lion Sam J Khoury, from the Minnow Lake Lions Club and chairperson of the CTV-Lions Children Christmas Telethon.

“Each year, we have seen an increase in the amount of money raised at the telethon, but at the same time, there has been an increase in the cost of buying the toys and running the telethon.”

“At present, a committee is formed to find ways of spending whatever excess funds are raised at the telethon if and when they become available. Once it is agreed by the coordinating council of Lions Clubs in the Sudbury area that the money is spent on something to benefit children.”

It takes time and teamwork

But it takes a lot of time and effort. Khoury has been involved with the Lions for “only 35 years,” he said. And with the telethon for 17. He said preparation is huge.

Throughout the year, he and his fellow lions are busy collecting “genuinely needy” referral forms from local not-for-profits and churches before placing their toy order in the spring to have them shipped in November.

The shipments come gift-wrapped with stickers identifying the gender and age range. From there, the lions and other volunteers will group gifts based on each needy family adding their address for delivery. 

From Thessalon Ontario, to Iron Bridge, Blind River, Elliot Lake and most of Manitoulin Island are covered for toys. The following towns and cities are supplied with toys, food and clothes:

  • Sudbury,
  • Azilda,
  • Chelmsford,
  • Onaping Falls,
  • Capreol,
  • Garson,
  • Valley East,
  • Coniston,
  • Wahnapitae,
  • Markstay,
  • St. Charles,
  • Warren
  • and the Noel Ville French River area

In between all of this, Lions are meeting to pull it all together: the gifts, numbers of needy families, the draw prize, telethon-day event details, sponsors, entertainment, and the list goes on.

Help wanted

Khoury would like to thank all the people, groups and companies who participate in helping the telethon. “It's a wonderful thing,” he said.

“The Sudbury area people are so great. The minute we come on the telephone, people want to help the families and the kids.”

Many local companies sponsor the event through donations, goods, services, or volunteers. A major sponsor this year is Tim Hortons through smile cookie sales. 

Sponsors are recognized with their company logo on the sponsor's page with a link to their site, with larger contributions presented live on TV during the telethon. 

And all donations over $100 will get entered into a draw for two plane tickets flying anywhere in North America, Hawaii or the Caribbean — A generous donation is made by the Air Canada Foundation. 

Khoury said he hopes people will sit and watch the telethon again this year. The event raised more donations in the past two years as families watched from their living rooms during the pandemic.

“You know, sometimes, I can’t even answer the phones when a call comes in when you hear mothers or fathers crying over the phone for their kids. You don't know how it is until you go into it and feel it.”

“But, we enjoy every second when you see those families receiving those toys. It's something different. They give you a feeling in your body. The feeling is completely different.”

You can mail your donations to the following address: CTV Northern Ontario, 699 Frood Road, Sudbury, Ont. P3C 5A3.

Or, you can drop donations off at the All Nations Church, 414 St Raphael St, Sudbury.

You can also make a monthly donation here.

Live entertainment will be downtown at Place des Arts du Grand Sudbury. Khoury invites people to stop by on Dec. 3 to watch, sing Christmas carols or drop off donations into the “wish bowl.”