CHEO Telethon raises $7.375 million for CHEO

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The president of CHEO says the generosity of the community during the COVID-19 pandemic “touches our heart.”

The 37th CHEO Telethon raised $7.375 million to support patient care and research at CHEO.

“It’s awesome, thank you everyone,” said CHEO President and CEO Alex Munter at the end of the CHEO Telethon on CTV Ottawa.

Munter notes the CHEO Telethon is “so crucial” to the day-to-day operations at CHEO.

“It’s crucial to cutting-edge research that wouldn’t happen if it weren’t for community support. The life-saving equipment, key programs all across CHEO.”

It is clear that #CHEO has touched so many hearts in our community. You are amazing! Through your generous donations, we have raised $7,375,767 this year through the #CHEOtelethon. Thank you for giving our kids the chance to live their best life and being a #hero4CHEO. pic.twitter.com/ACxHucTzzE

— CHEO Ottawa (@CHEO) June 7, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic forced changes to the CHEO Telethon. The CHEO Foundation held a two-week virtual telethon leading up to the CHEO Telethon on CTV Ottawa on Sunday.

“There aren’t really words. Every telethon for me it really touches my heart to hear the stories, to see the commitment, to see people stepping forward,” said Munter when asked about how the community stepped up to donate during the pandemic.

“The team at CHEO is able to take care of our region’s kids because of the community, because people log on or dial in and make that contribution. Not just me, but for every single staff member, physician, volunteer, everyone part of the CHEO community today it really touches our heart, especially given the circumstances of the pandemic.”

Ottawa Senators forward Brady Tkachuk called in to donate $3,000 to CHEO during the telethon. 

The theme for the CHEO telethon this year was "Stronger Together" during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a statement, CHEO Foundation President and CEO Kevin Keohane said, “The CHEO Telethon on CTV continues to be about the care and research at CHEO made possible by our community, the amazing children and youth who rely on CHEO and the passionate and skillful people who care for them.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded all of us about the importance of good health, of always being prepared for the unexpected and the virtual importance of research.”

The COVID-19 pandemic forced the cancellation of more than 150 fundraising events for CHEO and the CHEO Telethon, while several in-store fundraising campaigns were postponed or cancelled. 

Donations to the CHEO Telethon support life-saving treatment, state-of-the-art medical equipment and ground-breaking research.

So many people hurting, so many fund-raising events cancelled, yet still so much generosity for @CHEO's kids: over $7.3M donated at #CHEOtelethon today. Thank you everyone for caring so much. Every donor is truly a #Hero4CHEO.#ottnews pic.twitter.com/frf9C2QSRi

— Alex Munter (@AlexMunter) June 7, 2020