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From left: Toronto Maple Leafs defenceman TJ Brodie, Amber Brodie, President and CEO of A&W Food Services of Canada Inc., Susan Senecal and President and CEO of MS Canada, Dr. Pamela Valentine celebrate Burgers to Beat MS Day on August 17th, 2023. (CNW Group/A&W Food Services of Canada Inc.)

National Fundraiser has donated more than $20M to Multiple Sclerosis Research Through the Support of Canadian Burger Lovers

VANCOUVER, BC, Aug. 30, 2023 /CNW/ - A&W Canada proudly announces that its 15th Annual Burgers to Beat MS Day, in support of MS Canada, raised an incredible $1.6M. For 15 years, Canadians have rallied together for this important initiative to help people living with multiple sclerosis (MS) and have raised more than $20M!

On August 17, A&W donated $2 from every Teen Burger sold across the country to MS Canada, to directly and positively impact the lives of Canadians living with MS. Up to a month earlier, Canadians across the country could also donate online in any amount or round up any A&W purchase.

"For 15 years, Canadians have generously united in support of Burgers to Beat MS Day," says Susan Senecal, President and CEO of A&W Food Services of Canada Inc. "Raising 1.6M will continue to fund vital MS Canada programming and resources to foster a world free of MS. We look forward to continuing this powerful initiative to make the mission a reality."

The annual fundraising initiative is very close to the hearts of A&W's franchisees and restaurant staff across the country, and this campaign wouldn't be possible without their ongoing support. Since the campaign's first year in 2008, A&W restaurants in Canadian towns large and small have been drumming up unique support for the cause to celebrate this 15-year milestone. In 2023, there were some standout activities. In Winnipeg, the Portage Avenue A&W built a stage and brought together local musicians to perform live music. In the neighbouring province of Saskatchewan, Humboldt's A&W went all out with visits from the Great A&W Root Bear, live entertainment from Regina artist JJ Voss, a raffle and car show. In Amherst, Nova Scotia, the community met at the local A&W hosting a yard and bake sale, to show their support for Burgers to Beat MS.

Beating MS One Assist at a Time

To unite Canadians to participate in this year's Burgers to Beat MS drive, A&W has partnered with Toronto Maple Leafs defenceman, TJ Brodie and his wife Amber, who has been living with MS for seven years. Despite this life-changing diagnosis, Amber continues to remain positive and finds strength in the support of the program to progress valuable research.

"Even though MS has no known cure, I am confident that one day, we will live in a world free of MS," says Amber Brodie. "The compassion from Canadians I have experienced through Burgers to Beat MS has been overwhelming, and I thank everyone for their generosity."

"It was an honour and a privilege to help A&W Canada and MS Canada spread the word about the prevalence of MS and how it has personally affected our lives," says TJ Brodie. "Based on the results of this year's Burgers to Beat MS, Canadians are not only cheering from the sidelines, but playing a pivotal role in advancing research and treatments."

The Battle Continues

Burgers to Beat MS has funded an astounding $20M to date for valuable research, support and services that are fundamental to changing the lives of people affected by MS. But the battle against MS is far from over. Twelve Canadians, on average, are still diagnosed every day as Canada as one of the highest rates in the world, per capita.

"Our long-standing and valued relationship with A&W's Burgers to Beat MS initiative has helped to make major advancements for the care of Canadians living with MS," says Dr. Pamela Valentine, President and CEO of MS Canada. "Year after year, we are grateful for the unwavering support Canadians have shown the MS community, raising funds that directly contribute to supporting programs, wellness initiatives and achieving progress through state-of-the-art research to better understand MS and treatments."

For more information on how you can donate to MS Canada, visit its Donation Portal.

About A&W Canada 

A&W is proud to be a Canadian company – 100% Canadian owned and operated, and one of the most trusted brands in the country. We believe in helping our customers take small, simple actions for the good of people and the planet. From serving 100% grass-fed beef, to offering reusables, and fundraising in support of Canadians living with multiple sclerosis, we strive to make a positive impact in all the communities we operate in across Canada. Home of Canada's Best Tasting Burgers, we serve Canadians coast to coast with over 1,000 restaurants across the country. For more information, please visit aw.ca.

About Multiple Sclerosis and MS Canada 

Canada has one of the highest rates of multiple sclerosis in the world. On average, 12 Canadians are diagnosed every day. MS is a chronic autoimmune disease of the central nervous system (brain, spinal cord). It is considered an episodic disease meaning that the severity and duration of illness and disability can vary and are often followed by periods of wellness. Most people are diagnosed with MS between the ages of 20 and 49 and the unpredictable effects of the disease will last for the rest of their lives. MS Canada provides information, support and advocacy to people affected by MS, and funds research to find the cause and cure for the disease, bringing us closer to a world free of MS. Please visit mscanada.ca or call 1-800-268-7582 for more information, to get involved, or to support Canadians affected by MS by making a donation.

Join the conversation and connect with the MS community online. Find MS Canada onTwitterInstagram or like our page on Facebook.

Taffin Sekulin
Strategic Objectives
C: 416 366 7735 x0268

SOURCE A&W Food Services of Canada Inc.