Foundation for Burned Children
This is a reprint of the article
in this issue:
passion of two men is being felt by burned children in Canada Gilles
Mercier and Francois Sourdif's (who passed away on Dec. 28th 2014)
vision for helping burned children became a reality in April I 997 and
now its the victims of these tragic events who reap the rewards their
tireless efforts efforts.
We pay for anything a child needs involving post-hospital
care." said these two co-founding Directors of the TOMA Foundation for Burned
Children. "Payments made by the Foundation are made exclusively and directly to
suppliers of goods and services for the young patients rather through any administrative
In order to consider the realisation and continuity of
its national charitable programs, TOMA must obtain and maintain an annual minimum of $
250,000 and is well on its way to obtaining it. The first year (6 months) total reached
$56,200 in 1998 the number climbed to $222,000 and last year reached $218,200. The co-
founding directors are convinced of reaching their goal of $250,000 in the near future.
The inspiration to start TOMA begun when Mercier, was
designing a web site for a Quebec company and stumbled across a website for bum
"I don't have children but my goddaughter
(Marie-Philippe, whose first name forms the MA of TOMA. The "TO" part of TOMA
comes from the name "Tommy", who is Francois Sourdif's grandson.) was a toddler
and I started wondering about what was out there if something happened to her." he
said "Where would she go? What would she do? There was little united support
structure for these children in Canada. Once they are out of the hospital they are on
The two men soon realised the inherent lack of support
for these children and then came the final straw.
"You take one of the burned kids in your arms and it
is game over," said Mercier. "Spend just an hour in public with a burned child
and you'll understand everything."
The non-profit, federally registered organisation, which
started in Quebec and expanded into Ontario is now considering making inroads into New Brunswick.
"There are some strong organisations out in western
Canada that support this cause so we will concentrate on areas where there is the greatest
need," he said.
TOMA now has several other full and part-time agents who
are trained to provide full answers to all questions that come up at the venues across the
"We make sure every dollar of official donations
goes directly to the child's welfare since we are accountable," said Mercier.
"We even go to various corporate suppliers we are using and ask for a discount - for
— the kids. We’ve learned you have to squeeze and shake to stretch the money.
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