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Air Traffic Controllers Help Fly Canadian Kids to Healthcare

Largest ever employee fundraising event for Hope Air raises $100,000 for free flights

TORONTO, ONTARIO -- (Marketwired) -- 07/23/14 -- NAV CANADA employees in Toronto and across the country - spearheaded by Air Traffic Controllers - have combined efforts to donate a total of $100,000 to support Hope Air. The donation will fly children from across Canada to desperately needed healthcare that isn't available in own community.

A ceremonial cheque was presented today to Doug Keller-Hobson, Hope Air Executive Director, and to the Hickey Family, Hope Air clients from St. John's NL, at a ceremony at the NAV CANADA Area Control Centre (ACC) in Toronto. The Hickey family's two young boys were in Toronto for hospital treatments.

The sum of $50,000 was raised by NAV CANADA Controllers and other employees through the 26th Annual Toronto ATC Charity Golf Tournament and related fundraising events. This amount was matched by the Company, making it the largest donation in Hope Air history as a result of an employee fundraiser.

The golf tournament was held on June 12, 2014 at the Legends on the Niagara Golf Course. Penny Reid, Air Traffic Control Supervisor and this year's event coordinator, thanked the team of volunteers and sponsors for helping to make the tournament such a success.

"Hope Air is a wonderful example of the spirit of kindness and generosity demonstrated by different sectors of the aviation industry," said Reid. "As Controllers, we have many occasions to communicate with Hope Air's volunteer pilots so we have a strong sense of the admirable work they do. We're glad to help them get to their destinations safely and efficiently of course, but we're also proud to help the organization financially."

Said Doug Keller-Hobson, Hope Air Executive Director: "Cindy and Corey Hickey, along with their young boys Jayden and Logan, bring home to all of us the mission of Hope Air and the importance of the support from NAV CANADA employees.

"The Hickey family regularly need to travel over 2,000 kilometres to SickKids Hospital for treatment of Logan's rare autoimmune deficiency. Big brother Jayden is also receiving preventative treatments for the same disease. Together with our colleagues and friends at NAV CANADA, we are pleased to be there in this family's time of need."

The $100,000 cheque was presented by Ms. Reid along with John Urban, NAV CANADA General Manager, Toronto Flight Information Region (FIR).

"Hope Air is a great example of how aviation can make a difference in the lives of people in need - getting them to the medical care they so urgently require, safely and efficiently," said Mr. Urban. "That is why our controllers decided that the Annual Toronto ATC Charity Golf Tournament should be focused on Hope Air. This year, our people simply outdid themselves."

Photo available - DOWNLOAD (Caption: NAV CANADA Air Traffic Controllers presented a $100,000 donation to Hope Air on Wednesday at the Company's Toronto Area Control Centre. From left: Doug Keller-Hobson, Hope Air Executive Director; Penny Reid, Air Traffic Control Supervisor and fundraising organizer; Hope Air clients the Hickey family of St. John's (Cindy, Corey and sons Jayden and Logan); and John Urban, General Manager, Toronto Flight Information Region. The contribution - combining employee donations with a Company match - is the largest-ever donation to Hope Air as the result of an employee fundraiser, spearheaded by Air Traffic Controllers through their Annual ATC Charity Golf Tournament.)

Video clip available - DOWNLOAD

Hope Air is the unique Canadian national charity which arranges free flights for low-income Canadians who need non-emergency healthcare not available in their local communities. Air transportation helps reduce the emotional, financial and physical stress that individuals and families face while coping with a serious illness. Almost half of all Clients flying with Hope Air are children. In 2013, Hope Air and its commercial airline partners and donors provided 7,090 free flights to Canadians from coast-to-coast. Since its start in 1986, the charity has provided over 85,000 flights.

NAV CANADA is the country's private sector civil air navigation services provider. With operations from coast to coast to coast, NAV CANADA provides air traffic control, flight information, weather briefings, aeronautical information services, airport advisory services and electronic aids to navigation.

Doug Keller-Hobson
Executive Director Hope Air
416.222.6335, ext 228

Michelle Bishop
Director, Government and Public Affairs
Media Information Line: 888-562-8226

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