One of Canada’s largest media and technology companies has announced measures aimed at minimizing the pandemic’s disruption to vulnerable women and children.

Rogers said it is donating smart phones and six months of free service in partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada and Samsung to ensure people can keep their critical connections.

“These one-to-one mentoring relationships are at the heart of the Big Brothers Big Sisters program. Our ‘bigs’ are a source of continuity and comfort in the lives of our ‘littles’ – which is more important than ever during this time of disruption,” said Leanne Nicolle, president and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Toronto.

Rogers says it is also partnering with Women’s Shelters Canada to raise awareness of the services available for women who need them, through ads on the company’s popular media web sites. The company will also provide “urgent digital tools and support” to shelters, it says.

“We are experiencing an increase in domestic violence right now as Canadians across the country are struggling to deal with the impact of COVID-19,” said Lise Martin, executive director of Women’s Shelters Canada. “One of our urgent needs is to let women who are experiencing abuse know that you are not alone, it’s not your fault, and there is someone you can reach out to, day or night. We are so thankful to Rogers for stepping up to help us get this message to women who may not know that shelters remain open and can offer safety planning through their 24/7 crisis lines.”

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Rogers last week announced a national awareness campaign to help Food Banks Canada raise $150 million during the COVID-19 crisis.

“This public-health crisis compels all of us to take special care of those who need our help more than ever before,” said Joe Natale, president and CEO of Rogers.



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