Impact of Schroeder Foundation Felt Across Canada

CANADA – Thousands of Canadian lives will be impacted thanks to a major increase in funding commitments by The Schroeder Foundation this year.
On the medical front, 2020/2021 marked the founding of the Schroeder Allergy and Immunology Research Institute at McMaster University, the creation of the Schroeder Arthritis Institute and the opening of a Catheterization Lab at The Schroeder BRAIN&HEART Centre at St. Michael’s Hospital. The Foundation also increased the number of scholarships it gives to Winnipeg students, a donation that now totals over $3 million annually. The Foundation contributed to several other multi-year commitments including donations to the Toronto Rehab Institute and Appleby College. In the last year, $22 million was given to initiatives with total multi-year commitments of over $80 million.

The Schroeder Foundation is led by Walter Schroeder, founder of the Dominion Bond Rating Service (sold in 2014 when Schroeder retired). The Foundation is committed to improving health services for Canadians, fostering the arts and enhancing post-secondary education opportunities for vulnerable youth.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has put stress on Canada’s already underfunded medical system, and made things even harder for Canada’s most vulnerable people,” said Walter Schroeder. “We stepped up our giving this year to help fill some of those gaps and help those who are being left behind.”

This year’s most significant new commitment was a $25 million donation to UHN Toronto General and Western Hospitals for the creation of the Schroeder Arthritis Institute. The gift, which will be allocated over the next 10 years, will support the early diagnosis, innovation treatment and prevention of arthritis and other related autoimmune diseases. The institute will treat 80,000 patients annually, and perform upwards of 1,200 joint replacements. It is the leading entity of this kind in Canada. The new commitment is on top of a $3 million donation already made to an osteoarthritis innovation fund.

“We are tremendously proud and tremendously grateful that Walter and Maria have chosen to build on their past support to UHN with this transformational gift,” said Tennys Hanson, Chief Executive Officer of Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation. “This announcement is wonderful news for our clinicians and researchers who will comprise the Schroeder Arthritis Institute.”

The Foundation also committed $10 million over the next 5 years toward the creation of the Schroeder Allergy and Immunology Research Institute at McMaster University, Schroeder’s alma mater. This initiative will allow scientists, clinicians and post-doctoral fellows to conduct groundbreaking research to mitigate the effects of allergies through treatment and prevention.

“Allergies are becoming more prevalent and more severe, especially for young Canadians. And yet, this area is medicine is often overlooked and underfunded,” said Schroeder. “Having watched my grandchildren struggle with allergies, I have seen first hand how life altering they can be. Increased research in this area could alleviate a lot of unnecessary suffering.”

The Foundation is also increasing the number of post-secondary scholarships it provides to students from Winnipeg’s core neighbourhoods.
Students from Winnipeg’s Sisler High School, St. John’s High School and Daniel McIntyre Collegiate Institute receive full tuition scholarships to Red River College and the University of Manitoba thanks to annual contributions from The Schroeder Foundation. Students also receive bursaries throughout the year as a reward for good grades. This year, The Schroeder Foundation partnered with Vancouver Film School to provide 15 full tuition scholarships for students of the Sisler High School CREATE program. 2021 will also mark an increase in the number of scholarships given to students from Daniel McIntyre Collegiate Institute.

The Foundation runs numerous charitable initiatives in Winnipeg, aimed at providing nutritious food for families and educational opportunities for disadvantaged youth. The Foundation operates a food bank outreach program through St. John’s High School, which provides between 130 and 170 food hampers to student families, and employs community service workers to deliver the hampers and work with families to help them overcome barriers to education. It also funds a school cafeteria that provides free breakfast and heavily subsidized lunches for 150 students daily. This year, The Schroeder Foundation stepped up to cover a Winnipeg School Division budget cut that eliminated a $210,000 milk subsidy program. The Foundation’s Winnipeg education initiatives have a budget of over $3 million per year.

Walter Schroeder and his wife Maria were raised in Winnipeg’s core.

“Education is what raised us out of poverty and gave us the opportunity to succeed. We want to pay that forward by removing barriers for others,” said Schroeder. “We are particularly focused on fostering the next generation of Indigenous leaders.”

The Schroeder Foundation is currently collaborating with former Governor General David Johnson’s Rideau Hall Foundation and the University of Winnipeg on a
program aimed at training Indigenous teachers. The Foundation is also working with the Martin Family Initiative Entrepreneurial Program to improve Indigenous graduation rates.

The Schroeder Foundation devotes significant resources to improving health services for all Canadians. In recent years they have also invested heavily in the arts in Newfoundland & Labrador, creating a theatre company to build a new musical celebrating the arts and culture of the province’s people. Some of their most personal efforts, however, have been in their hometown of Winnipeg, where they have created scholarships and other programs that support students in some of the city’s most vulnerable high schools.

For more information and interviews contact:
Ginny Collins
Communications Consultant
gcollins@terrabay.ca
(204) 802 2845

St. John’s High School Sees Highest Ever Graduation, Post-Secondary Enrollment for Indigenous Students

St. John’s High School, located in Winnipeg’s North End, is seeing the highest Indigenous graduation and post-secondary enrollment rates in the school’s 110 year history, thanks in large part to the support of The Schroeder Foundation.

The Foundation supplies post-secondary scholarships, free and subsidized student meals, family meal kits and outreach workers to help ensure students stay in school and reach their full potential. Three years ago, prior to the involvement of The Schroeder Foundation, 16% of St. John’s graduating class pursued a post-secondary education. By 2020, this number had increased to 61%.

“Students now speak openly and often about their desire to seek a post-secondary education. These conversations are changing the culture within our school,” said Douglas Taylor, Principal at St. John’s High School. “Because of the opportunities provided to them by The Schroeder Foundation, students are seeing a way forward – they are daring to dream.”

The Foundation currently provides $655,000 in scholarships and bursaries annually to St. John’s students. It also employs five community outreach staff that work with 80 students and their families. These workers are mindful of the barriers students and their families face, including food insecurity, living wage work scarcities, housing instability, unequal access to preventative healthcare, mental health challenges and the effects of trauma. The workers also deliver 150 meal kits with recipes to the families. The Foundation provides free breakfast for St. John’s students, as well as 75 free lunches – the rest of which are heavily subsidized.

Walter Schroeder, the head of The Schroeder Foundation, grew up in Winnipeg’s Centennial neighbourhood. When visiting St. John’s High School in 2018, he witnessed teachers buying granola bars and apples for hungry students with their own money. It was then that he committed to help reduce food security issues and increase educational opportunities.

“Not all students have the same start in life, but they all deserve the chance to achieve their goals. The Schroeder Foundation is committed to removing barriers for vulnerable students, including those who are making the transition from life on a reserve to an urban high school,” said Schroeder. “Our support is designed to address the complex issues faced by students and their families. The community outreach workers are highly experienced and provide tailored support to help families succeed.”

“The Schroeder Foundation is making a real, tangible difference in our school,” said Principal Taylor. “January 2020 marked the first time St. John’s students in the Provincial Pre-Calculus exams achieved grades in the 90% range, while one Indigenous student achieved 99%. We have more to do, but this is significant.”

The Schroeder Foundation is helping St. Michael’s Hospital break down barriers to health care for people experiencing homelessness.

MAP Centre for Urban Health Solutions at St. Michael’s Hospital is a world-leading research centre dedicated to creating a healthier future for everyone. Through big-picture research and street-level solutions, MAP scientists tackle complex urban health issues, many at the intersection of health and equity. A major focus – one that The Schroeder Foundation has supported over the years – is homelessness.

The Schroeder Foundation has made a major investment to pilot the Homeless Outreach Coordinator program (aka the Navigator program) and break this cycle of illness and hospital readmission. Working in the General Internal Medicine Department, Navigators get to know patients who are homeless or precariously housed while they are in hospital. After the patients are discharged, Navigators help them get to medical appointments, identify essential community health-care and social services, and find a place for patients to recover from their hospitalization. The program has proven to be highly successful, and St. Michael’s is seeking to scale up the program across the hospital and at health-care centres across the country.

And most recently, The Schroeder Foundation is helping MAP director Dr. Stephen Hwang pilot and test a lasting solution to the homelessness crisis: Beyond Housing. His team is working with governmental and community partners to create a system that matches people to housing and community support and health-care services that are tailored to each person’s needs. And to make sure those services are available for as long as the clients need them, they are setting up a long-term case management program specifically designed to promote wellness and recovery, such as trauma-based therapy, health-care navigation and community integration.

The goal is to help people exit permanently from a life of chronic homelessness and improve their overall health and well-being.

Donations can be made directly to: https://maphealth.ca/

The Schroeder Foundation is helping St. Michael’s Hospital stop “Canada’s disease” in its tracks.

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a devastating neurological disorder that affects one in 400 Canadians, the highest prevalence in the world. St. Michael’s Hospital – a leading force in the MS field for the past 40 years, and home to the largest MS clinic in North America – is determined to stop MS in its tracks. This summer, with a major investment from The Schroeder Foundation, it will take a giant step forward when it opens the BARLO MS Centre. St. Michael’s is set to become one of the world’s top centres for MS research, education and patient care.

At the BARLO MS Centre, patients will have access to an infusion innovation centre, an independent living lab where they can learn how to modify their homes, a gymnasium for customized exercise, physiotherapy and high-tech gait analysis, and counselling rooms where patients and their families receive the guidance to help them cope.

Most importantly, the BARLO MS Centre offers what patients need most: one-stop care. Patients no longer have to move from appointment to appointment, repeating their stories over and over again. Now, neurologists, nurses, social workers, neuropsychologists, physio and occupational therapists, and pharmacists will provide care for the patient’s body, mind and life – all in one place.

And because St. Michael’s is home to some of the world’s leading scientists, the BARLO MS Centre will accelerate breakthroughs into the causes and treatments of this intractable disease – and help the 2.8 million people living with MS around the world.

Donations can be made directly to: BARLO MS Centre – St. Michael Hospital (stmichaelsfoundation.com)

No more siloed medicine: The Schroeder BRAIN&HEART Centre at St. Michael’s is pushing the frontiers of integrated care.

The Schroeder Foundation has made a landmark investment of $22.125 million to establish The Schroeder BRAIN&HEART Centre at St. Michael’s Hospital, and usher in a new era of integrated precision medicine.

St. Michael’s is a pioneer in brain and heart care, with an impressive track record of national and world firsts in surgical innovation. The surgeons and physicians there are leaders in minimally-invasive, image-guided techniques, and they are giving people facing the toughest brain and heart challenges options for treatment they never had before, and enabling these patients to recover more quickly, with less pain, and less time spent in hospital. They are, quite simply, giving people back their quality of life – and saving lives.

The experts there also know that the conventional approach to treating brain, heart and vascular disorders as separate is outmoded. Brain and heart are interconnected – what happens in one often affects the other. The vision for The Schroeder BRAIN&HEART Centre is to create a hub for collaboration among these specialists that will revolutionize brain and heart care.

The Schroeder BRAIN&HEART Centre, led by renowned cardiac surgeon Dr. Mark Peterson, has been opening in phases, with full completion scheduled for the latter half of 2021. Funds from the Foundation are supporting the physical transformation of clinical spaces, including larger, state-of-the-art, technologically advanced catheterization labs and a multidisciplinary clinic, a one-stop shop for integrated and holistic care. But that’s not all. Three Schroeder research chairs – in advanced neurovascular interventions, in structural and valve intervention, and for the Centre’s director – will allow St. Michael’s to recruit and support trailblazing and rising star surgeon-scientists, giving them dedicated time to devise new ways of providing inventive, best-in-class care. And The Schroeder Institute for Cardiac and Aortic Surgery will design and test new coordinated care pathways for patients, and train surgical fellows in the range of open, endovascular and hybrid surgical techniques.

As the knowledge and expertise developed in Toronto will be shared around the world, The Schroeder BRAIN&HEART Centre promises to be a catalyst for health-care innovation on a global scale.

Donations can be made directly to: Brain & Heart Care – St. Michael’s Hospital Foundation (stmichaelsfoundation.com)

Campaign for the Walter and Maria Schroeder BRAIN&HEART Centre

Join our $42-million campaign so we can do what no one has done before. We’re creating a centre where the world’s top specialists treat the toughest brain and heart cases — together.

St. Michael’s will soon be Canada’s only hospital that takes an integrated approach to health care for the brain and heart – without the silos that get in the way of the best medicine.

Thanks to the remarkable $19.125-million gift from legendary Canadian philanthropists Walter and Maria Schroeder, we’re building the Walter and Maria Schroeder BRAIN&HEART Centre.

It’s based on the latest medical thinking that the separation between brain and heart is artificial. What happens to one very often impacts the other.

  • A brain aneurysm can stop a heart
  • A heart attack can cause a stroke
  • Degenerative brain diseases like Alzheimer’s share a genetic link with heart disease
  • Though some diseases may show up in only one area, they still affect both the brain and heart

So why are the brain and the heart treated separately?

At St. Michael’s Hospital, they’re not. Unlike other hospitals in Canada, our brain and heart specialists work together to treat patients, and to invent medical tools and procedures that are best for both organs.

When it’s completed, The Walter and Maria Schroeder BRAIN&HEART Centre will have state-of-the-art facilities and equipment, and a space dedicated entirely to medical discovery and invention.

For the first time, care will be structured around the patient – not medicine.

Our campaign is 85 per cent completed. Please help us finish our new centre and lead the brain and heart revolution.

In-Home Dementia Intervention, a program under the direction of Dr. Robin Green and Dr. Kathy McGilton at Toronto Rehab.

The Schroeder Brain Institute will help to deliver new and innovative clinical approaches through the use of artificial intelligence, smart home systems, advanced sensors and robotics in rehabilitation. For patients with dementia, whose progression may be rapid or measured, this adaptability is essential. The Brain Institute will also test the efficacy of smart home systems and advanced sensors to help predict how these therapies may be adapted over time.

Beyond these existing initiatives, the Institute’s national reputation as a nexus for health innovation will create a wealth of opportunities moving forward. To build Canada’s pipeline of health innovators, The Schroeder Brain Institute will also create and implement health innovation education and leadership programs. These programs will be delivered through a variety of vehicles, including interdisciplinary university undergraduate and graduate classes, presentations for health-system leaders and online webinars reaching stakeholders across the country.

Donor to subsidize milk program cut by school division

Donor to subsidize milk program cut by school division

 

Winnipeg Free Press

Posted: 4:00 AM CDT Saturday, Mar. 20, 2021

A city philanthropist will serve up a $210,000 donation to restore a milk-subsidy program drained from Winnipeg School Division’s budget this month.

“The cut demonstrates a total disregard for the division’s most vulnerable students,” Walter Schroeder said in a news release Friday. “Instead of making cuts from the top, the division has chosen to cut a program that directly affects the well-being of children and youth.”

The $210,000 donation from the Schroeder Foundation will restore the subsidy program, which provides 650-ml cartons of milk to elementary and junior high students for 25 cents. The subsidy was eliminated on March 9 when the division announced its 2021-22 budget.

Schroeder, who grew up in Winnipeg and attended Dufferin School, said the issue of food security in the city’s poorest neighbourhoods is close to his heart, and he recalled school milk deliveries where students would pay a nickel for a pint of milk.

“I remember the clink of glass bottles, the deliveries from the milkman, the importance of fresh milk to growing kids. My mother would give me a nickel to pay for the milk, but I could see not everyone received some,” he said.

“There were families even poorer than ours. The truth is, you can’t learn if you’re hungry. Subsidies like these go a long way in supplementing a child’s diet and helping families who want the best for their kids.”

Schroeder founded the Dominion Bond Rating Service, then sold the company in 2014, allowing him to focus on philanthropy.

His charitable foundation funds a wide variety of initiatives in Winnipeg, and throughout Canada, aimed at providing nutritious food for families and educational opportunities for disadvantaged youth.

It operates a food bank at St. John’s High School in the North End, which typically delivers 100 food hampers to the families of students in need, a number that soared to 170 in the early days of the pandemic.

At St. John’s, the foundation has not only funded the food bank — buying groceries from Downtown Family Foods — but provided bursaries, scholarships and a state-of-the-art cafeteria that provides free breakfasts and nutritious lunches that cost a maximum of $2.50.

It currently provides more than 700 scholarships and bursaries, as well as equipment and other supports to students at three Winnipeg high schools, with donations totaling more than $3 million annually.

The news release said Schroeder became aware of food insecurity at St. John’s during a visit in 2018 when he saw teachers buying granola bars and apples out of their own pocket for hungry students.

“He decided to buy these items for students through the foundation and, throughout the years, has taken this offer much further,” it said, noting the foundation will provide 40 full, four-year scholarships for high school students to the University of Manitoba and 40 to Red River College this year.

Dementia Rehab, the Schroeder Brain Institute will target specific areas of rehabilitation

Dementia Rehab, a program under the direction of Dr. Alex Mihailidis, Dr. Andrea Iaboni and Dr. Kathy McGilton at Toronto Rehab.

The Schroeder Brain Institute will target specific areas of rehabilitation, which include activities of daily living, language and communication, social interaction, behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia, pain and physical disability. It is a fundamentally optimistic approach to dementia care that enables patients to thrive within their respective environments.

Advancing Innovation through the Centre for Neurotechnological Innovation to Application (“CRANIA”)

Advancing Innovation through the Centre for Neurotechnological Innovation to Application (“CRANIA”), a program under the direction of Dr. Milos Popovic at Toronto Rehab, and Dr. Taufik Valiante at Toronto Western Hospital.

The aim for CRANIA is to be the recognized leader in an exciting new field of medicine that restores or improves patients’ function by correcting abnormal electrical or chemical activity in the brain. More specifically, CRANIA’s contribution to The Schroeder Brain Institute will be to engineer brain-computer interfaces and other technological tools that can restore neural networks and improve function for many neurological disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy and stroke, to name a few.

Under the leadership of Dr. Alex Mihailidis, CRANIA will also develop technologies to support Dementia Rehab and In-Home Dementia Intervention (See Programs B and C below) at Toronto Rehab. These technologies will include advanced robotics, wearable and environmental instrumentation, and other technologies using artificial intelligence.