August 13, 2020– A&W Canada has teamed up with Christine Sinclair, two-time Olympic medalist and Canadian women’s national soccer team captain, for the fourth consecutive year to lead the 12th annual Burgers to Beat MS Day on Thursday, August 20. On this day, $2 from every Teen Burger® sold across the country will be donated to the MS Society of Canada to help support those living with multiple sclerosis (MS).
With the safety of Canadians a top priority, A&W Canada has created the first-ever Take Out Burgers to Beat MS campaign, ensuring Canadians can make a valuable and safe contribution from anywhere. The annual fundraising initiative is very close to the hearts of A&W’s franchisees across the country; it was their decision to launch this special 2020 edition of the campaign, despite the business and personal challenges they have faced as a result of COVID-19. While this year’s campaign looks slightly different, the same overarching goal exists: to work towards achieving a world free of MS.
Leading up to August 20th, Canadians can support the campaign by rounding up their bill with any purchase, by making an online donation at BurgersToBeatMS.ca, or by adding a donation when ordering through A&W’s mobile app. New this year, A&W will also match the value of the Burgers to Beat MS e-gift cards purchased now until August 20th as a corporate donation to the MS Society*.
Christine Sinclair has a personal connection to this annual A&W fundraiser, as her mother, Sandi, was diagnosed with MS more than 30 years ago. In honour of her mother and the other 77,000 Canadians living with MS, Christine is rallying Canadians to come together to make a difference, raising much-needed funds and awareness for MS.
“This is my fourth year as Burgers to Beat MS Team Captain and I’m very grateful the campaign is moving forward in such a creative way,” says Christine Sinclair. “As a Canadian, I’m proud to lead the charge on this important fundraising initiative to make a difference for people, like my mom, who live with MS and need support now more than ever. Through this campaign, we aim to rally together as a nation to drive awareness and support of this important cause!”
A&W Canada hopes to raise more than $1 million for the MS Society through this year’s campaign, bringing the campaign total to more than $16 million raised in support of the MS Society of Canada. Donations will help the MS Society of Canada support Canadians living with MS and to fund research, programs and services, and advocacy efforts that are fundamental to improving the quality of life for Canadians living with and affected by this disease.
“One of the most inspiring things we’ve seen these last few months is a desire from Canadians to give back in their local communities, and our franchisees have been real leaders,” says Susan Senecal, President and CEO, A&W Food Services of Canada Inc. “Our franchisees and their restaurant teams are bringing momentum to this year’s Burgers to Beat MS campaign with their commitment to supporting their local communities - it was important to them that we went ahead with an exciting and accessible campaign to raise awareness and important funds for the MS Society.”
A&W proudly serves burgers all day, every day, and will donate $2 from every Teen Burger® sold on Take Out Burgers to Beat MS Day on Thursday, August 20th to the MS Society of Canada. While in-store celebrations in local communities are not possible this year, guests are encouraged to celebrate at home with their close family and friends, to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Operating with the safety of Canadians in mind, participating A&W restaurants are offering the following ways for Canadians to purchase a Teen Burger®:
- ● A&W Mobile Ordering: Order a Teen Burger® ahead and prepay using A&W’s mobile app. Simply choose a location that is convenient and select drive-thru or front door pickup (where available).
- ● Drive-Thru: A&W restaurants with drive-thrus are open, with the option to order as normal, or order ahead using A&W’s mobile app for contactless payment.
- ● Delivery: Teen Burgers® will be delivered through A&W’s third-party delivery partners, including Uber Eats, DoorDash and SkipTheDishes. Delivery partners vary from restaurant to restaurant.
Canada has one of the highest rates of MS in the world, with over 77,000 Canadians living with this disease. Approximately 11 Canadians are diagnosed with MS every day and women are three times more likely than men to be diagnosed. The current health crisis has impacted all Canadians, and for those affected by MS it adds additional concern and stress on top of an already challenging disease.
MS is a complex and unpredictable disease, affecting each person differently. Common symptoms include fatigue, dizziness, (muscle) weakness, impaired sensation, vision loss, mood changes, and cognitive impairment. It is the most common neurological disease affecting young adults in Canada. The cause of MS remains a mystery and, while there is currently no cure, researchers are learning more each day about what causes the disease and ways to prevent it.
“Canadians affected by MS face challenges including barriers in accessing appropriate care supports and financial difficulties. COVID-19 only intensifies these circumstances and adds stress to both physical and mental health,” says Pamela Valentine, President and CEO, MS Society of Canada. “We are hopeful that we can work together to help improve the lives of tens of thousands of Canadians affected by MS at a time when they require support more than ever. We have fostered a strong partnership with A&W over the years to support communities helping communities, allowing us to improve the lives of Canadians affected by MS. We are incredibly proud of the resilience of this partnership and our ability to run with this year’s campaign.”
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. A leader in the QSR industry, we believe that sourcing simple, great-tasting ingredients, farmed with care is the right thing to do. Our brand, our restaurants, and our people are known for being innovators who champion and embrace change. We serve Canadians coast to coast with nearly 1,000 restaurants across the country. For more information, please visit aw.ca.
About multiple sclerosis and the MS Society of Canada
Canada has one of the highest rates of multiple sclerosis in the world. On average, 11 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. The MS Society 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 mssociety.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 the MS Society on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
** A&W Canada Home Office will match proceeds of A&W E-Gift Card and donate up to $20,000 to the MS Society of Canada.
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