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The Mikey Network Makes Unprecedented $500,000 Commitment to Place Mikey Defibrillators in All Peel Board Schools

April 25, 2014

The Mikey Network is on a mission to make life-saving automated external
defibrillators readily accessible in every school across Ontario.

Heathwood Homes, which founded The Mikey Network, presented a cheque for $160,000 to fund the first year of operations for the Mikey Young At Heart program across the Peel board. Shown (L-R) Chairman of The Mikey Network and President of Heathwood Homes Hugh Heron; Mississauga Mayor Hazel McCallion; The Mikey Network student ambassador Emily Herbert; Peel District School Board Chair Janet McDougald; Director of The Mikey Network and COO Heathwood Homes Bob Finnigan; Peel District School Board Director of Education Tony Pontes; MPP Mississauga East-Cooksville Dipika Damerla; MP Mississauga-Streetsville Brad Butt and Applewood Heights Secondary School Principal Marcel Giraldi. (Photo:Business Wire)

As part of The Mikey Young At Heart program, designed to place automated
external defibrillators – called MIKEYs – across Ontario schools, Hugh
Heron, Chairman of The Mikey Network and President of Toronto-based
Heathwood Homes, announced an unprecedented commitment to place MIKEYs
in the Peel District School Board’s 250 schools and buildings.

Bob Finnigan, COO Heathwood Homes, which founded The Mikey Network,
presented a cheque for $160,000 to fund the first year of operations for
the Mikey Young At Heart program across the Peel board. Heathwood’s
donation kick-starts the wider campaign to raise funds for the special
initiative, which will cost $500,000. The financial commitment is the
largest single gift of its kind in North America.

Heron also used the event to issue a bold challenge to school boards
across Ontario to provide funding to install a MIKEY device in every
school in the province. “We believe that it should be mandatory to
install a defibrillator in schools, just as it is to have fire
extinguishers available,” said Heron. While ambitious, Heron feels the
goal is achievable and will save lives by putting devices within reach
during an emergency.

The announcement—at Mississauga’s Applewood Heights Secondary School,
which recently welcomed its first MIKEY defibrillator—marks another
accomplishment for The Mikey Young At Heart program. The initiative will
provide coverage to approximately 170,000 students and school employees,
and hundreds of thousands of people attending after-school programs
across Peel.

To date, the Mikey Young At Heart program has placed more than 200
MIKEYs in elementary and secondary schools across the Greater Toronto
Area—31 in Peel board schools—all while creating public awareness and
providing education about heart-healthy lifestyles.

The goal is to minimize fatalities or long-term complications from
Sudden Cardiac Arrest. Approximately 40,000 incidents of Sudden Cardiac
Arrest occur in Canada each year, one every 12 minutes. A significant
percentage of incidents occur in otherwise healthy young people.

“We’re thrilled to be working with the Peel District School Board to
install MIKEYs across the region’s public schools, all while providing
greater peace of mind to parents, teachers, administrators and
students,” Heron said. “After seeing a close friend pass away from
Sudden Cardiac Arrest, we made a pledge to provide the Canadian public
with the necessary tools to save lives. This announcement moves us one
step closer to achieving that goal.”

The Mikey Network was founded in 2003, following the sudden passing of
Heathwood Homes partner Michael Salem. Had there been a defibrillator
available where he was golfing at that time, Salem might have been
saved. In Canada, up to 85 per cent of cardiac arrests occur at home or
in public places.

Since inception, The Mikey Network has raised over $3 million, placed
more than 1,500 life-saving MIKEYs in public places across Canada,
trained more than 12,000 people in CPR/AED and saved 19 lives, including
three students saved by MIKEYs in Toronto high schools.

“We know that immediate bystander CPR and early defibrillation allows
victims of cardiac arrest a much better chance for survival. I am
delighted that the Mikey Young At Heart program chose Peel for this
generous donation of defibrillators. Peel’s residents will benefit from
this life saving device,” said Emil Kolb, Peel Regional Chair and Chief
Executive Officer.

“For parents, nothing is more important than their child’s health and
well-being. At the Peel board, that’s our top priority too,” said Janet
McDougald, chair of the Peel board.

“This significant donation from The Mikey Network is an impressive step
forward to ensure a safer learning environment for our students,” said
Tony Pontes, director of education at the Peel board. “We want to do
everything we can to make sure students, staff and visitors are safe in
our buildings.”

“Over the past decade, The Mikey Network has done incredible work to
boost awareness of cardiac issues and healthy living,” Mississauga Mayor
Hazel McCallion said. “I believe the Network’s remarkable donation to
the Peel District School Board will only further that work, making our
schools some of the safest in North America.”

“With their generous community investment, The Mikey Network is helping
to care for and protect thousands of students, staff and administrators
in Brampton and throughout Peel Region,” Mayor Susan Fennell said. “I
want to also recognize the leadership of The Mikey Network for their
unwavering commitment to promote heart-healthy lifestyles, with services
like The Mikey Young At Heart School Defibrillator Program,” she added.

Said Caledon Mayor Marolyn Morrison, “On behalf of the residents of
Caledon, I would like to sincerely thank The Mikey Network for this
generous contribution to the safety and wellbeing of our youth. This is
a remarkable program that saves lives and we are very proud that this
initiative will take place within Peel schools.”

Installation of MIKEY defibrillators across Peel board schools commenced
in February, with the rollout slated for completion in 2017.

To date, Heathwood has built over 2,500 homes in Peel Region and later
in 2014, will introduce MeadowGreen, a new residential community of 80
homes in Brampton. The buyer of each Heathwood MeadowGreen home will
have a MIKEY defibrillator installed in a Peel school in their name.

To donate, or for more information, visit www.mikeynetwork.com

The Mikey Network, founded in 2003,
is a registered Canadian charity working to create public awareness and
provide education about heart healthy lifestyles. To date, over 1,500
MIKEY defibrillators have been placed across Canada, and 19 lives have
been saved. The Mikey Network was named for Mike Salem, a valued partner
at Heathwood Homes and The Heron Group who experienced sudden cardiac
arrest and died on a golf course in 2002. Other Mikey Network programs
include: Mikey’s Kids – The Mikey At Home Program, Mikey On the GO,
Mikey Cops Are Tops and The Mikey’s Young At Heart School Defibrillator
which has to date saved three students and placed over 200
MIKEYs in schools including the Toronto District School Board, Halton
District School Board, Halton Catholic District School Board and
Limestone District School Board. Visit www.mikeynetwork.com.

Heathwood Homes—one of the Greater
Toronto Area’s leading builders of new home communities—provides its
customers with the feeling they’re “Home at Last®,” from
the time they drive into their neighbourhood, to the moment they step
through their front door. The company has built its reputation for
quality brick-by-brick over three decades by providing industry-leading
customer service, and enjoying a level of success derived directly from
the skills of its experienced construction personnel and hands-on
management team. Heathwood Homes’ passion for workmanship is reflected
in both the design and construction of every new home that bears its
Visit www.heathwood.com.

The Peel board is Canada’s
largest school board outside of Toronto. It serves 153,000 kindergarten
to grade 12 students in 242 schools located in Brampton, Caledon and
Mississauga. For more information, visit the board’s website at www.peelschools.org.

Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available: http://www.businesswire.com/multimedia/home/20140423006808/en/

Article source: http://ca.finance.yahoo.com/news/mikey-network-makes-unprecedented-500-211900860.html

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