The 16th edition of the Soirée des Grands Philanthropes was held on September 26th in Montreal. A total of 700 guests were gathered to pay tribute to an exceptional man, Mr. Louis Audet, Executive Chairman of the Board of Cogeco.
The Windsor Station’s Salle des pas perdus was transformed into an elegant, refined venue enhanced with splendid floral arrangements, thus creating a most harmonious atmosphere. The gourmet menu developed by chefs Maxime Delmont and Baptiste Peupion (Chef at the Rosélys and Executive Chef at the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth respectively) delighted the guests’ taste buds.
The most touching moment of the evening was the vibrant testimony given by a young adult who completed his program 10 years ago:
“I had dropped out of school and I had no intention of going back. I used drugs to live and I lived to use drugs… I was in juvenile detention when I contacted Portage. At first, I didn’t trust anyone, but over time, I was able to open to others. No one judged me and they loved me until I learned to love myself. My loved ones slowly regained confidence in me. Portage allowed me to achieve my goals, and I am now a third-year law student. Without Portage’s help, I might have never regained control but as you can see, it changed my life.”
The musical performance by pianist Philippe Prud’homme, young virtuoso from Jeunesses Musicales Canada (JMC) should also be mentioned. He seduced guests by conveying his passion for classical music.
Following the tribute paid by co-chairs Guy Cormier, President and Chief Executive Officer of Desjardins and Grégoire Baillargeon, Managing Director and Co-Head of BMO Capital Markets – Quebec, Mr. Audet spoke to the attendees: “I am very touched to see so many people gathered here tonight to celebrate Portage’s achievements. For almost 47 years, Portage has accomplished outstanding societal work. Thanks to the dedication of its leaders, staff and volunteers, thousands of adults, mothers with children, as well as teenagers receive assistance in self-discovery and rebuilding their lives. The positive effects are endless.”
This event helped raise the net sum of $1,275,000 which will be entirely dedicated to various Portage programs in Quebec.
Portage would like to thank the members of the Honorary Committee for their dedication: André Chagnon, Robert Dumas, Marcel Dutil, Serge Godin, Peter A. Howlett, Isabelle Marcoux, Andrew Molson, François Olivier, John A. Rae, Lino A. Saputo Jr., Colette Taylor and Louis Vachon. Portage would also like to thank all its partners, attendees and volunteers who once again responded with such generosity and enthusiasm.
The next edition of the Soirée des Grands Philanthropes will be held on Thursday, September 24, 2020.