Toronto, ON (February 24, 2012) – The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) is thrilled to announce Montréal band Simple Plan as the recipients of the 2012 Allan Waters Humanitarian Award, sponsored by Bell Media. Through the Simple Plan Foundation, the JUNO Award–winning band has donated more than $750,000 to youth-focused charities since December 2005, helping both young people in need and children facing life-threatening illness in Canada and abroad. Thanks to the incredible success of the group’s most recent benefit concert with the Montréal Symphony Orchestra last fall, the
Foundation will reach the outstanding milestone of $1 million in donations in 2012.
The Allan Waters Humanitarian Award recognizes outstanding Canadian artists whose humanitarian contributions have positively enhanced the social fabric of Canada. Named after CHUM Ltd. founder Allan Waters, the award is made possible by funding from Bell Media’s CTV-CHUM Benefits. It will be presented to Simple Plan band members Pierre Bouvier, Chuck Comeau, David Desrosiers, Sébastien Lefebvre and Jeff Stinco during the 2012 JUNO Gala Dinner & Awards on Saturday, March 31 in Ottawa, Canada’s Capital.
“Words cannot express how grateful we are to be the recipients of this award,” said Simple Plan band member Chuck Comeau. “To be recognized by CARAS and the JUNO Awards is a true honour for us. As a band we have been very fortunate to receive the constant support of our fans, which has allowed us to continue doing what we love for the last ten years. Because of that, we believe that it is extremely important for us to give back, and the Simple Plan Foundation is our way to do this. We are very proud of all of our Foundation’s initiatives — they have helped to define us as a band and have become a large part of who we are. There is no question that the Simple Plan Foundation will continue to grow and that we will be able to help our communities for many years to come.”
With tracks like “Welcome To My Life,” “Untitled” and “Perfect,” Simple Plan is known for songs that speak to the not-so-simple lives of young people. Through the Simple Plan Foundation, the band has taken a more direct approach to addressing youthrelated issues: in addition to providing financial support for organizations that help young people facing significant social and health challenges, the Foundation also focuses its efforts on highlighting the power of music to help youth and teens find a passion and direction in life.
Over their decade-long career, the band has been nominated for eight JUNO Awards, and was the recipient of the JUNO Fan Choice Award in 2006.
“We are thrilled to be recognizing Simple Plan’s charitable achievements and dedication to youth welfare with this honour,” said Melanie Berry, President & CEO of CARAS/The JUNO Awards & MusiCounts.“Their ongoing commitment to philanthropy and their Foundation is tremendous, and we salute them for all of their exceptional work.” “Bell Media is proud to sponsor The Allan Waters Humanitarian Award,” said Mirko Bibic, Senior Vice-President, Regulatory & Government Affairs, Bell Media. “Canadian talent, world-class on so many levels, deserve recognition for the courageous and generous work they do in supporting and spotlighting humanitarian causes both at home and around the world. Bell Media commends Simple Plan on their amazing work.”
For more information on the 2012 JUNO Awards, or to download photos of Simple Plan, go to www.junoawards.ca.
The idea to start the Simple Plan Foundation came as a direct result of the strong connection the band had created with its fans. Through meeting them at the shows and reading their letters, the band became vividly aware of the hardships faced by some their young fans, and wanted to find a way to have a more direct and positive impact on their lives.
Making more than 20 charitable donations a year since its inception in 2005, the Foundation has supported the work of countless recognized organizations. Making a difference in the lives of youth at home and abroad, the Foundation has made substantial contributions to the following charities: War Child Canada, Kids Help Phone, Leucan, Fondation Portage, Fondation Les Auberges du Coeur, The Lighthouse – Children and Families, St-Justine Hospital, Dans La Rue, Gris, the Montréal Children’s Hospital and many more.
All this was made possible by a large number of benefit events and activities throughout the years. Since 2008, the band has held annual benefit concerts and fundraising events to raise money for the Foundation. Just last fall, Simple Plan teamed up with the Montréal Symphony Orchestra (MSO) to perform a one-of-a-kind benefit concert to a sold-out crowd of 2,000 guests at the brand new Maison symphonique de Montréal. Incorporating 16 recent and classic Simple Plan songs with the MSO’s orchestral interpretations, the event raised over $300,000 – the Foundation’s biggest individual fundraising initiative to date. Simple Plan has also participated in a number of charitable programs and concerts. They performed at the LIVE 8 benefit concert in 2005 and participated in the effort to help victims of the Southeast Asia tsunami in 2004. They continuously respond to requests from the Make-a-Wish and Children’s Wish Foundation, and have contributed to MADD (Mothers Against Drinking and Driving) and RAAD (The Entertainment Industry’s Voice for Road Safety), as well as to Educ-Alcohol, where they appeared in an important campaign against drinking and driving.
Additionally, Simple Plan has worked alongside a wide range of partners to create unique fundraising opportunities. Past partnerships have seen band members participate in the Young Artist for Haiti single, “Waving Flag,” in the release of iTune’s first worldwide charitable single, “Save You,” and performing at the 2012 We Day celebrations in Montréal. 2011 saw the band create a t-shirt for Japan (with all proceeds going directly to Red Cross Japan), conduct two very successful campaigns for War Child (bracelet and wallet), hold a benefit concert for Leucan, work with Senheiser to facilitate a concert for hearing-impaired teens (their first!) and create an exclusive design, limited edition t-shirt for Kids Help Phone (with partner Bluenotes), raising close to $40,000 for the suicide-prevention organization. The band even stripped down to promote the importance of work done by
the United Way, lending their likeness to their annual fundraising campaign.
Today, the band continues to use their worldwide popularity to raise funds for the Simple Plan Foundation – their 2012 tour will see $1 of each ticket sale going back to the Foundation. In addition, every new SP Crew fan club membership will also make the same donation ($1/membership). Most recently, Simple Plan has partnered with Sher-Wood Hockey and Pro Life Hockey to create a limited edition Simple Plan hockey stick with all proceeds going back to the Simple Plan Foundation.
The members of Simple Plan will join an esteemed group of Allan Waters Humanitarian Award recipients, including Neil Young (2011), Bryan Adams (2010), Sarah McLachlan (2009), Paul Brandt (2008), Tom Jackson (2007) and Bruce Cockburn (2006), when they are honoured as part of JUNO Week, March 26-April 1 in Ottawa, Canada’s Capital. THE 2012 JUNO AWARDS will be broadcast live on CTV the evening of Sunday, April 1 from Scotiabank Place in Ottawa. CARAS gratefully acknowledges CTV for its outstanding support of Canadian talent and for its support of the Allan Waters Humanitarian Award. Tickets for The 2012 JUNO Awards are now on sale, visit www.capitaltickets.ca for more information.
Broadcast sponsors of THE 2012 JUNO AWARDS are Chevrolet, Garnier, Rogers and TD. Sponsors of the 2012 JUNO Awards include FACTOR, Canada’s Private Radio Broadcasters and The Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage’s “Canada Music Fund,” Radio Starmaker Fund, National Capital Commission (NCC), Province of Ontario, the City of Ottawa and TD.
The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences/L’académie canadienne des arts et des sciences de l’enregistrement (CARAS) is a not-for-profit organization created to preserve and enhance the Canadian music and recording industries and to contribute toward higher artistic and industry standards. The main focus of CARAS is the exploration and development of ongoing opportunities to showcase and promote Canadian artists and music through vehicles such as The JUNO Awards and other yearround initiatives. For more information on the 41st Annual JUNO Awards or The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences’ (CARAS) website please visit www.junoawards.ca or www.carasonline.ca.
About Bell Media:
Bell Media is Canada’s premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio and digital. With passion and an unrelenting commitment to excellence, Bell Media entertains, informs and inspires Canadians. Bell Media owns 28 conventional stations, including CTV, Canada’s #1 television network and lead broadcaster of the London 2012 Olympic Games, and owns and operates 30 specialty channels, including TSN, Canada’s #1 specialty channel and RDS, Canada’s #1 French-language specialty channel. Bell Media also owns 33 radio stations, dozens of websites including the Sympatico.ca portal, and Dome Productions Inc. Bell Media is owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada’s largest communications company. For more on Bell Media, please visit www.bellmedia.ca.