As we approach the final hours of our national Poppy Campaign, and on behalf of the millions of Canadians who have had the opportunity to wear a Poppy this year, I wanted to thank our more than 300,000 Legion members in more than 1,441 Legion branches across Canada, the United States, Mexico and in Europe for their support and dedication for this campaign.
With an estimated 20 million poppies worn this year, the efforts of Canadians to remember the more than 117,000 servicemen and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice has been heard loud and clear.
By making a donation and wearing a Poppy, Canadians of all ages support Canadian Armed Forces and RCMP Veterans and their families, but also many aspects of the communities where we all live. The Poppy Campaign makes it possible for the Legion to operate a Service Bureau which acts as an advocate for Veterans and RCMP members and their families to ensure their quality of life is the best it can be.
Every year, the money collected through the Poppy Campaign is used to provide direct assistance for Veterans and their families who are experiencing financial distress. The funds are used to pay for food, accommodation, utilities, dental and optical services and hospital comforts. The Legion truly cares about all Veterans, not just by advocating on their behalf, but by engaging in everyday activities to make their lives better. In fact, the 2012 Poppy Campaign provided more than $14 million in benevolence to Canada’s Veterans and serving personnel.
Again, thank you to the thousands of Legion members who helped with our Poppy Campaign and to the millions of Canadians who have proudly supported all Veterans. Whether they have served in the past or are serving today, in the eyes of the Legion there is only one Veteran. We are truly grateful.
We Will Remember Them,
The Royal Canadian Legion