Difference Makers

How much does it take to make a difference? Some effort, a bit on inspiration and a little teamwork. That’s it.

Driving Home for Christmas

With the Holiday Food Drive complete, it was time for a speedy delivery. Hundreds of pounds of donated food was loaded into Daniel’s Subaru. The Demaras Racing driver, plus his co-pilot Michelle, headed down to the drop-off point on Queen St.

The Woodgreen Foundation operates a program called First Steps to Home which helps people experiencing homelessness or unstable housing to begin their journey off to the streets, to a real home. Woodgreen provides safe housing and support to those in need.

Zigzagging through the laneways behind 650 Queen St East, Daniel and Michelle were greeted by Lauren and Michaela from The Woodgreen Foundation. Everyone helped carefully unload the donations from the back of the blue Subaru.

Racing is a cut-throat business. Drivers try to take positions away from one another, capitalizing on another racer’s error or misfortune. When striving for glory, there are no friends on the racetrack.

But one of the first things learned at the track is that winning is done by a team working together. Drivers, mechanics, sponsors and supporters all have valuable parts to play.

A special thank you to the folks at The Woodgreen Foundation for all the good they do throughout the year.

Wrapping Up

Demaras Racing teamed up with Nostalgia Coffee Company for a Holiday Food Drive that wrapped up earlier this week.

Inspired by the generosity shown during the Toronto Miracle, the racers handled all the driving, picking up food donations from neighbours, and adding them to collections at the cafe on O’Connor Dr. The event called “Nobody Can Run on Empty” helped show that a few motivated individuals can do some good in the community.

Kathy K., the VP of Development at The Woodgreen Foundation, came up to Nostalgia on Wednesday to lend a hand with the loading up the donations. She’s been helpful in guiding the Food Drive.

Glenda & Ronnie from Nostalgia Coffee Co. stand with Michelle, Daniel and Chris from Demaras Racing displaying the 449 lbs. of food donations collected from the community, just in time for the holidays. A proud moment for all.

Nobody Can Run On Empty

The Toronto Miracle food drive gave dad and daughter duo Chris and Michelle Demaras the opportunity to help their community in the one-day blitz. It also inspired the entire Demaras Racing team to continue the good work by organizing a local neighborhood food drive called “Nobody Can Run on Empty“.

Many lessons are learned at the racetrack, including the notion that talent can win a race, but teamwork wins championships. To make the food drive a success, Demaras Racing approached longtime sponsor Nostalgia Coffee Co. to team up on a local food drive.

From December 16th to December 22nd 2021, café customers brought their food donations to Nostalgia at 855 O’Connor Dr., while drivers from Demaras Racing handled front-door pickups from local residents who couldn’t make it out in person.

Today is the final day of the food drive. Please visit Nostalgia Coffee Co. at 855 O’Connor Dr. with a nonperishable food donation to help make the season a little brighter for families in need..

Holiday Help

Help brighten the season for local families experiencing hunger. Support the Holiday Food Drive at Nostalgia Coffee Company, our long-time racing sponsor. Please bring your non-perishable food items to 855 O’Connor Dr in East York, just north of St. Clair Ave East.

Would you like to donate, but can’t make it over to Nostalgia? No problem! Send Demaras Racing a message and we’ll send our speedy driver to pick up your donation right from your front door!

Welcome donations include.

  • Canned meat & fish
  • Canned vegetables, beans and fruit
  • Powdered milk
  • Dried fruits, nuts, granola bars
  • Trail mix and instant oatmeal
  • Crackers and soup
  • Juice boxes

All donations will be delivered to local WoodGreen Foundation on Danforth Ave in time for the holidays.

Miracle Makers

Statement from Toronto Miracle organizers about the incredible results of this year’s food drive!

Are you ready for some amazing Toronto Miracle 2021 math?

1,000 volunteers
+ 4,200 donors
+ 12 core team members
= 215,000 lbs of food collected to feed our neighbours in need.

YOU MADE THAT HAPPEN. AND WE ARE IN AWE OF YOUR INCREDIBLE WORK.

Especially when we look at these numbers and compare them to the results from last year’s Toronto Miracle:

2,351 volunteers
+ 6,016 donors
+ 15 core team members
= 210,000 lbs of food collected to feed our neighbours in need.

With less than half the volunteers, and about two-thirds the number of donors, together we still managed to increase donations compared to last year!

These kinds of results happen when thousands of caring people come together to make a difference. You all dug so deep this year to make this happen and we couldn’t be more grateful to count you amongst the miracle-makers of our city.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Dad and Daughter Duo

Special thanks to CityNews videographer David Zura who documented Demaras Racing’s efforts on Saturday, December 4th 2021 as part of the Toronto Miracle food-drive.

Toronto Miracle

On Saturday, Michelle Demaras and her driver Chris, collected hundreds of pounds of donated food on behalf of Toronto Miracle. The volunteer organization’s goal was to collect 250,000 lbs. of food donations in one day.

Michelle Demaras was the Community Captain of the ‘Blake-Jones’ neighbourhood of East York, and facilitated pickup from 23 locations between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm. One of the donors was family friend Paul, who was interviewed by CityNews while his camera-shy wife Susanne hid just inside the front door of their home clutching her pet bunny.

The final count of food collected will soon be completed, but it really doesn’t matter. What’s important is that people in Toronto were inspired to do good…to help those in need.

There was such a tremendous amount of generosity that collection trucks at the depots were filled to capacity. So, Chris delivered the truckload of food directly to the Salvation Army warehouse on Railside Rd in North York. Seeing the size of the warehouse, and the 100,000’s of donations gave Chris pause for thought; despite the whole community effort, this is just the beginning. There’s a lot of work to do.

Signs

All around Toronto, signs of support for Toronto Miracle have popped up. From small businesses and churches to condos and schools, the charity initiative has struck a chord with many in the big city.

Michelle is the official artist at Demaras Racing, this time turning the team truck into her canvas.

Only one more sleep to go! Tomorrow is the day so many people in the Toronto Miracle have been waiting for. Over 1,000 volunteers strong…tomorrow thy deploy across the city to pickup hundreds of thousands of pounds of food for the needy. It’s a big deal!

It might not be easy. Toronto Miracle is a scrappy DIY effort. And that’s the whole point. A whole lot of humans coming together to reach for a collective goal and do something truly outstanding, heartfelt and miraculous.

Helping Make a Miracle

Toronto Miracle is a grassroots food drive initiative, run completely on volunteer power. On December 4th 2021 at 10:00 AM, residents of Toronto are invited to leave a non-perishable food item on their doorstep (clearly marked for Toronto Miracle). Volunteers will collect these donations and redistribute them to people in need in the community. Donors are asked to register their intent to donate on https://www.torontomiracle.org/ so teams can plan pick up routes accordingly.

All donations collected and delivered will be distributed to organizations including the Daily Bread Food Bank, Second Harvest, Harvest Food Bank, Food Security Initiative and The Salvation Army. Combined, these organizations help provide food to over 300 community agencies across the GTA.

Racing to help the initiative will be Michelle & Chris from Demaras Racing. The father-daughter duo will be rapidly gathering donations all across East York in the team truck Black Magic.

The Demaras Racing family is no stranger to community involvement. Previously Michelle and Daniel held fundraisers for Racing to End Alzheimer’s and last year helped collect and donate PPE for Michael Garron Hospital in the early days of the pandemic..