York University receives new donation to further reduce barriers to skills training and education for the Jane-Finch community


TD Bank Group commits $1 million in funding to support a renewed focus on building mid-career bridging programs, training and re-skilling initiatives

TORONTO, June 10, 2019 - Today, York University announced a new donation from TD to support the TD Community Engagement Centre at Yorkgate Mall in the Black Creek Community. The TD Centre is a satellite office of York University that strives for academic innovation through community building and experiential learning along with postsecondary attainment for the Black Creek Community.

Since its inception, the centre has served nearly 70,000 people from the local community with dozens of programs and has become a catalyst for breaking down barriers, fostering mutually-beneficial partnerships and positive change for the local community.

Talisha Ramsaroop was a high school student in Black Creek. Although talented and eager to make a difference, she did not envision herself pursuing a postsecondary education. She soon realized that the stigma imposed on the community had affected her perception of herself and her goals. After connecting with York’s ACE program she enrolled at York and vowed to help find pathways for local youth to pursue postsecondary education. Today, Talisha is an employee of the TD Centre and speaks to local high school students about empowering themselves to pursue their dreams.

When Abena Offeh-Gyimah dreamed up her small business, the first place she turned for support was the TD Community Engagement Centre. Offeh-Gyimah’s small business offers the Black Creek Community native foods from Africa while building ethical relationships with farmers, cooperatives and collectives that enhance food sovereignty. And for her, the support she received from the TD Centre was the key to her success.

“York University has transformed from community participant, to leader, to a fully-engaged institution in the Black Creek community,” said York University President and Vice-Chancellor Rhonda L. Lenton. “As part of our commitment to access and connection, we have brought together community, university and civic partners in a spirit of inclusion and empowerment. We couldn’t have done it without TD Bank Group and look forward to the next 10 years of breaking down barriers through university-community-private sector partnerships.”

Norie Campbell, Group Head, Customer and Colleague Experience and a York alumna, expressed TD’s commitment to making a difference in the community. "The skills needed for jobs today is vastly different than just a few years ago. It is critical that there are resources and places where individuals can seek assistance to learn and upskill in order to thrive. I am delighted that TD Community Engagement Centre's leadership and programs are helping people in the community feel more confident about their future in the changing economy."

Celebrating over a decade of impact, TD initially supported the creation of the York University TD Community Engagement Centre in 2007. The renewed commitment not only recognizes the accomplishments in the Black Creek Community, it will support a new approach focusing on mid-career bridging programs through training and re-skilling programs.

The donation has been made through TD's corporate citizenship platform, The Ready Commitment, which leverages the collective power of its philanthropy, its business and its human capital to help people feel more confident and achieve their personal goals in a changing world.

About The Ready Commitment

TD has a long-standing commitment to enriching the lives of its customers, colleagues and communities. As part of its corporate citizenship platform, The Ready Commitment, TD is targeting CDN $1 billion (US $775 million) in total by 2030 towards community giving in four areas critical to opening doors for a more inclusive and sustainable tomorrow – Financial Security, Vibrant Planet, Connected Communities and Better Health. Through The Ready Commitment TD aspires to link its business, philanthropy and human capital to help people feel more confident - not just about their finances, but also in their ability to achieve their personal goals in a changing world. For further information, visit td.com/thereadycommitment

About York University

York University champions new ways of thinking that drive teaching and research excellence. Our students receive the education they need to create big ideas that make an impact on the world. Meaningful and sometimes unexpected careers result from cross-disciplinary programming, innovative course design and diverse experiential learning opportunities. York students and graduates push limits, achieve goals and find solutions to the world’s most pressing social challenges, empowered by a strong community that opens minds. York U is an internationally recognized research university – our 11 faculties and 25 research centres have partnerships with 200+ leading universities worldwide. Located in Toronto, York is the third largest university in Canada, with a strong community of 53,000 students, 7,000 faculty and administrative staff, and more than 300,000 alumni. York U's fully bilingual Glendon Campus is home to Southern Ontario's Centre of Excellence for French Language and Bilingual Postsecondary Education.


Yanni Dagonas, York University Media Relations, 647-468-7850 yannidag@yorku.ca

Heather Reinsborough, Manager, Corporate and Public Affairs TD Bank Group, 647-405-2660 heather.reinsborough@td.com