Top banner
PDF buildemail iconPrint icon


Community Initiatives: Our Local, Regional and National Programs

Image communityOur Restaurant Owners are active members of the communities where they operate their business. We are proud to have Restaurant Owners who give back to their communities.

By working together with our Restaurant Owners, we have developed a number of local, regional and national programs as outlined below. In 2014, this represented approximately $16.7 million of funding that went back to support the communities where we do business. This is an increase over 2013, which was a total of approximately $16.3 million.

Timbits Minor Sports

Image Timbit Hockey Jamboree, Moncton, NB
Timbit Hockey Jamboree, Moncton, NB
One of our most widely recognized programs is our Timbits Minor Sports program for children aged four to eight years old. Together with our Restaurant Owners, we provide funding for associations to acquire uniforms and much-needed items that help offset costs for parents and volunteers.

We invest more than $3,000,000 annually in children’s sports. We are committed to this support because we believe it is important that children benefit from participating in team sports and have the opportunity to take time out to be a child.

Image sydney crossby 1993Today, over 82,000 children are supported by local Restaurant Owners in Timbits Minor Hockey. Almost 200,000 children are supported in Timbits Minor Soccer and more than 35,000 children are supported in other Timbits Minor Sports including baseball, basketball, lacrosse, football, curling and more.

Our Timbits Minor Sports program began with Timbits Hockey almost 30 years ago in New Brunswick, when one of our long-standing Restaurant Owners, Gary O’Neill, provided a set of jerseys to a local team in Riverview. Restaurant Owners from across Canada heard about the program and also began providing jerseys and sponsorship to minor hockey associations across the country. Our most famous Timbits participant is NHL star Sidney Crosby, who began his hockey career as a Timbits player in Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia, in 1993.

Timbits Hockey video

Smile CookieImage Smile cookie

Our Smile Cookie program is a very unique program that raises much-needed funds for charities across Canada and the United States. Each year, for one week during September, we sell special Smile Cookies (our famous chocolate chip cookies decorated with a smiley face). During that time, 100% of the proceeds from Smile Cookie sales are donated to local charities, hospitals and community programs.

Click here for a list of all 500 charitable organizations that received Smile Cookie funding in Canada in 2014.

Smile Cookie video

Free Skating and SwimmingImage Free Swim

Another popular program is our Free Holiday Skate program where we rent approximately 2,400 hours of ice time at more than 435 local arenas across Canada during the winter holiday season. This provides a great opportunity for families and friends to spend quality time together at no cost. Our program continues to grow in popularity, with many arenas at capacity during the skating sessions.

Similarly, our Free Swim program provides an opportunity for families to enjoy time together at a local swimming pool. In 2014, approximately 1700 hours of pool time was sponsored across over 74 local communities and at 198 pools.

Infographic Infographic

Food Drives

Our annual Tim Hortons food drives are an important stock replenishment source for local food banks across the country. In 2014, more than 52,720 pounds and over 27,752 units of food were collected in regions across Canada. The program is based on guests dropping off non-perishable food items in our restaurants, which are then collected and shipped to local area food banks. Some local restaurants also make donations of non-perishable food items, such as juice, to their local food bank.


The Tim Hortons Earn-a-Bike program is a community-oriented sponsorship program where children between the ages of 10 and 14 team up with community partners to help clean up their local streets, parks and schools. The participants complete 30 hours of community service and are rewarded with their very own Tim Hortons mountain bike and helmet, courtesy of their local Restaurant Owners. Children are selected from organizations such as Big Brothers and Big Sisters and their local police department. These organizations also coordinate the program and provide supervision while the children are out doing their part to make their community a cleaner, brighter place to live.

Image girl with bike Infographic bike

community giving

We believe we have a positive role to play in enabling communities to thrive and grow. We are proud to support a number of causes each year, either through financial support, product donations or gifts-in-kind, and employee volunteer time.

Annually, we provide a $1.25 million corporate donation to the Tim Horton Children’s Foundation, which supports efforts to give economically disadvantaged children the opportunity to go to camp. In 2014, we also provided a further $125,000 toward the Foundation’s Mission 10 Million campaign to raise funds for new camps. In addition, our Restaurant Owners donated $1.35 million to the Tim Horton Children’s Foundation in 2014.

With our network of more than 4,600 restaurants across Canada and the United States, we can make a big impact by helping to encourage charitable giving from our Restaurant Owners, restaurant Team Members and guests. Together with our Restaurant Owners, we also participate in programs such as Camp Day (raises funds for the Tim Horton Children’s Foundation) and Smile Cookie (raises funds for local charities) to provide a way for our guests to help us Make a True Difference in the communities where they live. To raise awareness of these and other charitable causes, our support includes media, advertising and the provision of products and other promotional materials.

  Approximate amount (CAD)
Community giving from Tim Hortons 1,900,000
Community giving from Restaurant Owners, facilitated by Tim Hortons1 18,600,000
Community giving from guests and partners, facilitated by Tim Hortons2 24,800,000

1 This amount represents the proportion of contributions made by Restaurant Owners to the Advertising and Promotion Fund (Canada) Inc. designated to community programs. It does not include other personal contributions made by our Restaurant Owners to the communities in which they live. For more information about our Advertising & Promotion Fund (Canada) Inc., please see our 2014 Annual Report on Form 10-K.

2 This amount represents contributions made by our Guests and Partners, facilitated by Tim Hortons and our Restaurant Owners.

Tim Hortons Support of the Military

Image poppyIn 2014, Tim Hortons sponsored the “True Patriot Love” Tribute Dinner in Calgary, Alberta. True Patriot Love is a national foundation established by corporate and community leaders to raise funds for programs that support the well-being and morale of members of the Canadian military, veterans, and their families.

In honour of Corporal Nathan Cirillo and Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent, Tim Hortons donated $50,000 to the Stand on Guard Fund. This fund was set up specifically for these two great Canadians in coordination with True Patriot Love. The money raised will be evenly distributed between the families of Cirillo and Vincent, who were killed in attacks in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu and Ottawa in October 2014. In total, over $700,000 was raised for the Cirillo and Vincent families.

We also support veterans and assist with fundraising efforts by placing poppy boxes in all restaurants leading up to Remembrance/Veterans Day. Additionally, on November 11, all veterans receive a free coffee or donut in our restaurants.

Fruition Fruits & Fills: Enviro-Stewards

Image biosand
Locally constructed
BioSand Filters (BSFs)
sponsored by Tim
Hortons Fruition Fruit
& Fills waiting to be
installed to purify water
in homes in Kajo Keji
County, South Sudan.
In 2010, Tim Hortons Fruition Fruit & Fills sponsored 40 bio-sand filters that purify drinking water in South Sudan, Africa with Elmira Ontario based engineering firm Enviro-Stewards ( The success of this program, and the resulting economic, environmental, and social benefits led the project to be selected as one of the top 5 Sustainability Projects in Canada for 2014 by Corporate Knights.

In 2013, civil conflict relapsed in South Sudan which prevented Enviro-Stewards from traveling to maintain their bio-sand filter projects. In 2014, and when it was safe to travel, Tim Hortons sponsored Enviro-Stewards to return to South Sudan to re-inspect the Fruition & Fills bio-sand filters and determine if they remained operational. The Enviro-Stewards team, alongside personnel from the South Sudanese Safe Water Project, found that of the 40 bio-sand filters, only one was out of daily use. The teams worked together to refurbish this out-of-use bio-sand filter and it is now fully operational. The exact locations of the Fruition & Fills bio-sand filters can be viewed here.

More than 400 people have received safe water for the last 4 years due the Fruition & Fills initial sponsorship. Thirty-one bio-sand filters are located in homes and nine in schools which provide approximately 1.2 million L of clean water every year.

Infographic bio-sand

Habitat for Humanity

In late 2013 and throughout 2014, we partnered with Habitat for Humanity to help divert waste from landfill during our restaurant renovations. We introduced Tim Hortons Restaurant Owners with local Habitat for Humanity ReStore Affiliates across Canada, and together they helped to develop a program to benefit both their businesses.

In 2014, Tim Hortons Restaurant Owners donated close to 11,000 kilograms of used items from restaurants undergoing renovation. Items such as lights, toilets and washroom fixtures, furniture, and ceiling tiles had previously been sent to landfill during a renovation. Through this partnership, they are resold via local Habitat for Humanity ReStores. All profits raised through the ReStores are used to support Habitat for Humanity.

Infographic habitat for humanity

Beyond waste reduction, this partnership supports local business entrepreneurs, and enhances Restaurant Owner and Tim Hortons goodwill in the communities where we do business.

Aboriginal Relations at Tim HortonsLogo horizons tim hortons

In 2014, we continued to work on implementing a meaningful, structured and long-term partnership with Aboriginal communities.

Our Aboriginal relations philosophy, strategy and programs are guided by the following principles:

  • Our programs must be sustainable;
  • Our programs must have a clear benefit;
  • Our programs must be community based; and
  • Our programs must be supported by the Aboriginal community.

To provide some structure to our guiding principles we have developed an Aboriginal relations framework that comprises four key areas of focus: 1) Education; 2) Empowering Youth; 3) Economic Development; and 4) Employment. We call our Aboriginal Relations Strategy and program outreach "Horizons".