Charity golf tournaments represent a great way to bring people together and raise money for a worthy cause. The Home Trust Tom Trenouth Charity Golf Tournament accomplishes just that. Now in its seventh year, the tournament is in honour of Tom Trenouth, who was a valued Home Trust employee as AVP, business development.
Held in support of the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), the tournament is a rewarding, fun-filled day with huge potential to raise a lot of money and awareness of mental health. To date, the tournament has raised $550,000 for this important cause.
Carla Dorland, Senior Manager, Events, at Home Trust, spearheads the planning and execution of the tournament as committee chair, and works alongside Tom’s children, Brennan, Home Trust’s Business Development Manager, and Chelsea, Fulfillment Officer at Home Trust. We sat down with the trio to learn more about the objectives of the tournament and the importance of giving back.
What was the impetus behind the tournament?
Originally, the golf tournament was created as a celebration of life for our father who passed away in early 2013. He was not only a Home Trust employee and long-time industry professional, but an avid golfer as well. This industry partakes in golf quite regularly, so it was only fitting that Home Trust created a charity golf tournament in his honour.
The tournament offers a chance for our industry to come together for a great cause each year. When you work in a fast-paced industry such as ours, it is very easy to put your health on the sidelines. Our hopes are that each year we are engaging the participants in the topic of mental health and propelling it into everyday conversations.
How does the money you raise help the charity?
Our sponsorship dollars support the Canadian Mental Health Association in its mission to promote mental health and help those with mental illnesses, while keeping their costs low. As the nationwide leader and champion for mental health, CMHA facilitates access to the resources of the community, builds resilience and supports recovery from mental illness.
What does people’s support mean to you?
The support is tremendous both on a personal and corporate level. On a personal level, we (Chelsea and Brennan) have been working at Home Trust for many years and consider our colleagues to be family. It is also an amazing feeling at each tournament, when we have so many industry professionals come out to support a cause very near and dear to our hearts.
On a corporate level, it shows the great relationship we have with our industry partners. Year after year we sell out, which shows how excited our partners are to join us for a memorable day, but also indicates our industry’s charitable mindset.
How does the committee attract sponsors and participants?
When we first started the tournament, we reached out to other lenders, insurers, mortgage brokers and affiliates within the industry. All sponsorships were spoken for within two weeks of us releasing the packages. Since then, we have had continued support and very rarely do we have a spot come available.
What are the rewards the company receives from the tournament?
The reward is knowing that the money raised from this tournament is going an organization that provides resources nationwide to an illness that still has so much stigma attached to it. The tournament builds on our relationships with our industry partners and really showcases that our industry as a whole acknowledges and supports mental health awareness.
What are some of the tournament achievements?
Year over year we are sold out within a short period of time. We have guests that would love to participate and have asked us to grow the tournament but we want to maintain the vibe that we have at the tournament and keep it to 144 players. We have outstanding feedback every year and everyone comments that it is one of the best tournaments that they attend on a yearly basis.
What are the highlights of the tournament for you?
The tournament is filled with amazing touches from the moment you step out of your car and are greeted by Home Trust employees. You are ushered over to receive your welcome gift, which have ranged from Maui Jim sunglasses to personal fittings for FootJoy golf shoes. We have activities at every hole and, of course, one of the most popular is the President’s hole where you can chat with our President and CEO Yousry Bissada. The ice cream truck is also a huge hit, where you get to relive your youthful days and enjoy an ice cream, sundae or milkshake.
What advice would you give to other companies that are thinking about getting involved in charity and community activities?
There is no better feeling than knowing you are making a difference. That feeling alone is very beneficial to your own wellbeing. The charity or activity may not affect you directly, but indirectly it affects us all. It doesn’t matter how big or small the involvement, just being involved is the first step to a brighter tomorrow.
This article first appeared in 2019, Issue 2 of Perspectives magazine, first published in May 2019 by Mortgage Professionals Canada.