November 5, 2009
Roots launches Canada Collection by Roots® as part of campaign with MasterCard Canada to raise funds for Right To Play for children in need

(TORONTO) – Roots is unveiling its new Canada Collection By Roots® today with a special fashion show and media event at its flagship Bloor St. store in Toronto.

Modeled by a team of socially committed Canadian athletes from a wide range of sports, Roots is presenting, for the first time, its Canada Collection By Roots. Inspired by the country’s history and physical beauty, coupled with the athletic heritage and varsity style of Roots, the collection features clothing, accessories and leather goods for the entire family. Made largely in Canada, it reflects the passion Roots has for its home country, sports and worthy causes.

Many of the clothing pieces feature the word ‘Canada’ displayed stylishly across the front, derived from the company’s Canadian heritage, and translated into a strong, clear and simple embellishment.

A portion of proceeds from all purchases of the collection will benefit Right To Play, the Canadian-based humanitarian organization that improves the lives of children around the world suffering from war, poverty, and disease.  Almost 700,000 children in 23 countries benefit from Right To Play programs each week.

“Roots, MasterCard and Right To Play are perfect partners for this project because of our shared values, our understanding of the importance of play, and our desire to give back to others, especially to children living in disadvantaged areas of the world,” says Johann Koss, President and CEO of Right To Play. “I hope this campaign will help Canadians further understand the power that sport and play have to change outcomes for children and communities everywhere and how they can help by supporting Right To Play.”

The Canada Collection by Roots will be sold in all Roots stores in Canada starting today and will be the focus of a major MasterCard TV ad campaign. Filmed in Africa, the commercial highlights the organization’s work and explains how it will benefit from the Canada Collection By Roots.  

“We are proud to be a part of such an important initiative with iconic organizations like Roots and Right To Play,” says Kevin Stanton, President, MasterCard Canada. “We share their philosophies and values when it comes to creating healthy and safe opportunities for young people through the power of sport and play.”

The Roots/MasterCard initiative for Right To Play follows last year’s highly successful collaboration between the two companies for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada (BBBSC). Over a six-week period, the ‘Give A Little For Something Big’ campaign by Roots and MasterCard raised more than $100,000 for BBBSC.

Roots has long been a supporter of Right To Play, having organized several initiatives in the past to benefit the international charity.

“Given the added dimension of the Canada Collection By Roots, we’re particularly proud of it,” says Roots Co-Founder Michael Budman, who first met Right To Play founder Johann Koss in 1994 in Lillehammer, Norway. “Our team really rose to the occasion in producing such a winning collection. Their inspiration was even greater, knowing that this collection was going to benefit such an important cause as children in need.”

For more information, please contact:

Robert Sarner
Director of Communication and Public Affairs
Roots Canada
Tel: 416.781.35.74, ext. 4280

Jill Anzarut
Environics Communications for MasterCard Canada
Tel: 416.969.2708

Robert Witchel
National Director
Right To Play Canada
Tel: 416.203.0190 x216