Keeping the Giving Going in 2024 at AIA High Fives for Kids

by | Jun 3, 2024 | 0 comments

As the flow of the aftermarket returns to a state of normalcy, so does the fundraising activity for AIA High Fives for Kids Foundation.

“High Fives focuses on different communities, mostly smaller communities, working with AIA Canada members trying to support different kids’ charities,” says chairman Raymond Proulx. “Some of these charities could be lunch programs for schools; it could be summer camps. It’s been homes for abused women who have their children with them and are looking for financial support. “

A cornerstone charitable fundraiser and contributor, High Fives for Kids resorted to a creative solution during the depth of the pandemic in a bid to continue to contribute to deserving causes across Canada.

With the organization’s key fundraising events – golf tournaments – stopped entirely for a time, and then were more modest when they did return, the Chairman’s Challenge initiative begin by chair Raymond Proulx proved an effective strategy to help meet its goals.

“So, we’ve been able to support and touch many different types of charity programs across Canada, and the last few years through the Chairman’s Challenge – realizing that going through COVID, we weren’t able to rely on our events that did support the High Fives.

“In the last three or four years, we’ve been able to raise anywhere from $30-40,000 annually to keep doing the work that we are doing in supporting kids’ charities,” he adds, during which time The Chairman’s Challenge offered a direct donation campaign, plus recognition for contributions through industry publications.

Now, with industry golf tournaments and other events back on the calendar, Proulx looks forward to a year or more of traditional fundraising activities. “We’ll be focusing on the members and different events that have supported us,” he syas.

“[In 2023,] we supported the YWCA in Calgary, a family program in which we donated $7,000. We have also supported the Kerr Street Commission Services in Toronto, again working with families and children, in which we donated $5,000. And then we also supported the Junior Achievement Program in Edmonton, in which we donated $5,000. And certainly, we’re looking at these charities and other charities to be able to continue to do our work and really make a difference for kids’ charities across Canada.

“Another cause that we pursued in 2023 was the Ukrainian mission; as we all know, Ukraine is going through some immensely challenging times. We were able to make a donation for a Ukrainian charity in Eastern Canada and one in Western Canada, each with $2,500. So again, really outside the box of kids’ charities, but these families are touched, and their children are touched, with the things going on in that country. And we felt as an industry it was for us to make that step and make a difference for these families.”

Proulx reminds industry members that in addition to charitable contributions, High Fives also administers a number of industry scholarships.

“We have the Arthur Paulin Scholarship, in which we made seven donations to recipients and we donated close to $5,000 [to each]. And then we have the Aftermarket Foundation scholarship,  in which young adults can pursue automotive academics, and vocational schools in which we rewarded 10 recipients $10,000. So, we’ve been pretty busy on the charity side, on the scholarship side, making sure that the monies we do receive, we’re able to funnel back out to the different communities and also the scholarship program.”

But it’s charitable causes that are at the heart of what High Fives does.

“We get back to really dialling down to the smaller communities that have charity causes for kids that, for different reasons, can’t get government subsidies [or] financial revenues to support their work. So those are the type of charities that we focus on.

“We try to manage our monies the best way possible and to have the largest impact on these charities. But again, we’re trying to make sure that the monies that we do collect are given back to the different communities, that really will make a difference to those charities.”

Proulx is appreciative of the industry support for High Fives. “We certainly have some great supporters – with different golf venues. Certainly, Vast-Auto has been a great supporter of ours. The Ontario division of AIA Canada has also been, and some of the Western AIA divisions via golf tournaments have made some great donations to High Fives.

“So in 2024, we’ll be reaching out and working with those different groups and any other group that is willing to help the cause of High Fives For Kids. We’re always in need of donations to help us continue the work that we’re doing.”

AIA High Fives for Kids Foundation teamed up with the AIA Canada Quebec Division to do some important fundraising and awareness building at the division’s annual golf tournament. Above (l-r): Ray Proulx, Chair of AIA High Fives for Kids Foundation (KYB Americas LLC), Élisabeth Lambert, the president of AIA Canada’s Québec division (Pieces d’atuo Joliette Inc.), and division board member Patrick Saint Pierre, (Entrepot de Montreal 1470 Inc).

Visit for more information or to make a donation. AIA Canada members wishing to submit a charitable cause for consideration, please reach out through the website or a board member directly. All proposals for support must be made by an AIA Canada member.

AIA High Fives for Kids Foundation Board

Chair: Raymond Proulx,


Fifield, Dave,
Dave Desmarais,
Steve Bujold,
Tom Dunlop,
Zara Wishloff – APD (Automotive Parts Distributors),
Andrew Ross,


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