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BMO Financial Group steps forward as presenting sponsor of the 2013 Walk so Kids Can Talk in support of Kids Help Phone

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Canada's largest walk to support of child and youth mental health and well-being will be held in more than 30 communities across Canada on Sunday, May 5th, 2013

TORONTO, March 21, 2013 /CNW/ - Kids Help Phone is pleased to announce BMO Financial Group as the new presenting sponsor of the Walk so Kids Can Talk - Canada's largest walk in support of child and youth mental health and well-being - as it joins the marquee fundraising event's existing roster of caring and dedicated corporate supporters.

"This partnership is wonderful news and a real milestone in our longstanding relationship with BMO," says Sharon Wood, President and CEO, Kids Help Phone. "We're excited about welcoming BMO employees to this extraordinary Walk so Kids Can Talk campaign benefitting the young people who contact us every day, reaching out for critical mental health support. We feel privileged to share our vision of healthy communities with BMO, and to step forward as one community for one cause - kids."

"The bank couldn't be more proud to be the presenting sponsor of Walk so Kids Can Talk in support of Kids Help Phone, an organization that BMO and its employees have long and enthusiastically supported -- as one of its founding partners," said Bill Downe, President and Chief Executive Officer, BMO Financial Group. "We care about kids, and as part of our broadened partnership, this walk will see BMO employees right across Canada join together with their families to have some fun, raise funds and do something important for young people."

The Walk so Kids Can Talk presented by BMO is a nationwide effort where thousands of kids, parents, educators, community members, and corporations come together to support the *6.5 million kids, teens and young adults in Canada who can benefit from Kids Help Phone's service.

It takes many dedicated individuals and organizations to make this important campaign possible, and Kids Help Phone would like to acknowledge, thank and celebrate its other 2013 national Walk corporate supporters and their employees:

National Sponsors:
Air Miles LoyaltyOne, Parmalat Canada, Nestlé Canada

Community Engagement Partners:
Bell, Bell Aliant, Empire Theatres

Media Partner:
Bell Media

"Partnership is essential so that Kids Help Phone can keep its promise to 'be there' for kids," says David Gray, Vice President, Marketing, Communications + Strategic Development, Kids Help Phone. "Our relationships with dedicated and passionate companies bring new ideas and critical funding, which help us ensure we continue being available to young people across Canada, offering support and hope whenever and however they need it. We are very fortunate to have all of the national, regional and community partners that we do, who make it possible for us to deliver our essential service."

As one of Kids Help Phone's founding partners, BMO Financial Group has been working with Kids Help Phone since 1989, offering support that has been critical for several generations of young people across Canada. As the presenting sponsor of the Walk so Kids Can Talk, BMO's enhanced commitment to Kids Help Phone means that BMO employees across the country will be bringing out their walking shoes, along with their dedication to young people's well-being on Sunday May 5, 2013.

Please visit www.walksokidscantalk.ca for more details about this important campaign, and to register as a 2013 Walk participant.

* Source: Represents the number of Canadians from 5 to 20 (the age group Kids Help Phone serves) according to Statistics Canada, CANSIM, table 051-0001. Last modified: 2012-09-27.

About Us:
Kids Help Phone is a Canadian and world leader, known for our expertise in providing vital, innovative, and professional counselling services to children and youth. Since 1989 we have offered children, teens and young adults in Canada a critical lifeline of hope and support, through our free, anonymous and confidential service. Our professional counsellors support the mental health and well-being of young people ages five to 20, in urban, rural, and remote communities, by providing one-on-one counselling, information and resources online and by phone. Our internationally recognized, award-winning websites are considered a model of child-focused interactive design, and offer online counselling forums and engaging, therapeutic games, tools and information to encourage resilience and self-care. A community-based national charity, Kids Help Phone receives no core government funding and relies on community and corporate support to keep our essential service available. We're available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, in English and in French.

To learn more about Kids Help Phone, please visit www.kidshelpphone.ca

You can also find us at:

facebook.com/kidshelpphone
twitter.com/kidshelpphone
youtube.com/kidshelpphone

SOURCE Kids Help Phone

Image with caption: "Walk So Kids Can Talk (CNW Group/Kids Help Phone)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130321_C7059_PHOTO_EN_24704.jpg



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