Cenovus employees, clockwise from front left, Manisha Kumar, Vicki Reid, Patricia Bailey, Ada Fong and Diane Poon, stand along the Cenovus Legacy Trail adjacent to Stampede Park.

Wil Andruschak
Content Works

Adapting and growing are essential when leading in tumultuous times, but holding firm to what matters is important, too.

Children matter. Families matter. Communities matter.

This is why Cenovus Energy Inc. chose to sponsor the Family Day event at the Calgary Stampede this year.

“We know as well as anyone that the last couple of years have been difficult, and this was a way for us to give back to the community and give families an opportunity to go to the Stampede who might not otherwise get to go,” says Vicki Reid, director of community affairs at Cenovus.

“For other families, it’s an opportunity to save some money on admission and breakfast, and then have a little more to spend on their visit on rides and such.

“Either way, we consider it a gift from us to the community.”

Cenovus Family Day, which runs from 8 a.m. to midnight on Sunday, July 9, includes free entry for families that arrive before noon and a breakfast at no charge for the first 25,000 guests.

Breakfast tickets will be distributed at the park entrances and the meal will be served at the Saddledome steps and the grandstand courtyard from 8:30 - 11 a.m.

“We are really focused on families and children, and that is also why, despite our own challenges, we have increased our giving to food banks,” says Reid.

“We are focused on our priorities. And families and children and their well-being in our community are a priority for us.”

Last fall, Cenovus staff donated about 5,500 kilograms of food to the Veterans Food Bank in Calgary while supporting many other initiatives.

“We don’t just do business here,” says Reid. “We want to be part of the social fabric — part of the community that makes it better whether times are tough or times are great.”

Volunteerism and employee engagement in giving is highly valued and encouraged at Cenovus, and this year, 150 employees will be volunteering at the Cenovus Family Day breakfast at the Stampede.

“We don’t just give money, but also give our time and talent,” says Reid. “Our staff is eager to be there at 7 a.m. Sunday morning to make this an amazing event.”

The company has also done its part to keep people safe at Stampede.

Cenovus has sponsored safety training for Stampede staff for the past several years, and has funded the use of small safety vehicles that operate on the grounds. The vehicles can quickly attend to visitors with medical issues until emergency services arrive.

This is a reflection of the company’s culture, where safety is always top of mind.

“We have sponsored safety activities at the Calgary Stampede, because that definitely aligns with our priorities,” says Reid.

“We weren’t going to let that go. Our sponsorship of Family Day was an addition.”

It is also a way for the company to build unity and among its valued employees.

“We want our employees to be proud of the company that they work for,” says  Reid.

“We are a Canadian company headquartered in Calgary, and so who better than us to sponsor an iconic event like the Calgary Stampede that is known all over the world.

“We were grateful for the opportunity to partner with the Stampede to do it.”

Cenovus also boasts a year-round presence at the Stampede Grounds, thanks to its sponsorship of the Cenovus  Legacy Trail.

Located at the east end of the grounds, the refurbished trail that runs along the Elbow River — part of the city pathway system and the Trans Canada Trail — includes interpretive signage that describes Calgary’s history and western heritage.

This feature was created by Content Works, Postmedia’s commercial content division, on behalf of Calgary Economic Development

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