Whether it’s restoring watersheds with WWF-Canada, supporting athletes from Special Olympics Canada or delivering breakfast to kids through Breakfast Clubs of Canada, Coca-Cola supports many causes year-round. Giving back is an essential part of how Coca-Cola Canada does business, because it knows that it can only be as strong as the communities it serves.

And while giving throughout the year is important, there is something just a little extra magical about giving during the holidays. So in keeping with the spirit of the season, Coca-Cola Canada is giving back in cities across the country.

(left to right) CP24's Stephen LeDrew with Shannon Denny and Norm Klager from Coca-Cola Canada.

This week I was lucky enough to spend the day tagging along with the Coca-Cola Holiday Truck as it made its rounds in Toronto. Driven for the second year by the incredible Norm Klager, the Holiday Truck spends the day delivering a little bit of holiday magic to those that need it the most.

In partnership with Canadian Tire and as a result of a successful employee toy drive at Coca-Cola’s King Street office, the Holiday Truck was able to make sizeable toy donations to both the CTV Toy Mountain campaign and the CP24 Chum Christmas Wish campaign. Both of these campaigns do incredible work to make sure that families across the GTA have a happy holiday regardless of their means.

Norm and Shannon with CTV's Tom Brown.

While turning on the truck’s festive lights, theatrically throwing open the back door and presenting the donations on-camera was very exciting, in my opinion the magic truly began after the TV cameras were gone. Following the presentation, the Holiday Truck steered into the parking lot of a nearby Canadian Tire to meet with some partners who’d been invited to add to our donation and get a picture with Santa Claus himself.

Santa Claus and a very festive Coca-Cola truck were no doubt an unusual sight for most folks walking into their neighbourhood Canadian Tire. More than a few curious shoppers stopped by say hi, learn more about the causes Coca-Cola was supporting and even grab a quick selfie with Santa while the Coca-Cola team set-up.

While we waited for our partners, one Good Samaritan even surprised us by returning from his shopping trip with some last-minute toys to add to the truck.. Again, no cameras or spotlight, just a simple act done out of the kindness of their heart.

Suffice it to say the spark of generosity started in everyday Canadians by a chance encounter with the Holiday Truck was truly inspiring to all of us present. The kind words and generous acts from the folks we met that day served as a powerful reminder of what it means to be a community during the holidays.

Other Places Coca-Cola Canada is Giving Back

In addition to our Toronto donations, we’ve also proudly made donations in support of Montreal’s Generations Foundation, Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter and Feed Nova Scotia.