MAX Canada Insurance Makes Unprecedented Gift to Mennonite Disaster Services for Ft. McMurray Rebuilding Effort

(September 28, 2016, Kitchener, ON) – A Canadian property/casualty insurance company with a unique approach to business is stepping up in a big way to help the people who were displaced by the devastating wild fire in Ft. McMurray, Canada.

In keeping with its commitment to helping others in crisis, MAX Canada Insurance Co., and its Mutual Aid Ministries (MAM) program have announced an unprecedented $80,000 gift to Mennonite Disaster Services to aid in the Ft. McMurray recovery efforts.

“MAM is the heart of MAX,” said Elaine Shantz, MAX Canada Board Chairman. “We are pleased to partner with MDS as their recovery teams help affected families get back on their feet.”

MAM is funded through top-line revenue contributions from MAX Canada. Over the years, it has helped countless individuals and families facing financial crises due to accidents, job loss or other unforeseen challenges. “We care beyond the contract by devoting a percentage of every premium to MAM. When we witnessed the heart-breaking devastation in Ft. McMurray we knew we had to help in a big way.”

The gift to MDS is the largest in the ministry’s history, said Shantz. “This crisis is unique in the annals of our program. It required a unique response.”

“We were blown away when MAX called us and said they were going to make this gift,” said Ross Penner, MDS’ Region 5 Director of Operations. “It is a very significant gift and it’s going to do so much to help Ft. McMurray recover. Specifically, we will use these funds to provide meals, food and supplies for the MDS volunteers who will be going to Ft. McMurray in the coming weeks.”

Penner explained that MDS volunteers will soon arrive in Ft. McMurray to begin rebuilding homes and businesses. “Our volunteers are an extraordinary group of caring people,” Penner said. “They are skilled workers who give freely of their time and talents to help others in need.”

MAX Canada Insurance Company is a property/casualty insurance company that believes in a set of core values that derive from our founding Mennonite, Brethren and other Anabaptist faith communities. MAX employees, representatives, and members subscribe to and practice these values as conditions of their association with the enterprise:

MAX is FAIR. We believe in treating others as we would like to be treated.
MAX is FAITHFUL. We affirm and seek Higher Guidance from God, whose blessing extends to all people, no matter their particular spiritual pathway.
MAX is SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE. We believe business has a responsibility to do good in the world.

Kitchener, Ontario, Canada Office
50 Queen Street North, Suite 860
Kitchener, ON N2H 6P4, Canada

Overland Park, Kansas Office
4400 College Boulevard, Suite 250
Overland Park, KS 66211

Mennonite Disaster Service is volunteer network of Anabaptist churches dedicated to responding to natural and man-made disasters in Canada and the United States.
Our aim is to assist the most vulnerable community members, individuals, and families who would not otherwise have the means to recover. MDS volunteers – men and women, youth and adults – provide the skills and labor needed to respond, rebuild and restore in the wake of a disaster.

MDS is known for having a collaborative spirit, and we work with other groups including faith-based organizations, local recovery committees, and both governmental and non-governmental agencies. MDS is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

MDS Binational Office
583 Airport Road
Lititz, PA 17543
T: (800) 241-8111
T: (717) 735-3536
F: (717) 735-0809

MDS Region V Office
6A-1325 Markham Rd
Winnipeg, MB R3T 4J6
T: (866) 261-1274 (Can. only)
T: (204) 261-1274
F: (204) 261-1279

Photo:  Elaine Shantz, MAX Canada Board Chairman; Paul Burns, MAX Canada Underwriting Manager and Mutual Aid Ministries Advisory Team Member; Ross Penner, MDS Region 5 Director of Operations.

Kids Take Over the Kitchen Day

by Karen Morrone, Marketing and Communications Manager

September 13 is Kids Take Over the Kitchen Day.  I think kids taking over the kitchen in my house occurs on a weekly basis as they are teenagers who like to cook and bake for themselves.  In honor of this unique holiday and since this is an insurance blog, I thought it best to share some kitchen safety tips that I use with my children:

  • Review how to properly use a knife. Chopping slowly is perfectly fine and always cut downward and away from the body.  I would like to avoid a trip to the ER.
  • Set a timer. And then remember to turn the oven or stove burner off.  I am still working on that second part with my kids.  Taking your masterpiece out of the oven or off the burner is wonderful, but leaving the oven on or having a pan on the stovetop with nothing in it is not wise.  Fire prevention is key.
  • Be alert. Pay attention at all times when cooking or baking.  Burning yourself is anothe reason I hope to avoid the emergency room.
  • Don’t use oil if you are home alone. I do not allow my children to cook with oil if my husband or I are not home.  According to the NFPA, frying is the greatest risk of a cooking fire and unattended cooking is a leading factor in home cooking fires.  Kids can easily get distracted when cooking (hello cellphone), so take away that risk and save the oil for when an adult is home.

I think I’ll celebrate Kids Take Over the Kitchen Day and have my children make my husband and I a terrific dinner.  Perhaps you too can enjoy some time in the kitchen with your family.  And always remember to be safe while doing so.

HeadshotKaren Morrone

Karen is the Marketing & Communications Manager for MAX where she manages content marketing and social media.  When she’s not at the office, Karen can be found transporting her children to soccer and other after-school activities.  In her “spare time”, you can find her volunteering at scouts, tending to her garden, or baking treats.

Photo by Joelk75