Brittany Robson (middle), manager at Freemans Li’l New Yorker in Lower Sackville, takes a look at some of the items money from the Kids Play Program purchases for children who are less fortunate. She was on hand at Sackville Sportwheels to make a cheque presentation for $750, half the proceeds from a New Year’s Eve performance by Jon Cyr (left), to Sportwheels owner Jeff Mayhew (right), who oversees the Kids Play program. (Healey photo)

LOWER SACKVILLE: A well-known singer in Lower Sackville has been able to use his popularity to give back to a child and family from the community.

Jon Cyr is known for his performance at a variety of local establishments, including Freeman’s Li’l New Yorker bar & grill in Lower Sackville and Beaver Bank Station on Windgate Drive in Beaver Bank.

Cyr was booked by Freeman’s to perform New Year’s Eve—with an added incentive, half of the proceeds from the event would be donated by Freeman’s to a charity of his choice. That charity was the Kids Play program through Sportwheels. After tallying it all up, the total to be donated came to $750.

Before a small crowd Jan. 6, the presentation of that cheque was made by Brittany Robson, manager at Freeman’s, to Jeff Mayhew, owner of Sportwheels for the Kids Play program.

“Jon draws quite the crowd when he performs, he’s quite popular,” said Robson. ‘I’m trying to book him now for New Year’s.”

The cheque presentation from Robson to Mayhew. Jon Cyr is also pictured. (Healey photo)

Cyr was thrilled to be able to help a family that is less fortunate.

“I think it’s a great opportunity to be able to give back to kids that are not fortunate enough to have a way into sports,” said Cyr.

Mayhew explained that Sportwheels is a for-profit social enterprise, which means that they give back a portion of everyone transaction from the community that supports them.

“If someone is driving in from Hants County, we make sure their purchase contributes back to help a local child in need in Hants County,” said Mayhew. “We do this based off of all the counties in N.S.”

The Kids Play program sees Sportwheels work with Adsum House for women and children; the IWK Foundation; Phoenix House for Youth; and several other partners they call “giving partners.”

“These Giving Partners connect us with families in need of financial assistance to keep their kids active throughout the province,” he said.

Since starting this in 2015, they have helped more than 350 kids.

The money raised by Cyr will be going to a family in the local community.

“This cheque will be going immediately to a family in the HRM area that’s going through a tough spot,” said Mayhew. “It’s really rewarding. It’s giving the business a purpose. It’s who we are and what we do.

“When you support us, we make sure it goes back to your community to help a neighbour, a friend, whoever.”

Robson said Freeman’s is all about the community.

“To be able to help a kid play a sport or get a bicycle or go in hockey, it means a lot to us,” she said. “We’ll continue to do so for however long were here.”