Mario Paura presents Pope Francis with Canadian donation for Italian earthquake relief

January 15, 2018

The idea of excellence in the service of others is a core value of Stikeman Elliott. This December, our motto was put into action by Mario Paura, Head of the Real Estate Group in Toronto.

As a founding member of the advisory committee and a representative of The Italy Earthquake Relief Fund (TIERF), Mario was invited to meet with Science for Life and Pope Francis in order to present them with a very generous donation. Following the four earthquakes that devastated the areas of Abruzzo, Lazio and Marche in central Italy a year ago, Canadians rallied together to raise $1.3M for the fund. The money was used to purchase two mobile hospital units, equipped with 2 rooms, x-ray, imaging and other sophisticated medical equipment in order to serve devastated areas, and respond to future disasters.

 “It was an extremely proud moment for me to be among a small group representing Canadians before His eminence,” said Mario.

At the presentation and blessing of the vehicles, his Holiness told Mario and a private audience how touched he was by the generosity of Canadians reaching out to help so many so far away.

A matching donation of $1.3M was also made by the Federal Government. Also inspired by the generous contribution made by TIERF and our Government, the World Bank is looking to build on this philanthropic example set by Canadians to fund additional mobile hospitals to help serve Central Africa and the thousands there in need of basic healthcare, a cause very near and dear to Pope Francis.