I joyfully acknowledge the presence of God in my life, expressed in the form of His creation, His Son Jesus Christ and in the opportunity we each have, whatever our faith convictions, to make a meaningful difference in the lives of others. I am accountable for how, through God’s abundant grace, I live out this experience in the way I serve our clients and lead my team.
In response, the Pettit team also seeks to make a difference every year by investing its time, money and expertise in charitable projects that make a lasting difference in the lives of others, particularly in the lives of young people. To this end we are thrilled to be engaged in the following projects on a yearly basis:
Youth Unlimited GTA
For over 65 years, Youth Unlimited (Toronto YFC) has been imparting God’s love, truth and hope to young people from all walks of life regardless of race, faith, economic level, or cultural background.
Presently Youth Unlimited has 35 growing and exciting programs spread throughout the Greater Toronto Area.
The Sanfilippo Children’s Research Foundation
This is a remarkable story of family, faith and self sacrifice.
Although Elisa Linton appeared completely normal at birth, now 13 years old, Elisa is battling a rare genetic disorder called Sanfilippo Syndrome, for which there is no cure. Children with Sanfilippo Syndrome are missing an essential enzyme that breaks down sugars, resulting in a build-up in the brain and other organs, ultimately stopping development. Most children do not live to adulthood. While Sanfilippo occurs once in 24,000 births, successful research into the disease could apply directly to related genetic that affects 1 child in 5,000.
Instead of succumbing to the disease however, Elisa’s parents Randall and Elisabeth chose the road less traveled and began a foundation to share the story of their daughter and spread awareness about Sanfilippo Syndrome. Entitled “A Life For Elisa” the ultimate goal of the foundation is to raise money to fund research and hopefully find a cure – it is a daily crusade that the Linton family willingly charts. Siblings Jessica and Connor, along with their parents, have devoted their lives to helping Elisa. Their community of friends, medical specialists and local businesses have all joined in, surrounding this family with love and financial support, helping to raise almost $7 million for research since 1999.
Elisa began to regress at six years old and today struggles just to make sounds and remain mobile. But like the symbol for the foundation – a rose – Elisa’s bright eyes and brilliant smile communicate a vibrant beauty within. It is this beauty and her spirit that inspire the Linton family to continue on their journey.
Elisa died in 2016 at the age of 22; an amazing accomplishment in and of itself. But her legacy lives on in the continued work of the Foundation and in the way her life, along with that of her family has blessed thousands of supporters. The ground-breaking research methodology developed on her behalf demonstrated that there are new, innovative ways to approach research successfully in this country.
Freedom House, Haiti
The mission of Freedom House is to rescue, shelter, mentor and teach orphaned and abandoned children. Pettit Inc. assists in this endeavour through the creation of video materials that are used by this charity to tell its story internationally. Barry Pettit is now focused on assisting Freedom House’s local ministry partners in establishing a local high school in Jacmel.
In 2006 a unique partnership between Dave and Sonya Lock from Canada, Martinez Joven from Haiti and the Carlisle BIC Church in the US came together to build and fill Freedom House in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. In 2009 a second orphanage was established in Jacmel, Haiti to accommodate orphaned girls in the local community. In 2012 a third house was added to accommodate orphaned boys in Jacmel. Together these orphanages support 62 children with the goal of increasing capacity by another twelve children in the next year.