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NEWMONT steps up during pandemic

Jul 10, 2020

By Kevin Vincent
The pandemic of 2020 dramatically altered almost every facet of life - but one aspect that remains unchanged is the corporate generosity of companies like Newmont. The company’s Porcupine division stepped up its commitment to community support in the first half of the year with multiple investments stemming from Newmont’s multi-million-dollar COVID-19 response fund.
On April 9th, Newmont announced the establishment of a US$20 million fund to help host communities, governments and employees combat the COVID-19 pandemic. The Newmont Global Community Support Fund builds upon other local contributions and efforts the company implemented around the same time.
“Our purpose to create value and improve lives through sustainable and responsible mining is more relevant now than ever before,” said CEO Tom Palmer. “The strength of our portfolio of world-class assets across top tier jurisdictions underpins the financial flexibility to take care of our employees, communities and shareholders. I am proud of the way our employees have responded to these challenging times,” he added.
Newmont partnered with local governments, medical institutions, charities and non-governmental organizations to target funds towards addressing the greatest needs with a view to serving as a catalyst for long-term resiliency and future community development. To ensure that the fund supports communities in a robust and meaningful way, Newmont worked diligently with local governments to design a plan that focused on three key areas: to ensure that the support is most impactful to the communities, namely, employee and community health, food security and local economic resilience.

Newmont donates to Tmmins Hospital
First Nations companies like NIIWIN are ongoing examples of the support Newmont provides. Niiwin General Partnership Inc. (Niiwin) was founded to create opportunities for economic and business development in the mining sector. In November 2014, Goldcorp Porcupine Gold Mines (Newmont’s predecessor)  signed a Resource Development Agreement with four First Nation communities (Flying Post, Matachewan, Mattagami and Wahgoshig First Nation). The Resource Development Agreement established a framework for continued consultation on existing and future operations in the Timmins area and defines long-term benefits for the four First Nations.
The agreement includes provisions for training, employment, and business opportunities. With unique access to business opportunities at PGM, the signatory First Nations arranged to become equal partners in developing a general contracting venture with a mandate of collaboration.
Recently announced Newmont Porcupine, started rehabilitation work at the historical Aunor A tailings facility in Timmins. The project is a collaboration with local contractor Niiwin General Partnership. Work started in May and will run until December 2020.
The tailings facility is about 500 metres northwest of Buffalo-Ankerite.
“The rehabilitation work will include regrading of the historical tailings, placement of aggregate material and installation of a High-density Polyethylene (HDPE) cover,” reads a notice from Newmont Porcupine.
In an effort to blunt the impacts of COVID-19 on the Timmins business community, Newmont and the Timmins Chamber of Commerce announced the launch of a program to support small businesses through a $250,000 donation from Newmont Porcupine.
The set of initiatives within the program are in response to the city and Chamber’s recommendations from a Joint Business Continuity and Recovery Task Force, established in early April of this year.
The new program included four critical components to assist local small businesses and organizations, with less than $2 million in annual sales, who were deemed non-essential in March. These businesses have not been generating revenues and will subsequently incur extraordinary expenses in order to comply with new requirements as a result of COVID-19.
The establishment of the Timmins Emergency Response Loan for Businesses in the amount of $200,000. A $100,000 investment from Newmont Porcupine is being matched by The Venture Centre to create the $200,000 fund. The fund, administered by partner The Venture Centre, is intended to provide timely assistance to businesses that are either ineligible for Provincially or Federally established programs or require bridge financing until funds from those programs become available.
A Timmins Professional Services Fund that will provide micro-consultations, valued at $40,000, for small businesses without staff resources in certain professional services. This fund is available to eligible businesses with under $300,000 in wages and/or revenue so that they may assess their eligibility for programs like the Federal Canadian Emergency Wage Subsidy. Newmont Porcupine contributed $20,000 to launch this and MNP LLP matched their contribution.
A $30,000 boost to the Chamber’s #finditINtimmins campaign to direct shoppers to support local businesses, given that many local consumers have been reoriented to shopping online.
“At the heart of this program is a focus on ensuring businesses are leveraging all announced resources in an effort to reduce the risk and will be open to the entire business community — administered by the Chamber and supported by The Venture Centre, MNP LLP and Newmont Porcupine,” stated Val Venneri, President of the Chamber.
Bryan Neeley, Sustainability and External Relations Manager with Newmont Porcupine, was on hand during the announcement and said, “Newmont Porcupine is in a unique position compared to the rest of the company’s operations around the world in that we operate directly in the heart of this city. Newmont’s partnership with the Chamber to support small and medium sized businesses is consistent with our company’s purpose to create value and improve lives through sustainable and responsible mining.”
“Newmont Porcupine remains a reliable partner to the people of Timmins and Chapleau and we are proud to collaborate with The Chamber to support the health of the businesses that support our community, our employees and their families,” he added.
Newmont Porcupine also donated $40,000 to the Timmins & District Hospital Foundation in their ongoing efforts to support the community in managing the pandemic.
Various items were identified as a need during this time and Newmont Porcupine has offered to fund some of those purchases.
The $40,000 donation was used to purchase two portable negative pressure units costing approximately $15,000 each and two CO2 monitors costing $5,000 each.
The portable air purification systems allow the conversion of a typical hospital room to a sterile room under infection control/isolation periods.
The CO2 monitors are used in the emergency department to monitor the level of carbon dioxide in the blood stream. Coupled with other monitoring equipment, the units will make it easier for healthcare teams to make quick, informed decisions.
“We want to do our part to support the fight against the pandemic and these donations to the TADH will directly benefit our communities, employees and neighbors,” said Neeley.
Barb McCormick, manager of donor relations, added, “We greatly appreciate the support from Newmont Porcupine, they are huge community supporters and have stepped up to help during this difficult time.

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