In 1964, a group of young Chinese Canadians convened to discuss the persistent challenges faced by the Chinese community. Brought together by Rev. Ronald Con, minister of Toronto’s Chinese Presbyterian Church, they established the Mon Sheong Foundation to promote Chinese culture through the pursuit of worthwhile projects. Taking its name from Lord Mengchang (also translated as Lord Mon Sheong; a man of legendary generosity who lived in China around 300 BC), the Foundation officially registered with the Ontario government in 1965. Aside from being assigned its charity registration number in 1967, it was also recognized by the federal government that year, cementing Mon Sheong’s status as the first Chinese charitable organization in Canada.

Mon Sheong’s board of directors comprises approximately twenty philanthropists from business, healthcare, and other professional backgrounds. The Foundation also operates under the distinguished honorary patronage of Hon. Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, and her predecessors.

Board of Director Meeting

Founded in 1968, Mon Sheong Foundation Chinese School is one of the largest private Chinese schools in Canada. With three convenient campuses and online courses, we provide Cantonese and Putonghua classes, mathematics instruction and Chinese Immersion Summer Camp. Classes are taught by qualified and experienced teachers, all of whom are college or university graduates from Hong Kong, Canada, or Mainland China.

There are thirteen levels of instruction in the Chinese program for children aged 3 and above. Our curriculum aims to not only educate students to read, write, and speak the language, but we also seek to immerse them in the Chinese culture, helping them understand the value of Chinese heritage within Canada’s multicultural society.

Chinese school student writes chinese letters

The Mon Sheong Youth Group was founded in 1969 with Victor Wong serving as its first president and Margaret Mui its first advisor. To celebrate its launch, the Foundation organized a skating party at Nathan Phillips Square. The Youth Group’s objective was to bring together the Chinese youth in the community, allowing them to meet and get to know one another while engaging in meaningful work; it also provided them with opportunities to develop leadership and teamwork skills. In 2002, the Youth Chapter (for individuals aged 14 to 17) and Young Leaders’ Chapter (ages 18 to 30) were introduced, making it easier to create dedicated programs and activities for high school students, postsecondary students, and young professionals. Working under the guidance of a sub-committee, these two chapters meet regularly to contribute to Mon Sheong’s charitable projects in a spirit of fun, goodwill, and community.

Volunteers are important pillars of the Mon Sheong Foundation. From serving on its board of directors and various committees to helping out at the Foundation’s senior facilities, Chinese school, and fundraising activities, the integral role they play at every level cannot be overstated.

outh group dragon boat red panda team

Opened in 1975, the longstanding Mon Sheong Home for the Aged on D’Arcy Street in downtown Toronto is the first Home for the Chinese community in Ontario. The completed expansion in 1999 increased the home’s capacity from 65 to 105 care beds.

As the demand for senior services continues to rise drastically, we built the Richmond Hill location in 2003, offering 192 care beds and the Scarborough location in 2004, offering 160 care beds. The Stouffville location, opened in 2021, offers 320 beds.

The facilities provide quality care services for seniors, physically or mentally disabled individuals, and those with dementia. Our Homes meet regularly with our residents’ families to communicate and discuss the needs of the residents.

Ontario’s Ministry of Long-Term Care allocated 768 new long-term care bed licences to Mon Sheong Foundation in March 2021. The bed licences will be split among three new locations: Markham (160 beds), Richmond Hill (288 beds), and Scarborough (320 beds). The Markham facility will be a senior care campus, housing a 160-bed long-term care centre, Mon Sheong Court, and a Personal Support Worker training facility.

Mon Sheong Home for the Aged, Richmond Hill, Scarborough Long-Term Care Centres and Stouffville Long-Term Care Centre have received the three-year accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), its highest level of quality care excellence, signifying our commitment and determination in providing excellent care service to both residents and their families.

Long Term Care Centre senior chats with registered nurse

To meet the needs of seniors living in York Region and to help lessen the burden on their caregivers, the Mon Sheong Adult Day Program was launched at the Richmond Hill Long-Term Care Centre in 2008. By engaging the participants in a variety of activities, the program looks to help them maintain and improve their functioning ability while supporting their caregivers by providing relief, counselling, and education, reducing or delaying the need for around-the-clock care.

In addition to hot meals, the program also offers a number of client-focused activities tailored to their social, mental, and physical needs. Care services such as basic health monitoring, group physiotherapy sessions, dietary consultations, and sensory stimulation activities promote independence, health and wellness, and a positive lifestyle among the participants.

Adult day program seniors are happy to attend workshop

Recognizing the need to reach out to even more seniors around the community, the Foundation established its two Mon Sheong Community & Volunteer Services Centres in Scarborough and downtown Toronto. They provide a welcoming place for Mon Sheong’s volunteers, Youth Group members, and seniors around the community to gather, socialize, and build meaningful friendships, and also offer an extensive list of programs, seminars, and recreational courses to cater to the interests of its visitors. Participants are invited to join the Senior Circle, the Centres’ dedicated club for members aged 50 and older. Friends of the Senior Circle are not only able to enjoy the Centres’ facilities and activities, but are also eligible to receive discounts on any recreational course fees.

Vlunteer hands out gift to seniors

Completed in 2008, Scarborough Mon Sheong Court is the first independent living senior apartment project of the Mon Sheong Foundation, enabling more seniors to enjoy a tailored quality lifestyle. Situated next to the Mon Sheong Scarborough Long-Term Care Centre, its 242 life lease suites provide an unparalleled housing option for seniors aged 55 and older. Each Mon Sheong Court features a 24-hour monitoring system and an emergency medical alert call system installed in each unit and along the corridors. The suites are thoughtfully designed to suit the specialized needs of seniors while the building’s amenities include a multifunction activity hall, a well-equipped recreation centre, a card room, a library, an elegantly furnished dining room with available meal delivery services, and an on-site clinic and pharmacy, allowing the residents to conveniently do what they want without having to step outside.

Following the success of Scarborough Mon Sheong Court, Richmond Hill Mon Sheong Court was completed in 2014, providing 353 units to the community. And the first phase of Markham Mon Sheong Court, located on Sun Yat-Sen Avenue, welcomed its first residents in 2016, adding more than 460 units; completion of the second phase is expected in 2018.

Scarborough Mon Sheong Court residents are singing

The Richmond Hill and Markham Mon Sheong Care Complexes house the Foundation’s Assisted Living, Private Care, and Charity Care initiatives to help alleviate the problem of insufficient long-term care beds being available to the public.

Mon Sheong Private Care is an innovative new service for the community. Because it is not funded by the government, applicants are not subject to the government’s lengthy waiting lists for admission. Richmond Hill Private Care comprises 92 care beds, and Markham Private Care comprises 50 beds, available for both short-term stays and longer-term accommodation. Regular amenities include ninety minutes of individually-tailored professional care services each day, nutritious meals and snacks, and 24-hour nursing personnel on duty.

The Foundation’s self-funded Charity Care service also receives no government funding. It enables seniors who require financial support and are waiting for a long-term care bed to receive the appropriate medical and support services, providing caregiver relief and a temporary alternative for seniors and families with pressing needs. Applicants only have to undergo Mon Sheong’s health and financial assessments to qualify for admission; however because the number of available beds is limited, each applicant can only stay for up to one month. Evidently, for both Private Care and Charity Care to carry on, both initiatives require the enthusiastic support of the community.

Private Care residents are playing board game together

Over the years, the Mon Sheong Foundation has continuously evolved to keep up with the changing needs of our society. Even as our four long-term care centres and other initiatives are doing their part to benefit the community, we know we must relentlessly improve to maintain our high quality standards and expand the scope of our services. At the same time, your generous support is urgently required. We are counting on your partnership as we continue “Sharing and Caring with You by Our Side”.