Frequently Asked Questions about the Walk for the Centre

I want to walk for the Centre! What do I need to do?

1. Register!
2. Get sponsors and collect donations!
3. Walk on October 15!

How do I register?

You can register online using our web form or in person on the day of the event using our Sponsor Form. Either way, registration is simple. We just need your name, email address, team (if applicable), and whether you want to walk the long route or short route.
Registration helps us know how many people to expect on the day of the Walk. It also helps us gauge how many people in the community support the work of the Centretown Emergency Food Centre.

How do I get sponsors and collect donations?

Sponsors are people who make donations to the Food Centre on behalf of you or your team. Ask your friends, your family, your coworkers, your neighbours, your classmates, your book club, your church members, anyone you know!  Sponsors are not walking with you – they’re sponsoring your walk.
Use the Sponsor Form to keep track of your sponsors.  Mailing addresses allow CCSAC to send out charitable receipt directly to your sponsors with a note of thanks. CCSAC is a registered charity and will issue charitable receipts for any donation of $10 or more.
Donations can be made by cash or cheque made out to CCSAC or online through CanadaHelps. The money all goes to the same place: the Centretown Emergency Food Centre. We find it’s easiest to collect the donation immediately from your sponsors rather than trying to chase them down again.

How do I walk on October 15?

Come to Jean Pigott Hall at Ottawa City Hall at 1:30pm on Sunday, October 15. Bring your completed Sponsor Form, all the donations you’ve collected, comfortable shoes for the weather, and an umbrella or rain jacket if the forecast calls for rain. Drop your Sponsor Form and donations off with one of our volunteers at the Registration Tables, then enjoy the musical program until the Walk kicks off at 2pm. A kilted piper will lead us out of City Hall. Marshals will help direct you along the short route to Parliament Hill or the long route along the Rideau Canal. Both routes end at City Hall, where there will be refreshments and a photo booth to commemorate the day.

Which route should I walk?

Up to you! The Short Route is about 1.5km and takes about 30 minutes to complete. It runs north from Ottawa City Hall along Elgin Street to Parliament Hill, where the RCMP will escort the group around the front lawn. Then it’s back to City Hall. There are no stairs on this route, and it is designed to be universally accessible.
The Long Route is about 3.5km and takes about an hour to complete. It runs south from Ottawa City Hall along the Rideau Canal’s Western Pathway. There will be a turn-around just before Pretoria Bridge to head back to City Hall. It includes just a few stairs to get from Queen Elizabeth Drive to the Canal Pathway.
Route Maps are available here.

Does the Long Route include stairs?

Yes, but just a few. Our original 2016 route along the Ottawa River included a stair climb that was challenging for some walkers. Due to flooding in Spring 2017, the Ottawa River Pathway is closed and we have changed our route. The revised Long Route runs along the Western Rideau Canal Pathway to Pretoria Bridge and back again (see route map here). There is a small stairway (4-5 steps) transitioning from Queen Elizabeth Drive to the pathway.

What if it rains?

The Walk for the Centre is a rain-or-shine event. Bring umbrellas, rain jackets, ponchos, wellies, whatever you need to stay warm and dry should the weather threaten. Registration takes place indoors at Ottawa City Hall, and there will be refreshments there after the Walk as well.

Is there free parking?

You can park under City Hall for a flat-rate of $2 for the day, or you can try your luck with free on-street parking around City Hall.

Can I collect donations of food or toiletries?

Absolutely! Donations of non-perishable food items or toiletries allow the Food Centre to spend more of their resources on perishable foods such as meat, margarine, bread, and fresh fruits and vegetables. The most useful and needed items are peanut butter, canned tuna or salmon, canned soups and stews, canned vegetables, canned beans (including baked beans, kidney beans, and black beans), cereal, dry pasta and pasta sauce, Kraft dinner, toothpaste and toothbrushes, and toilet paper. Charitable receipts will not be issued for in-kind donations.

Do I still need a Sponsor Form if I register online?

Yep! Online registration tells us you’re walking, but it doesn’t tell us who your sponsors are or how we can send them charitable receipts for their donations. You can download and print a Sponsor Form here.

Do I still need a Sponsor Form if I register online and all my sponsors donate online?

Nope! Online donations are handled by CanadaHelps, which issues charitable receipts to all donors and sponsors. If you’ve registered online, that’s all we need. Just check in with one of our volunteers at the Registration Tables so we can confirm your attendance.

I have another question. Who can I ask?

Ask us! Use the Contact page on our website or send us an email at We’ll try to answer your question as soon as we can.