YBSP Charity Yacht Party: Bay Street Has Heart

June 20, 2011

Text by Holly Archer.

Photos by Kalynn Friesen.

Last Saturday, junior level Toronto financiers hosted Charity Yacht Party: Bay Street Has Heart, a networking fundraiser.

The Young Bay Street Professionals (YBSP) set sail on a 75-foot yacht off of Queen’s Quay East, with the sun slowly setting on the hazy cityscape.

Attendees were encouraged to wear red in honour of the fundraising effort for the Heart and Stroke Foundation. Most women opted for red strapless cocktail dresses, red cigarette pants paired with a crisp blouse, or neutral sheaths with a red accent, such as a belt. Many men chose a bright red accent like a grey suit paired with a neutral shirt and a vibrant red tie.

The event was catered, with many healthy options, including a feta and cucumber salad.  Even the dessert was healthy – caramalized bananas and walnuts, coupled with ginger snaps.

Derrick Fung, a 23-year-old analyst for CIBC World Markets in foreign exchange trading and the founder of YBSP, spoke with FAJO about organizing the event. Fung says the idea of a group that connected young people came to him while he was living away from home.

“I lived in New York for six months, and there were a lot of groups that connected young people,” he says. When he came back to his hometown Toronto, he realized there was no resource like that for this city.

He founded YBSP with four other working professionals, who met during job interviews on Bay Street in the summer of 2009. The five co-ordinators agreed to start an organization that aimed to “promote networking and philanthropy among young business people in Toronto,” adds Fung.

In 2010, their yacht cruise raised $1,200 for the Heart and Stroke Foundation, and Fung predicts they will double that this year. He says co-ordinating the sponsors for the event and the raffle were easy to organize, especially since the Heart and Stroke Foundation were on board with them.

In the future, the YBSP group is planning to organize events with a networking focus. Fung says he hopes to organize a panel of economists, where junior level executives can meet prominent CEOs.

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