Robert has seen first-hand how tragedy can be turned into something that helps others. It’s been an important lesson and one that he and his family value and have channeled into Rally in the Ravine.
In 2015, Robert’s daughter Emily lost her best friend Madeline (Maddie) Grace German Coulter to depression. Maddie had been part of the Agouri household for years, and the tragic loss was devastating.
“I Rally for three reasons. One, in memory of Maddie. Two, for my daughter Emily who lost her best friend, and three, for the unknown young person who will benefit from the mental health supports accessible to him or her through the Maddie Project. That’s why I Rally and why I always will.”
Driven to honour Maddie’s memory, Robert has been a strong advocate of The Maddie Project, a grassroots movement established in 2015 by Maddie’s mom Nicole German, Chair of North York General Foundation’s Board of Governors. The Maddie Project has a clear mission that no youth or their family should suffer from depression or mental health concerns without help.
Robert is participating in Rally in the Ravine for the first time this year, taking on the role of captain of Team Maddie Project. Fittingly, funds raised from this year’s event will support youth mental health, a cause close to Robert and the rest of The Maddie Project team.
“To see Nicole harness her family’s grief and turn it into a movement to help others is nothing short of miraculous. To have the capacity to see beyond your own pain is truly inspiring. The least we can do is dedicate ourselves to help in any way we can. Whatever way she needs us to pitch in, we’re there.”