A special medal produced by the Royal Canadian Mint is now an award winner.
The Royal Canadian Mint’s Recognition Medal was recently awarded the Best Currency Initiative Implemented in Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic by the International Association of Currency Affairs (IACA).
“IACA’s special award is especially meaningful to our employees, who banded together to transform spare coin-making materials into positive change for communities across Canada at a very challenging time in our history,” Marie Lemay, president and chief executive officer of the Royal Canadian Mint, said in a press release.
The Recognition Medal, launched in June 2020 as an employee-led initiative, features a heart and maple leaf icon on one side and a heart on the other side.
“The maple leaf and heart as one symbolize Canadians banding together to help those in need. A complex array of micro-mirrors covering the heart creates a pulsating light effect that evokes Canada’s strong heartbeat. The second side represents our nation’s grateful spirit,” the Royal Canadian Mint says in its press release, adding. “The heart in the centre of the group symbolizes Canadians coming together in appreciation for our essential workers.”
According to the Mint, the medal was an employee-led initiative that “transformed the by-product of a circulation coin manufacturing contract into an artful, meaningful, and lasting way” of thanking frontline workers and others amid the pandemic.
“This effect proved that we could achieve strong die life and consistent quality of the optical feature on harder circulation coin products. The bi-metal coin slugs were also reshaped through a retooled blanking process to ensure proper electroplating and high-speed striking,” the Mint says.
All net proceeds from the sale of each medal were donated to Breakfast Club of Canada’s COVID-19 Emergency Fund, with the Mint raising $743,845.88.
“This recognition by our industry peers, and the response of Canadians who helped us donate so much to children in need have inspired us to do even more to help fellow Canadians still challenged by the pandemic,” the Mint says.
A total of 100,000 medals were produced and the Royal Canadian Mint says another medal will be released in the future.