Great fundraiser, but in­put needed on re­cip­i­ents

Valley Journal Advertiser - - FRONT PAGE -

On June 1 at 6: 30 p. m., Wolfville’s Mud Creek Ro­tary Club is hold­ing an im­por­tant needs as­sess­ment at the Mil­let Cen­tre in New Mi­nas. I was happy to see this event listed on the Val­ley Events web site. It is ne­ces­si­tated by the suc­cess of the club’s Toonie Toss, which is haul­ing in about $10,000 each week for the club and pro­vid­ing a prize of a sim­i­lar amount.

The in­vi­ta­tion says, “in order to make in­formed de­ci­sions around the al­lo­ca­tion of funds in the com­mu­nity, Mud Creek Ro­tary would like to iden­tify more clearly the needs around youth, se­niors and marginal­ized per­sons.” The idea for the Toonie Toss came from an­other Ro­tary club in the Mar­itimes (there are no new ideas). The Mon­tague Ro­tary Club, ac­cord­ing to mem­ber Sharon Ri­ley, part­nered with the lo­cal news­pa­per, The East­ern Graphic, to raise funds for com­mu­ni­ties in that area.

Af­ter about 18 months, Ri­ley termed her in­volve­ment one of her proud­est ac­com­plish­ments be­cause aid has gone to “more than a dozen char­i­ties in our area as well as award­ing over $263,000 in prize money.”

Mon­tague’s Toonie Snow­ball Draw has helped hos­pices, hos­pi­tals, food banks, Meals on Wheels for Se­niors, train­ing cen­ters, the lo­cal li­brary and more. Ri­ley says “more im­por­tantly, we are now the proud provider of funds for snack/lunch/ break­fast pro­grams for ev­ery school who has asked us to help in our area.”

The club also pro­vides much needed help to fam­i­lies who are deal­ing with cri­sis. Pres­i­dent Carla Mor­gan adds that Mon­tague is deal­ing with sim­i­lar amounts of money as Wolfville – their weekly prize is about $10,000.

Our news­pa­per “part­nered” with the Mud­creek Club when the lottery started in the spring of 2013, but we have not had the same in­put as the East­ern Graphic.

In the be­gin­ning, six lo­cal pro­grams got cash con­tri­bu­tions: L’Arche Home­fires, Carey Me, Pal­lia­tive Care in the Home, lo­cal food banks, school break­fast pro­grams, the VON and chil­dren’s li­brary books.

At some point that changed and I wasn’t able to find out when; how­ever, both the AVR and Magic 97 web­sites con­tinue to re­fer to the pro­ceeds go­ing back to the lo­cal area while “sup­port­ing six Kings and Hants County char­i­ta­ble or­ga­ni­za­tions.”

It is my un­der­stand­ing that much of the pro­ceeds lately have been plugged into the Ro­tary Clubs of Kings County Char­i­ta­ble Foun­da­tion, which be­gan in 2007. Again, ac­cord­ing to the foun­da­tion web­site, it has ac­cu­mu­lated more than $950,000.

The foun­da­tion’s do­na­tion his­tory cer­tainly in­cludes lo­cal char­i­ties, but also sup­port for causes like Pak­istan Flood Relief and Op­er­a­tion Life­saver, which is a pub­lic ed­u­ca­tion pro­gram de­signed to heighten pub­lic aware­ness of the po­ten­tial haz­ards of rail/high­way grade cross­ings.

What got me think­ing about trans­parency and the pub­lic good was a re­cent letter in the Cape Bre­ton Post about the Chase the Ace phe­nom­e­non, which has pulled in millions.

John Inch of Glace Bay wrote, “The bot­tom line is that close to $10 mil­lion was taken out of the lo­cal econ­omy and no con­sum­ables were used up.”

Inch went on to say that the lottery “con­cept, while hav­ing the best of in­ten­tions, is do­ing much more harm than good. It re­ally needs to be rethought by peo­ple a lot more knowl­edge­able than I.”

Ob­vi­ously peo­ple like to take a gam­ble – there are at least three Chase the Ace lotteries now in the Val­ley. When piles of cash flow in, it is right and good to see open­ness cul­ti­vated by ser­vice clubs.

There was a tragic fire in Fort McMur­ray, so the Grade 4 class col­lected money from each class at WFDS.

The Grade 4 students dec­o­rated do­na­tion cans and made posters. They wrote on each can “Do­nate to the Red Cross” and “Save Fort McMur­ray” and “Give a Help­ing Hand”. A can was put in ev­ery class­room for two weeks for students to put their do­na­tions in. They also drew pic­tures of Fort McMur­ray fires. The posters and draw­ings were put in the gym to draw at­ten­tion to the fundraiser. There was $342.45 raised!

The Doc­tor’s Nova Sco­tia Youth Run was held May 21. Mrs. Crouse and Mr. Austen took the WFDS Run Club. There was a two-kilo­me­tre route and a 4 km route. There were more than 4,300 peo­ple run­ning…imag­ine how many peo­ple did the Bluenose in to­tal! Some peo­ple were push­ing strollers, and some were wear­ing tu­tus (like Mrs. Crouse). Ev­ery­one got a t-shirt and a medal. There was food af­ter the run for kids and even par­ents. Af­ter the run we all met by the food court. Then we took a pic­ture in the Sco­tia Bank Cen­ter. We al­most lost a class­mate, but we found him! Phew! And it was FUN!

As the many years go by, Wind­sor Forks still con­tin­ues to do Head for the Cure hair do­na­tions. Many students, staff and fam­ily mem­bers signed up to cut and do­nate their hair to the Cana­dian Can­cer So­ci­ety through the Pan­tene Beau­ti­ful Lengths pro­gram. The chil­dren that par­tic­i­pated in the event do­nated at least eight inches to make wigs and hair­pieces for peo­ple un­der­go­ing treat­ments for can­cer.

When you do­nate your hair, you sit in a chair and wait for the hair cut­ter to come and cut your pony­tail off. When she or he comes they cut ex­actly eight inches of your hair, slip it into a small bag and you’re done.

On May 27, the hair do­na­tions were sent to Pan­tene to be made into wigs and then give to the peo­ple need­ing them. I’ll bet they can’t wait for them to ar­rive.

The rea­son we do this is so that peo­ple who have lost their hair to can­cer can wear re­al­is­tic look­ing wigs made from real hair. This how we are giv­ing back and reaching out to oth­ers that have strug­gled with can­cer.

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