More than a month after the devastating earthquake in Haiti, the public outpouring of support shows no sign of letting up. Residents of the townships continue to hold fundraising events in support of the impoverished nation, where some 230,000 people died and another million were left homeless following the Jan. 12 disaster.
Gale set to flip for the cause
For the past three or four years, the Gale Presbyterian Church has organized a Pancake Supper, but this year, organizer Dave Chalmers will be flipping for a cause. The event, happening Feb. 23 at 5 p.m., is being held in memory of Elmira resident and local volunteer Yvonne Martin, with proceeds going towards the Haitian Earthquake Relief Fund through the Presbyterian World Service and Development. Chalmers expects to flip between 800 and 1,000 pancakes for the traditionally popular event.
“It’s a big community event. People have really come together for this in the past and being able to combine that success with fundraising for the people in Haiti just made sense.”
Sing a song for Haiti
The Commercial Tavern in Maryhill will be doing its part by offering a day of karaoke in exchange for a donation to help Haiti victims. On Mar. 14, aspiring stars or those who simply sing in the shower can make a donation to the Red Cross, Salvation Army, Mennonite Central Committee or World Vision and then get up on stage and sing a song. Feeling a little stage fright? Performers will be on hand to belt out one of your favourites in return for a donation. The event runs from noon to 9 p.m. For more information, call Pat at 519-743-3101.
Making the cut
On Mar.1, stylists at Guys and Dolls Hair and Spa at the Birdland Plaza in Elmira will be volunteering their time and doing haircuts for customers for only $20. Customers will also be provided with refreshments, and all the money raised will be donated to the MCC.
PIB staff jumps into action
Members of staff at Programmed Insurance Brokers in Elmira were given the opportunity to sport casual dress at work in return for a fee of two dollars destined for the Canadian Red Cross. Along with a raffle for a gift certificate and a hugely successful bake sale, the company was able to raise more than $5,000, which will be matched by the Canadian government, providing $10,000 for victims of the earthquake.
Cathy Armstrong, a member of the social committee at the company, said that although PIB sponsors other charitable organizations throughout the year, they mobilize quickly to create emergency funding if necessary.
“As soon as the earthquake happened in Haiti, people at the office started talking, ‘Are we going to do something?’ and we immediately started putting our thinking caps on and coming up with some ideas.”
Additionally, the disability department of the insurance company raised more than $1,700 on their own and has chosen to donate the funds to Friends of Haiti, a charity which the late Yvonne Martin supported.
“I am a registered nurse so I hope that they get all the medical equipment and the necessary antibiotics,” noted Armstrong. “We need to be doing some damage control and help those who are left to continue to survive.”
Auction, raffle nets $1,700 in Wellesley
The Township of Wellesley staff had a fundraiser for the victims of Haiti, holding both a silent auction and raffle over the past few weeks and has raised more than $1,700 for the Mennonite Central Committee.
The raffle and auction consisted of items donated by suppliers and township staff, including tickets to a Kitchener Rangers game, tickets to a Toronto Rock game, some power tools and jewelry, among other items.
Bonnie Kroetsch, a staff member in charge of accounts receivable for the township, said that they were not sure what type of response to expect as they didn’t have much time to advertise their initiatives, but they were pleased with the outcome.
The township office is also registered as a drop off location for the Mennonite Central Committee’s “Operation Cooperation” relief kits items.
MCC continues to prepare relief kits
The individual and collective efforts of members of the Woolwich and Wellesley communities have not gone unnoticed, and a representative from the Mennonite Central Committee, only one of the organizations being supported by members of our community, says the MCC is delighted at the community’s response. Hundreds of volunteers have been busy packing white plastic 20-litre pails with towels, tooth brushes, soap and other hygiene products that MCC will send to Haitian people who lost homes and livelihoods quake.
“We have been overwhelmed by the number of individuals and community groups who responded to the need, both financially and materially and who then offered to give of their time as well,” says Trevor Adams, MCC Ontario’s material resources coordinator. More than 2,200 kits have already been assembled and many of them were loaded into a shipping container Tuesday. This was the first shipment from MCC Ontario destined for Haiti and it was loaded with more than 1,500 relief kits and sheets as well as handmade knotted comforters made by various Ontario church groups and other volunteers.
The MCC will continue to collect relief kits at the temporary warehouse at 50 Ottawa St. S., Kitchener (corner of Ottawa and Charles) until Mar. 1.