Big Brothers Big Sisters benefit from sponsors after event cancellation

April 20, 2020   ·   0 Comments

By Brian Lockhart

They may have been forced to cancel their biggest fundraiser of the year, but Big Brothers Big Sisters of Dufferin and District still managed to raise close to half of their goal, thanks to sponsors who fulfilled their obligations after the Bowl for Kids Sake event was put on hold.

The event was supposed to have taken place at the Best Western Inn and Suites in Orangeville on Friday, March 27, and Sunday, March 29. However, the current corona virus crisis put a last-minute stop to the popular virtual bowling and silent auction fundraiser.

“We had many many people signed up for it,” explained Big Brother Big Sisters of Dufferin and District executive director, Nancy Stallmach. “This would have been our fortieth year. We could sort of see where things were going and we couldn’t hold off any long and we had to make the decision to cancel.”

The event raises about one-third of the organization’s operating budget so it was a disappointment that they had to pull the plug.

However, the good news is that many corporate sponsors still came through on their pledge and participants had already raised funds through their efforts leading up to bowling night.

“We were hoping to raise $60,000,” Ms. Stallmach said. “We raised a little bit more than that last year. There is a silent auction, we have sponsors that donate to us and we have pledges from people making personal donations. Many of the sponsors have continued to sponsor us even though we couldn’t actually run the event. We had people that had already collected money. There’s still some money out there that people haven’t been able to get to us because everything’s under lock-down now. As it stands now, we have around $20,000 that has through from sponsors and donations, that we know of. People have been very kind to us.”

The organization is hoping that they will be part of the package being offered by the federal government to help non-profit organizations get through the current crisis.

The organization also had a golf tournament scheduled for June 11, which has also been put on hold for the foreseeable future.

Ms. Stallmach said they are hoping they can reschedule the tournament for later in the year.

The current social distancing situation is impacting Big Brothers Big Sisters in other ways. School programs they offer are currently not operating since schools are closed.

Also, the kids involved in the program have been unable to go on outings with their adult mentors.

“We are encouraging the mentors to continue to have contact with the child they are matched with.”

Although they can’t meet in person, mentors and kids can still remain in contact through other means.

Big Sisters Big Brothers can use some help getting through this difficult time.

You can learn more by visiting their website at:

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