Alzheimer Society of Nova Scotia

YOU, Celebrating Champions

In Uncategorized on October 8, 2013 at 1:58 pm

Champion-for-dementia

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My favourite part of my job is talking to people.  That would not shock anyone who knows me as it is obvious that I like to talk. I truly enjoy getting to know people and hearing their stories. Working for the Alzheimer Society of Nova Scotia has exposed me to many interesting and wonderful people. As I work on my most recent campaign I realize that some of these people are true Champions of this Society. There are many different types of Champions, today I want to celebrate those dedicated fundraisers who year after year return to our organization for the same campaign, the same volunteer experience, without question, without pause, without expectation of accolades.

September is the official launch of our Coffee Break™ fundraiser. This is my first year coordinating the event and as I navigate my way through the procedures and work plans set out by my predecessors, I am getting to know the people involved. My work, thus far, has revealed two amazing Champions that I would like to celebrate in this blog post:  The Tiverton Super Seniors and Gordon MacNeil.

The Tiverton Super Seniors are known for supporting many charitable organizations.  They are a generous group of Nova Scotians who are dedicated to making their community of Tiverton a better place. For 15 years they have unwaveringly supported the Society by hosting a Coffee Break™ fundraiser. Not only do they support us by fundraising, but they spread the word to their community about what the Society has to offer Nova Scotians living with dementia. Jack Pyne, Treasurer of the Super Seniors, had this to say about their Coffee Break™ event, “A good time was had by all and we were pleased to have raised money for such a worthwhile cause. This is the 15th year we have hosted a Coffee Break and we certainly plan to do it again next year”.

Gordon MacNeil has just hosted his 12th Coffee Break™ at the Mayflower mall in Sydney.  Every year he is one of the first people to call us in anticipation of the event. MacNeil has spent years volunteering and entertaining residents in Nursing Homes and was struck by the effects of dementia on many of the people with whom he interacted. It became important for him to do something to help. And 12 years later he is still setting up a table at his local mall. For Gordon, an important part of the event is to disseminate information about the disease. He wants people to know more about it and arms himself with many brochures and pamphlets to hand out. This year was made even more special for Gordon when a family of young children decided to help. They set up a lemonade stand and gave Gordon all their profits to help with his fundraising. Truly a touching moment for all of us involved to witness the effect Gordon has on his community and the generosity of these young children.

These are just two examples of the Champions we have working for us. They do not want praise or fanfare, but they deserve it and this is just one way of giving them a small amount of recognition. When I speak with these Champions and hear their stories and the lengths they go to to support our organization, I feel overwhelmed and humbled. They give their time and energy because they believe in what we do and they care about Nova Scotians living with dementia. All they want to do is help.  And all I can say is Thank YOU!

Here is a link to learn more about Gordon MacNeil’s 2013 Coffee Break™ event as published in the Cape Breton Post on September 17, 2013.  http://www.capebretonpost.com/News/Local/2013-09-17/article-3393840/Glace-Bay-man-to-hold-12th-annual-Alzheimers-coffee-break-at-Mayflower-Mall-on-Sept.-27/1

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