Feb. 5 – A Common Thread

05/02/2018

A Common Thread

I can’t believe my first month at Winnipeg Harvest has come and gone.

I’ve discovered so much as I’ve begun to meet and get to know the thousands of volunteers and donors that cross our threshold. It’s truly floored me to realize the wide scope of people and organizations that have made Winnipeg Harvest a part of the work they do. Both the University of Manitoba Bisons and Vegas Golden Knights are supporters and we hear personal stories of Winnipeg Harvest experiences from volunteers at Balmoral Hall and supporters in Churchill.

What really drove this home for me was an experience at a Jets game earlier this week. I sat beside a stranger and after Joel Armia scored the first Winnipeg goal we exchanged excited small talk. The conversation turned to where we worked and when I mentioned Winnipeg Harvest she laughed and told me her daughter was there that very night volunteering with her Brownies group and how excited she had been to bring in some food for the event.

I had opportunities to spend time with some significant partners of Winnipeg Harvest this week. I started at True North Sports and Entertainment where I met Kevin Donnelly, Sr. Vice President, Venues & Entertainment, and his team. Without their support, the Empty Bowl Soup-er Lunch and Celebrity Auction would not be the events they are. I also met Kory Harnum from the Manitoba Moose, who provided us with a cheque from their New Year’s Eve Tin for the Bin drive.  I made a visit to see the impressive Peak of the Market operations and met Larry McIntosh, President and CEO, and his team.  Thanks to their significant contribution, we can provide and an amazing quantity of fresh produce to our agencies. I can’t forget Jason Gray and Sandi Edie from Scotiabank who generously dropped off a cheque from their recent food drive.

I get the pleasure of meeting volunteers every day, but this week, a few stuck out to me. Henry is 86 years young and he showed me childhood pictures of him standing on his head in the middle of winter on the peak of his family barn—he was proud to share with me he was an acrobat in his youth.  I met Margaret, quiet and extremely warm, who volunteers five days a week and has been doing so for 11 years.

As I get to know the people that make Winnipeg Harvest’s heart beat, I sometimes wonder what it is that continues to draw people back here. I think it is best summed up by another long-term volunteer, Kerri, when she said, “Winnipeg Harvest is like a small town, where people of all abilities can work side by side in harmony towards a common goal.”

Winnipeg Harvest is a common thread that runs through the province of Manitoba, providing opportunities for all to participate and help those in need.

– Keren