In late 2004, a child was born in Collingwood, Ontario, Canada, with a rare abnormality called omphalocele, meaning a sac containing abdominal organs had developed outside her body. The condition requires several surgeries as the child grows, most of which are not covered by medical insurance in Canada.
Bessie Saunders, a charter member of the Collingwood Quota club, was touched by the family’s plight and worked with her own family to organize a Costume Carnival fund-raiser to help them. First, she collaborated with a local high school for youthful volunteer energy; then, she rallied the support of her Quota club.
The Quota club secured the use of a local senior center for the event at a very low rental rate. While students and staff provided entertainment and ran game booths at the fund-raiser, club members ran a refreshment booth stocked with baked goods and drinks. In the process, the club recognized some GREAT IDEAS that could benefit any Quota service effort:
- Tapping into the youthful energy of high school students and their teachers provides enthusiastic volunteers from a broad spectrum of the community.
- Involving a school automatically increases attention for the event among the targeted audience for such an event—young families.
- Creating a theme for a fund-raiser helps organizers focus.
- Renting a community-owned facility is much less expensive than a commercial one.
- Participating in one aspect of the fund-raiser (the refreshment stand) allowed the club to provide service excellence by concentrating efforts.
- Joining in an event with young people allows Quota members to model commitment to service.
At the end of the day, the club donated Can.$1,000 to the family in need and raised Quota’s profile in Collingwood. And the local women’s shelter enjoyed the leftover baked goods, dropped off on the volunteers’ way home.