The pandemic has put a halt to many of the Ashcroft and District Lions Club’s activities, but they are still wholeheartedly supporting a cause that is dear to their hearts: B.C.’s Easter Seals Camps.
The club is helping to promote a 50/50 online raffle that Easter Seals is running to fundraise for the camps, which are for kids and adults with disabilities. This year, because of COVID-19, there will be week-long virtual camps taking place online, as well as several planned in-person camps, including weekend family camps at Camp Squamish, Camp Shawnigan, and Camp Winfield; City Adventure Day Camps in Vancouver, Victoria, and Kelowna; and an Outdoor Adventure day camp at Camp Winfield.
“The Easter Seals camps are a huge asset to the province, and the Lions have been a supporter since their beginning,” says Sue Peters, president of the Ashcroft and District Lions Club. “With COVID, fundraising has been a challenge. The camps take a lot of upkeep. The raffle is a way of generating income to maintain and provide this valuable service.”
The local club has been supporting the Easter Seals Camps for many years, as one of the charities they provide funds to with money they raise in the community. Those fundraising efforts have been curtailed by the pandemic, which is why the club is excited to be able to join the virtual fundraiser and help raise money for the camps.
“Easter Seals Camps provide a lot of fun and skills to campers with disabilities in our community. They also provide a critical opportunity to address isolation and socialization, especially following this year’s pandemic, when so many programs and supportive services shut down.”
Raffle tickets are available for purchase by residents of British Columbia aged 19 and older. Ticket sales end at midnight on May 31, and the draw will be made live on the Easter Sales Facebook page at noon on June 1. Tickets can be purchased at https://bit.ly/3eS2uyg.
Peters says that the club is meeting virtually, and that membership is still open. “We’re always welcoming new members. We have some people who are interested in joining, but are waiting until COVID-19 subsides.” Anyone who would like to join, or find out more, can call Peters at (250) 457-0068 or Vivian Edwards at (250) 453-9077.
The pandemic hasn’t put a stop to all the club’s activities. “We’re hoping to have a barbecue at the Cache Creek market on long weekends,” says Peters. “And on May 18 we’re heading out to do a clean-up on Government Street in Ashcroft, which we sponsor as part of Adopt-a-Road.”
After being involved in the Tim Hortons Smile Cookie campaign several times in the last few years, the club is hoping to take part again, but Peters says that’s up to Tim Hortons. The club will also be holding its very popular annual Christmas raffle, with ticket sales starting in August.
The proceeds from the raffle help fund a variety of causes; in March the club donated $300 to help the organizers of the Cache Creek Easter Activities events and contests.