The Equality Project’s executive director Shelley Magwood (centre) with (from left) Interior Savings employees Tara Konrad, Gail Nelson, Brenda Cahoon, and Karma Kubbernus on this year’s Day of Difference. Photo by Barbara Roden.

Interior Savings makes a ‘Day of Difference’ for local organizations

The Equality Project and the Sage and Sands Pony Club got some welcome volunteer help.

On October 19 two local groups—The Equality Project in Cache Creek and the Sage and Sands Pony Club near Boston Flats—benefited from the fourth annual Interior Savings’ Day of Difference. Some 500 Interior Savings employees around the region rolled up their sleeves to help local organizations that need a hand; and employees of the Ashcroft insurance office and credit union joined in the effort.

The Day of Difference is when the Credit Union celebrates all those who are making a positive impact in their members’ lives and in their communities. “As a co-operative, we know the power that comes from a community working together,” says Interior Savings CEO Kathy Conway. “Our Day of Difference is not only an opportunity to lend a hand to those helping to make our communities strong, but also to celebrate what it means to be local.”

Karma Kubbernus, the manager of Interior Savings Credit Union in Ashcroft, says that there was a lot on social media and in the paper when they were looking for applicants, and that staff also talked about groups they were interested in helping.

The Equality Project came up, and the pony club reached out as well. Employees were asked if they were interested in helping out there; so on October 19 the insurance office and credit union closed early, with four employees going to The Equality Project to shampoo the carpet in the dining-room and help clean and sort in the kitchen, while six employees went to the pony club to mend fences and help with a general clean-up after the wildfire.

“We got information about the Day of Difference from Interior Savings Credit Union,” says Shelley Magwood, executive director of The Equality Project. “We’re always looking for volunteers, so we responded.”

One of the tasks they wanted assistance with was emptying, cleaning, and organizing the kitchen cupboards. “Our cooks are busy making lunch, preparing dinners, and sorting produce, so they don’t always have time for extra cleaning.” On any given Monday and Tuesday (the days the clubhouse is open), they serve 20 to 40 lunches, and supply cooked, frozen dinners to another 10 to 20 people.

“People are thrilled about the Day of Difference,” says Kubbernus. “They fall over themselves to give us a list of things to do. These groups are always short of volunteers, and we get to come in and fill some of those gaps.

“I love the fact we work for an employer where every employee gets an opportunity to do this.”

The day also marked the re-launch of the Interior Savings $10,000 Local Give, a program that encourages others to get involved by awarding $100 cash to the first 100 people to share how they would use the money to do good.

“We were so inspired by how the people in our community embraced this opportunity last year that we brought the program back,” says Conway. “We can’t wait to see the difference individuals will make again this year.”

To participate in the Local Give, community members were invited to register online. Registration is now closed, as the full $10,000 was claimed by the end of the Day of Difference.

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