I have had the privilege of being raised by two wonderful, kind and hard working parents. My mom coming from strong Irish roots and my dad, proud Slovak roots. One thing they always instilled in me was that “the world is how you want to see it”. When the chips are down, and things aren’t going your way- how do you deal? Do you throw the towel in and give up or do you make some lemonade out of lemons? Lemonade was always the only option in the Pastor household!
2020 and a global pandemic threw some wrenches into my fundraising plans and certainly changed some of the typical title holding experiences for us delegates, however I am grateful for all of the opportunities that still managed to present themselves. To provide a little more context: I had grand plans of hosting a fun filled fundraiser at a local Toronto Irish pub in benefit of Make a Wish Foundation… back in APRIL. My community, family, friends and even friends of friends had all planned on attending. There was going to be raffle baskets, a live band, a DJ and even some Irish Dancing performances! Unfortunately, this night was rightfully cancelled in order to keep all my family and friends safe and healthy, in light of rising numbers of COVID-19 cases.
So, that was the (very) sour lemon.. a fundraiser in benefit of an incredibly worthy cause, cancelled. Now, this was when some lemonade was made. Although it took some time, thought and patience, last weekend I was fortunately able to host a walk and online raffle for Make A Wish Foundation.. and a very successful one at that! My family and friends gathered, face masks and all, at 10:30am on Sunday morning. We put out snacks and coffee at the start location and made up some thank you goodie bags for all those that kindly participated. The walk took place in the neighbourhood I grew up in, Markland Woods, and was roughly 4km in length. Although the weather was nowhere near beach worthy, every single person that showed up had a smile on their face, an umbrella in their hand (or a hood on their head) ready to walk and raise money.
Along with the walk, I organized an online raffle (with the kind help of my cousin). Using an online raffle site was certainly a new learning experience! I put together an Irish themed goodie basket including Irish treats, liquor, handmade towels and waterford crystal, all right from the Irish store. Raffle tickets were purchased online and the winner of the raffle was virtually drawn after the walk on Sunday. Every single penny raised from both the walk and the raffle will be donated in benefit of Make A Wish Foundation.
I woke up Monday morning, SO happy. I am both amazed and grateful to be surrounded by such a loving and supportive community of family and friends. They took the time out of their Sunday morning, in the rain, to come and support an extremely notable cause. The world truly is how YOU want to see it. Find and look for the good in all situations and people, and it will be there! Thank you again to everyone who participated- I had so much fun!!