Island Savings

#SimpleGenerosity

Celebrating community leadership


Simple Generosity began in recognition of Canada 150 – Island Savings celebrated community leadership across BC by recognizing local volunteers, non-profit organizations and charities that are making meaningful contributions in our communities.

We were so inspired by the amazing stories that we want to continue spreading Simple Generosity in our communities in 2018 and celebrate the outstanding contributions from dedicated volunteers!

 

Volunteer Awards

We’re selecting 52 volunteers and empowering them to make a $1,000 donation, courtesy of First West Credit Union, to the non-profit of their choice.

Do you know someone who's making a difference? Is it you?

Community Legacy Grants

We gifted a $50,000 grant to an organization focused on enhancing our communities for children and families.

The stories behind #SimpleGenerosity

Behind every dollar awarded there is a story of inspiration and generosity. We’re proud to share these stories – stories of your community – with you.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Pender Island resident, Anne Orlaw is donating her $1,500 award to Pender Island Community Services Society. Anne has volunteered for over 11 years in various capacities at the Nu to Yu Thrift Store on Pender Island and is now the store manager. Her organization skills and knowledge of what the community needs on Pender has aided the society to grow and provided financial support back to the community. Anne is always willing to jump in and help members of the community, whether it be through outreach and victim services or helping maintain dignity. Anne is an admired lady in the community and always goes the extra mile.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Victoria resident, Bethany Wilson is donating her $1,500 award to Kaleidoscope Theatre for Young People. Bethany is President of the Board, Chair of the Fundraising Committee, mentor to staff and hands-on volunteer at events for Kaleidoscope – the only professional theatre company on the Island that provides a full theatrical experience to children and their families. Bethany helps make it possible for the organization to keep ticket prices low, and performances accessible to families from diverse backgrounds. What makes Bethany so remarkable is that she does all of this while accomplishing other amazing things in the community. She is a key organizer of Jingle Mingle, an active volunteer at her son's school, and does all this while running her own marketing firm.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Nanaimo resident, Karen Streeter is donating her $1,500 award to Vancouver Island Exhibition Association. Karen is currently the President of VIEX and has been involved in every aspect of the fair through volunteering for 21 years. She has advocated for new buildings, upgrades and developed other events to create support for the fair. She has organized budgets, advertising, sponsorships and special events. She supervises volunteers, paid staff and volunteers daily by making phone calls, reaching out to the community, attending meetings and helping with anything that needs to be done. Karen has personally documented the fair’s history by going through files from the 100+ years of the fair, setting up displays to celebrate and spending hours putting together scrapbooks and photo albums so that future boards, directors and generations can appreciate all of the people who have been part of the VIEX and agricultural history in Nanaimo.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Cowichan Valley resident, Eric Marshall is donating his $1,500 award to Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre. For the past twenty years, Eric has volunteered with the Cowichan Land Trust and Cowichan Valley Naturalists’ Society. Eric, a retired marine biologist and avid birder, was an integral part of the committee that lead the development of the Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre in 2011. Since opening, Eric has been instrumental in the success of the centre, contributing over 1,500 volunteer hours.

Eric is one of the Centre’s most enthusiastic and reliable volunteers. From aquarium maintenance to exhibit development, Eric has been involved in every aspect of the Centre. The support Eric provides is critical to helping the Centre reach over 6,000 visitors and nearly 2,000 school children each year – providing each person the opportunity to learn about the estuary, its critical fish and bird habitat, and the importance of these vital natural spaces.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Victoria resident, Joyce Anderson is donating her $1,500 award to Soroptimist International Greater Victoria - a service club dedicated to improving the lives of women and girls locally and globally. Joyce has been volunteering with the club for over 30 years and from selling tickets and fundraising to serving dinner at the transition house, she is always ready to do whatever she can to help. She is not only involved in every event the Soroptimist club hosts, but she also takes charge of the orientation and training for new members and education of the club. Joyce loves to see young people succeed and enjoys being able to help support their dreams through awards and bursaries the club distributes. She is a fearless leader and her dedication and care towards helping her community is admirable.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Victoria resident, Jessica Snider is donating her $1,500 award to Ecoforestry Institute Society – supporting a future where the principles of sustainable forestry are the foundation for all forestry activities. Through the Ecoforestry Institute, Jessica has been instrumental in the protection of Wildwood Forest, located between Ladysmith and Nanaimo. The 77-acre forest is unique in that it showcases sustainable logging practises. Jessica has worked to obtain grassroots public support and raise funds to keep Wildwood as a demonstration forest to serve as a model for sustainable forestry. As a biologist, her dedication to the project and passion for nature has engaged the community so they can appreciate all that nature has to offer. Thanks to Jessica, Wildwood Ecoforest is a community asset that serves all forms of recreational, wildlife, spiritual and economic uses.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Victoria resident, Sy Silverberg is donating $1,500 to the Society for Kids at Tennis. Sy is the founder of the organization and their mission is to improve the physical, emotional and social well-being of children whose families’ financial circumstances limit their access to healthy sport. KATS works in partnership with over 40 community organizations and low-income neighbourhood schools and provide free tennis equipment and instruction to youth who would otherwise not have the means to learn and play. They have assembled a team of 17 tennis professionals and have trained 54 volunteers to assist the certified instructors. Children are taught using equipment appropriate for their size and nets set lower than that of an adult. Their ability to keep the ball in play, almost immediately helps to build their self-confidence, particularly for the many children who are not “natural athletes”. It is believed this growing confidence will extend to other areas of their lives as well. Since their inception just four year ago KATS has seen rapid growth and has been able to reach more than 6,000 children in the Victoria region from Sidney to Sooke.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Victoria resident, Robert McKie is donating his $1,500 award to Victoria Scottish Community Centre Society. Robert has been volunteering with the Esquimalt Lions Club, Victoria Highland Games and Esquimalt Curling Club for a combined total of 70 years! He has been involved on the board of each organization for many years, allowing him to be instrumental in projects that he is truly passionate about in the community. Robert is eager to help out wherever possible and has a tough time saying no to these groups that are having such an amazing impact. He loves being involved and injecting his high energy to help make the projects and community thrive.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Cobble Hill resident, George Baird is donating his $1,500 award to Shawnigan Cobble Hill Farmers Institute & Agricultural Society. George has been volunteering with 4-H and the Farmers Institute since 1959. He was President of the organization and is now a director on the Farmers Institute Board and he is the longstanding Chair of the Cobble Hill Fair. The Fair raises money for the Institute so they can sponsor 4-H, the South Cowichan Seniors luncheons, the spring and Christmas Concerts with funds going to the Food Bank and a wide variety of other activities in the community. As a youngster, George became involved in the 4-H movement – teaching him the value of community and commitment to goals. George's willingness to participate and to enable others is inspiring. His steadfast commitment to community and to young people enriches the lives of those living in South Cowichan. George's decades of involvement provides an historical prospective, practical advice and very willing hands.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Island resident, Jane Wolverton is donating her $1,500 award to The Galiano Club. For the past 14 years, Jane has been volunteering with the Galiano Club and playing a key role in many events for the community organization. She helped create a food program to improve food security on the island - breaking down isolation and barriers and passing on skills. The program took off and now touches almost everyone on the island - community pot lucks to school food programs, soup luncheons to meals for those in need, and growing, gleaning and seed saving. Jane truly enjoys building teams and believes in people's capacity to change and grow.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Victoria resident, Gil Tourigny is donating his $1,500 award to ParkinGo Wellness Society. Gil has been instrumental in the development of ParkinGo, a centre to provide exercise classes for people with Parkinson’s disease. Gil has taken on the role of director for the organization, mentors other directors and has met with the head of neuroscience at UVic and head of clinical services at Island Health Authority to learn more about the disease and how the wellness centre can help. He has secured a $500,000 grant to build a permanent home for the centre on the corner of Blanshard and Hillside in Victoria and it is set to open this fall. Without Gil’s hard work and determination, ParkinGo wouldn’t be able to obtain their goal of being a Parkinson’s wellness centre serving the Greater Victoria communities.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Congratulations to Saanich Neighbourhood Place - winner of our $50,000 #SimpleGenerosity community grant! Saanich Neighbourhood Place provides important support services to Island families. They will be transforming the underutilized woodsy space behind G.R. Pearkes Recreation Centre into a natural wonderland called “The Little Woods” for very young children to enjoy. As part of the makeover they’ll be removing invasive plant species, adding forts, platforms and other fun play structures, and building perimeter fencing to provide a secure outdoor play area for Victoria families. We can’t wait to see the final result!

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Salt Spring Island resident, Cherie Gouvreau is donating her $1,500 award to Salt Spring Island Women Opposed to Violence Association. When Cherie first moved to Salt Spring Island, she was involved with SWOVA and it was a life changing experience for her. Now, for the last 15 years, Cherie has been helping establish the Copper Kettle Community Partnership - focused on finding solutions to end homelessness on Salt Spring Island. Her modest and caring nature makes her an exceptional volunteer. Cherie cares so passionately for helping people in her community and truly wears her heart on her sleeve.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Melissa Morris, a resident of Vancouver Island is donating her $1,500 award to Our Place Society. Melissa began volunteering with Our Place Society six years ago, when she convinced her employer at the time to sponsor and serve a holiday meal. Today, Melissa visits this important community hub once a week to serve breakfast and share in conversation, taking the time to get to know the stories of each and every member. But her contributions don’t stop there! Melissa recently completed a comprehensive mental health & addictions program to better understand how to help neighbours-in-need in meaningful ways.

 

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Vancouver Island resident Monty Bryant is donating his $1,500 award to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Victoria and Area. A dedicated volunteer for the past 25 years, Monty has generously contributed his time on the Board of Directors and various committees. As a former educator and Associate School Superintendent, Monty was instrumental in implementing the In-School Mentoring program in partnership with local elementary schools. Through his efforts, Big Brothers Big Sisters is able to connect children with other caring volunteers who change lives, one relationship at a time. It’s clear Monty cares for his community and the children supported by Big Brothers Big Sisters.

 

#SimpleGenerosity

Vancouver Islander Kristy Martin Hale is donating her $1,500 award to Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Cowichan Valley. It’s been 11 years since Kristy first became a big sister, and to this day these two regularly spend time hiking the Island’s great outdoors, swimming, skating, doing crafts and just hanging out. With remarkable compassion, Kristy is always a source of encouragement for her little sister—a shoulder to lean on during difficult times, and a cheerleader there to celebrate every success. It’s no surprise that these two will be lifelong friends! Also a positive advocate for the Big Brothers Big Sisters program, Kristy leads by example—her story illustrates the benefits of mentorship, and encourages others to participate in the program.

 

 

Thank you for inspiring us!

 

Thank you to our partner in #SimpleGenerosity.