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Huge turnout for inclusion funder

By May 11, 2022No Comments
Jen Alexus, left, Bevin Hamilton, Nadia Lehman and Jacob Gordon shared their experiences to help raise $112,230 for persons with developmental disabilities at the 11th annual fundraising breakfast for Inclusion Lloydminster and Inclusion Alberta  at the Stockade Convention Centre on May 5. Geoff Lee Meridian Source


Hope needs action. 

That was the prevailing pitch at this year’s 11th annual fundraising breakfast for Inclusion Lloydminster and Inclusion Alberta at the Stockade Convention Centre.

“Join us today by taking action to sustain hope,” said Inclusion Alberta CEO, Trish Bowman, in her opening remarks.

Bowman spoke virtually to an audience of more than 300 people last Thursday, asking them to continue to support Inclusion Lloydminster and Alberta programs through donations and pledges.

As an example, she noted the Rotary Employment Partnership has created more than 680 jobs to date for persons with developmental disabilities in Alberta.

“All of what we do is dedicated to sustaining hope while realizing lives have meaning and belonging,” she said.

Bowman says none of this would be possible without the core support of generous donors called dream makers who commit to contribute a minimum of $1,000 a year for five years to the cause.

Inclusion Lloydminster president, Tami Smith, was excited to see so many people come out and learn how to make a difference locally.

“I think Lloydminster is an amazing community. People come together whenever they see things that need to happen,” she said.

“Whatever we make would be amazing, but we are hoping to make $100,000 today.”

The event raised $112,120 to add to the $689,950 raised locally over the years.

Cathy Laycock, a community development coordinator, explained Inclusion Lloydminster and Alberta advocate on behalf of children and adults with developmental disabilities and their families.

“One example we are so proud of this past year is we were able to create more possibilities for youth and adults with the expansion of the Rotary Employment Partnership in Vermilion and inclusive post secondary at Lakeland College,” said Laycock.

She noted the program will expand its inclusive education program from three to seven students, including the trades and the faculty of agriculture for the first time.

“Opportunities like this make a huge impact on the lives of people with developmental disabilities,” said Laycock.

She also congratulated the Lloydminster U13 Female Blazers on hand for donating $100,000 to Inclusion Lloydminster to make the new Lloydminster Place event centre accessible and inclusive for everyone.

Laycock is the mother of a son with developmental disabilities who shared her personal story along with speakers Jen Alexus, Bevin Hamilton and Nadia Lehman and her son, Jacob Gordon.

“Those stories are really impactful,” said Smith.

“It shows there are so many families that don’t know about our organizations and that’s why we get those stories because their family members are not included.”

Smith says they have some terrible experiences and when they do come and find out about Inclusion Lloydminster and Inclusion Alberta, hope is given back to them.

Lloydminster resident, Robin Acton, president of Inclusion Canada, called the fundraiser and the turnout fantastic.

“Because I get a national view of things, when I come home to my home community, I am so proud of us,” said Acton, the past president of Inclusion Alberta.

“People here are committed to community and building a community where everybody belongs.”

The event was MC’d by Heather Klages from Stingray Group and councillor Jason Whiting.