DDSB Staff Association donates funds to local organizations through weekly draws
Since the Durham District School Board (DDSB) Education Centre first opened in 1996, the DDSB Staff Association has been running a weekly 50/50 draw to support the Durham Region community.
Tickets are one for two dollars or three for five dollars. Half of the funds go to a lucky staff member, and the other half goes to the chosen charity or organization for that week.
"It's important to us as a community to support the greater Durham Region community that we live in," says Beverley Gordon, Staff Association Representative and Lead of the 50/50 draw at the DDSB.
Gordon says the Staff Association usually sends out an 'ask' for charity recommendations from Education Centre staff twice a year, "we look for local chapters, or small local charities that might not have the funds to run a whole campaign."
Last year (2018/2019) the 50/50 draw raised a total of $6,469 for charity. So far this year, the draw has already raised $3,362. Approximately $1,000 of the total raised each year goes to the Adopt-A-Family program.
Adopt-A-Family collects donations to purchase food vouchers, gift cards, clothing, household items, and more for families and teens in-need during the holiday season. The program also aims to provide families in-need with gifts during Easter, and with back to school supplies in August. This year, the DDSB helped six teens and six families.
"The families are suggested through our in-house Social Workers. These are kids in our schools, and their families," says Gordon.
Gordon says they try to coordinate the chosen charity of the week on days, weeks, or months of significance, and that they lean mostly toward child-related organizations, "for example, May is Speech Language and Hearing Month, so the chosen organization would be Grandview Children's Hospital."
Some of the other incredible organizations and charities that the 50/50 draw regularly supports are: Hearth Place, Central Lake Ontario Conservation Authority (CLOCA), Grandview Children's Hospital, Eastview Boys and Girls Club, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), and Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Easter Basket Raffle
"Another big 50/50-related event we do lands on the Thursday before Easter weekend," explains Gordon. "A message goes out to all Education Centre departments and in groups, people decide on a basket theme, and then fill the basket with goodies based on the theme. There are usually eight to 12 baskets, which are then raffled off amongst Education Centre staff." She adds that all funds raised from the raffle go towards the chosen organization. This year the funds will go toward supporting the ALS Society of Canada.
L-R: Jennifer Milne, Melissa Durwad, Christian Hajok, Kristy Hottot, Carole MacLennan, Wendy MacPherson, Gina Waduck, Theresa Luey, Rosalind Anthony, Kelly Jennings, Beverley Gordon, and Nancy Mullin make up the DDSB Staff Association Team that coordinates the weekly 50/50 draws supporting local charities and organizations in the Durham Region.