Big Brother Big Sisters see best year yet


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December 11, 2014 9:06 AM

Brenda Robinson, executive director of Big Brother/Big Sisters, announced at the organization's AGM that 2014 was their best year.

It’s been a busy and rewarding year for Lloydminster Big Brothers Big sisters. Awards, successful fundraisers and all around growth made 2014 one of the best in the agency’s history.

“Progress was made, not a doubt,” said Brenda Robinson, Big Brothers Big Sisters executive director. “It sets the challenge for the year ahead.”
Due to hard work with grant applications and fundraising, she said year over year, 2014 was financially better than years in the past.

“Quite simply, if we didn’t fundraise we wouldn’t exist,” said Robinson. “That’s pretty much the bottom line and we’re pretty consistent with that because over the last four years we’ve raised half of our budget. So it is daily fundraising in our organization.”

They also won the Agency Growth Award for the fifth year in a row. The award is something handed down from the Big Brothers Big Sisters national leg for local agencies that can meet the figures they set for their forecasted growth each year. Lloydminster not only met that figure but excelled beyond it with an increase of 3.5% children served.

Their annual Bowl for Kids fundraiser also far outpaced that of 2013 where they raised $38,249 for the organization. Robinson feels that the decision to move it from Saturday to Friday contributed to this year’s exceptional turnout. This time around they raised $50,037 at the event.

“2014 is the first year we’ve done it on a Friday night and there was a huge difference for people being able to attend,” she said.
“Our upcoming one will be in April and the theme for 2015 is the ugly sweater party.”

Another big fundraiser this year was the Harley Owner’s Group (HOG) Toy Run, which donated almost double the amount of last year’s run with $23,305. The group also donated toys for the kids at the agency, making the whole event a huge boost for Big Brothers/ Big Sisters.

“Every donation to this agency has a value that you can’t put a financial price tag on,” Robinson said. “Every donation received in some way makes a difference in the life of a child.”

When it comes to a prosperous year like 2014, Robinson feels the thanks should really go to the community.

“We have a great community. They volunteer time, resources, money, you know? They’re our bigs, our board members. It takes a community not only to raise a child but to keep an organization going.”

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