Mason Jars campaign supports three worthy charities

 In Opinion

• Water First is a local NGO whose mission and values are to address water challenges in indigenous communities in Canada through education and meaningful collaboration.

• Ukraine: On Feb. 24, armed forces from the Russian federation began an unprovoked attack on the country of Ukraine, leading to death and destruction for the people of Ukraine, and creating a situation where we all need to step up to help in any way we can.

• Camp Simpresca: In 1949, at the end of World War II, Camp Simpresca on the shores of Georgian Bay near Midland, Ontario, was opened. For 73 years, it has been operating and providing healthy camping experiences to thousands of young people. Like all camps, Simpresca is working to build again after the ravages of COVID. It is operated by Northern Waters Presbytery in the United Church of Canada.

So… how are these three different areas of focus connected?

St. John’s United Church in Creemore and New Lowell United Church are inviting the community

to help us raise funds for these three different groups by taking part in our Mason Jar Campaigns that will run from September of 2022 through April of 2023. We welcome contributions of all sizes for our Mason Jars. Actual jars will be at the entrances of the two churches and also at the home games for the Creemore Coyotes Hockey Team.

We will be keeping everyone up to date on our progress through our CNL Pastoral Charge Facebook page, where you can also donate using the information and links there starting on Sept. 1. The webpages of the two churches will provide lots of information and updates and will also have links and contacts. Members of the Mason Jar team are Tom Macham and Deb Bronee from New Lowell and Pat Steer and Mary Boyd from Creemore.

On Sept. 11, we invite you to hear about Water First (waterfirst. ngo) from Dillon Koopmans, the Education Programs Manager, as we open our campaign. We couldn’t be more local in our choice of this NGO started up by John Millar and encourage you to take a wander through their impressive website and the amazing results that their collaboration in these communities has managed to date.

Many of you would remember that Water First started out as Tin Roof Global and worked in Uganda in rural schools to educate, empower, and put in place a system for safe water from the ground up. The move back to Canada to provide safe, clean water in the north for our indigenous communities and to listen to, involve, educate and train the people of those communities to carry on and improve the systems, makes so much sense.

Our doors will be open by 10 a.m. and we will begin our service at 11 a.m., with time afterward to have a snack and a drink and fellowship with Dillon and the other people who come to find out about Water First. We would also be happy to hear from you with ideas to fundraise for this group.

We will introduce our second focus, Humanitarian Aid to Ukraine, on Sunday, Oct. 23 at the New Lowell church with the same time frame; we have a tentative speaker that we will announce in September, and we invite you to continue the journey with us at our second special Sunday. You are of course, welcome every Sunday.

On Nov. 13, we will have our Camp Simpresca (simpresca.camp) Sunday back at the St. John’s church, again with the same times. We welcome all campers in their camp gear for a fun-filled get together! And through it all, we will work to fundraise for these three good causes, hopefully with your help and encouragement!

We are also planning to have some mason jar events where people can get together and create food, do some mason jar crafts, etc., so watch for that on our Facebook Page and our two websites.

Please join the Creemore Coyotes on Oct. 22 for their home opener which will be “Ukrainian War Effort” night. Contact Jim Slattery at 416- 605-8787 for more information or check the Creemore Coyotes website, at creemorecoyotes.com.

We hope that you will come along with us on this journey!

– Submitted by Mason Jar team members at United Churches in Creemore and New Lowell.

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