November President’s Report
Before I begin with the accolades and thank you’s, I would like to share some other issues that are more serious for our Branch.
- Robertson Memorial Br #17 will be closed until January 1st due to the Pandemic. Schooner’s Pub will have reduced hours: Monday-Saturday 11-8 and Sunday 12-4. Meat Raffles and Chase the President have also been cancelled. The Office will remain open but at reduced hours.
- I have applied for another grant to furnish the new meeting room in the basement. It will also be used for presentations such as Elder Abuse, Fraud, Keeping Positive and Healthy as we age, Healthy Eating, and many other relevant topics for seniors or Legion members. If you are able share your experiences and knowledge with a group or if you have an idea for a topic for presentation, please let us know. We are hoping to start this after the New Year and hopefully COVID-19 will be in the rear-view mirror.
- If you would like to serve on the next Executive we are going to offer informational sessions re the Legion, as well as what your responsibilities would entail as an executive member and all about the Legion, the protocols and procedures. You would become familiar with the Manual of Information. These informational sessions will start in January.
- In order to keep the Legion and Pub viable, we have had to apply for two $40,000. Government loans, CEBA. This means the Legion and the Pub will each owe $30,000 in December 2021, to the Federal Government.
- We have applied for a grant from Dominion Command that will really assist us financially and allow us to keep paying the bills. Remember we CANNOT use the Poppy money unless it is used to assist Veterans and their families in need. It cannot be used to pay Legion bills.
- We have also applied for and received Wage Subsidies from the Federal Government for the Legion. We will be applying for more this coming week.
Now for the positive stuff. The Highlight for our Legion for November was the Poppy Campaign and of course our Remembrance Day Service at the Cenotaph. There were so many who stepped up and helped in so many ways. First I need to thank Cook Southland Funeral Home and Crematorium, Al’s Audio and RF Productions for live streaming our Ceremony. David Gee and Shaw Cable produced a fabulous inclusive Video to honour Remembrance Day. Both productions were extremely well received by the public throughout Medicine Hat and beyond. Thank you to both Patricia and Mark Ward for their performances on piano and bugle and to Eric Keane for playing the Bagpipes for the video and during the ceremony at the Cenotaph.
A special thank you is extended to the students at River Heights School for painting over 250 rocks to honour our Veterans. Those that were not claimed at the Cenotaph are now decorating our Legion waiting to be taken home by a veteran.
Other groups assisted to make this Ceremony, though reduced to 100, as meaningful as possible. The SALH supplied the chairs and Tom Smithson and his CAVS took them to the Cenotaph and brought them back. Tom and the CAVS picked up the wreaths at the Legion and pre-positioned them around the Cenotaph and brought some of them back the next day. Thank you to all who helped in any way to ensure that we had a safe but meaningful Ceremony to honour our Veterans, past and present.
The Poppy Campaign was a success thanks to the efforts of so many awesome volunteers. A special shout out to all those who took responsibility for one of the business routes. This is a big job and once again it was done impeccably by these volunteers. Even though we did not have the Cadets helping us this year, we had no problem filling the spots at the tables at Canadian Tire, Walmart and just outside the Bay. Thank you to all who volunteered. A great big thank you as well to Mike Davis who for many years has accepted the responsibility of ensuring each table is manned, has the poppies and materials needed and picks up the money at the end of each day and brings it down to the Legion for counting.
Once he brought the money to the Legion, he was met by the counters Janice Allen, Les Shepherd and Jack Bennett. They proceeded to roll the coin in our handy, dandy automatic coin roller and to count the money for deposit. Then they deposited the money in the Bank. This was a big job that requires a big thank you from all the members. The approximate amount raised during the Poppy Campaign this year was $70,000. Well done Legion #17 volunteers.
Please remember to follow the rules to keep us all safe:
- Wear a mask
- Social Distance
- Wash your hands.
- Stay home if you are sick.
- Follow the Alberta Health Guidelines
Keep safe and have a wonderful Christmas!