An incredibly generous community comes through once again

May 13, 2024, 10:33 am
Kevin Weedmark


Moosomin is the top fundraising community in Saskatchewan in the 2024 Tim Hortons Smile Cookie campaign. The $45,000 raised in Moosomin is also the sixth highest fundraising total across all of Canada.

As amazing as that is, it’s definitely not unexpected. In fact, this is the third year Moosomin is number one in the province in the Smile Cookie campaign, and it was also top in the province for Holiday Smile Cookie sales for the last two years.

Think about that for a minute. Moosomin is a community of just over 3,000 people, and year after year, the community is the absolute top of Smile Cookie sales, selling far more than much larger communities.

The spirit of generosity is baked into us in the Moosomin region.

Look at the level of donations in the local area recently:
• The 146 businesses included in the World-Spectator’s Support Local Business feature donated a total of $2,086,281 to local charities and organizations.

• Local businesses and individuals have donated $1,746,514 toward the Moosomin Airport Expansion project in recent weeks, as the fourth stage of fundraising has begun, to gather local donations in addition to the commitments from the provincial government, 15 local governments, and Nutrien. Included in that phenomenal fundraising total over a few weeks is a $500,000 donation from IJACK and a $100,000 donation from Darcy Rambold.

• I asked Chamber members to let me know about any donations I may not have been aware of. Some have purposely made donations low-key or want to remain entirely anonymous, but those other donations add up to $265,000.

• Alex Bruce just left a $170,000 bequest to three local facilities.

• There have been local donations totalling $106,779 to Terry Lynd Court. That funding came together in a few short months.

• As I said, the latest Smile Cookie campaign raised $45,000 in Moosomin, for Play Fair Daycare, who are working on their second building. That is the highest total in Saskatchewan and among the top 10 in Canada.

All together, that adds up to $4,419,574.

That’s absolutely amazing. Giving has become such a natural part of our identity in this area that no one bats an eye when Moosomin’s Tim Hortons again has the top Smile Cookie sales in Saskatchewan—everyone expects that it will be at or close to the top.

There are going to be some major fundraising initiatives over the next couple of years, for Moosomin’s CT Scanner and the second building for Play Fair Daycare. I have no doubt the community is going to get behind these fundraisers like it gets behind every worthy cause, and the funds will be raised more quickly than anyone expects.

Day care important to the community
The second building being planned for Play Fair Daycare is one of the most important developments in the community for a long time.

One thing that is holding back development is the lack of child care. There are people who cannot go to work or cannot move to town because of the shortage of day care spaces.

Adding 90 day care spaces in Moosomin will fill a real need. There are 37 kids who would be in daycare in Moosomin tomorrow if the spaces were available.

It was like winning the lottery when Moosomin was approved for 90 spots. We’re hoping to have Education Minister Jeremy Cockrill at the May 28 Moosomin Chamber of Commerce meeting to talk about the daycare funding and how the process works for school renovation projects like the one proposed for McNaughton High School.

And it was like winning the lottery again when the Southeast Cornerstone School Division agreed to give, for free, the land to build the daycare. Moosomin isn’t a town with a lot of vacant building sites, and the offer of about an acre of land close to the schools was just what Play Fair Daycare needed.

The provincial funding includes about $1 million for construction, so more will have to be raised.

It was great to see the outpouring of support in the Smile Cookie campaign, and it was great to see Councillor Kyla Fingas suggest at the town council meeting Wednesday that the town get behind the fundraising drive by donating proceeds of the town barbecue on July 12 to the day care.

A project like this needs the whole community behind it, and it’s great to see that is starting to happen. That’s what always happens in this community, and that keeps us moving forward.