Dear Trekkers, Thank you all so much for your passion, enthusiasm and leadership! What an amazing day… again! We all know that raising money is important to any not-for-profit or charity. It is what allows them to do what they need to do for their key stakeholders. That is the reality we all face as NFP board members, chapter/resource unit leadership, members and volunteers. That is why we started the Trek and that remains a strategic priority. But every year, I am reminded that our little spring right of passage has become so much more. And it is not the amount raised that I remember afterwards… it is all the little things that happen from the start of the Trek to the end. Six weeks of small memories, emails, interactions, challenges and events that shape what the Trek for Tourette has become: an emotional glue that brings us all together as a proud community once a year. Here are just a few of those moments… my moments:
- A young boy and his mom (GTA Chapter) at their 1st Trek who introduced themselves to me and stated the young man had “never” met anyone else with Tourette. He was introduced to another 8 year old boy with TS… and suddenly had a brand new friend. We need to start keeping track of new relationships the Trek enables!
- My family’s amazement at the powerhouse that is Stettler, Alberta! Holy crap Batman… what an amazing accomplishment and the unofficial winner of the most money raised per capita! And what about Winnipeg with over 250 people out for the Running Room run and the Trek! This has to be a new attendance record! We have so much respect for this amazing work.
- The emails I know I will get every year from Ray Robertson (London) and Jay Thomblison (Hamilton Halton Niagara) when they get ahead of my fundraising. We just love giving each other the gears!
- The phone call from Elaine Sadori and her daughter Anita (Montreal) congratulating me on a successful trek and throwing down the challenge for 2014. I am so proud of what Elaine is doing in Montreal to rebuild a once proud TS community, one Trekker at a time.
- Virginia Middleton’s (St. John’s) blog about why she Treks. So powerful… knowing my kids may have to make that choice one day.
- The quick emails from Jude Moxam (London) in the middle of the day telling me I can be an honorary member of Team Tic That for motivating her team to new fundraising success! Honored!
- The pride in watching Dayna Caruso and her family (Spruce Grove) or Julie DeGroot and Keaton (Winnipeg) or Jude and Owen Moxam (London) on TV representing the TSFC in such fine fashion!
- Knowing the Winnipeg Blue Bombers were TREKKING! So awesome (too bad they can’t beat the Argo’s)!
- Looking at the Trek photos of Halifax and seeing my dear old 72-year-old Mom and Dad trekking for their two grandsons in Mississauga. This was the first year he couldn’t manage the registration process by himself but he was determined to Trek and he raised $410! So proud of Harvey and Gerri!
If I can be so bold… please take a moment and blog about what your memories and motivational moments are. And if I had one more ask of all of you… it would be this… care deeply about the TSFC as a national organization. Let’s continue to build this Trek, one memory at a time. And finally… know that each of you made a big difference in the lives of someone else… well done! Douglas Coll TSFC GTA Chapter President TSFC National Director PHOTO: Doug with his family at the 2013 Toronto Trek