Rorab Shrine Club Raises $12,000 to Provide Patients with New Wheelchairs
Quite some time ago, the Rorab Shrine Club in North Bay, Ontario, Canada, started a program of recycling pop cans. It started out as a small effort to help the environment, to spread the word about “Shrinedom,” and to fundraise for Shriners Hospitals for Children — Canada.
Well, time flies and so did the amounts the Rorab Pop Can Gang Team raised. Since their humble beginnings of a bag or two per week, two decades later they now see over two pickup trucks full each week.
The tab project has spread all across North America, and it is just amazing what the Club has accomplished. They routinely get jars full of tabs from as far away as Florida and British Columbia. A large majority of them come from children who have championed this initiative with their local teachers and schools.
This year, the Rorab Shrine Club wanted to beat their previous total and gather over $10,000 worth of empty cans. The challenge was on. Every day Noble Randy Sheppard (who is 84 years old) and his wife, Lady Tiny, went to drop off bins around North Bay. They would also do several weekly stops at various hotels, campgrounds, condominiums and apartment buildings. They rarely missed a day, even with Noble Randy going through cancer treatments.
The word about the pop cans had also spread to neighboring communities. This year, a 12-year-old girl from South River named Felecia took it upon herself to collect beer cans from everyone she knew. All summer long, she collected cans and dropped off over 2,400 of them, which amounted to a $240 donation. Tod, a former patient from North Bay whose family runs a local campground, ensured that the Rorab Shrine Club would be the recipient of all the empty cans collected at the campground. With his efforts, they generated almost $750. He said he wanted to give back to the Shriners for all that they did for him when he was a child.
As Pop Can Gang coordinator, Noble Rob McDonald challenged everyone to drum up more to see how high the team could get their total, since they had already broken the record of $10,000 early in October.
“Two anonymous folks whispered to me that if we were close to $11,000, to let them know and they would make sure we got past that amount. Well we did. Then two gentlemen said 'let me know when you get close to $12,000 and we'll see about making that happen.' With our year end on November 30, 2022, we had one last Thursday to get to our total: that last day of beating the bushes and encouraging folks to give up their empties. When it was all said and done, we got to $11,998.20. I mentioned it to a few friends and they said 'hold the boat!' They are pretty avid fishermen, and after a successful day of fishing they'd ensure we got over $12,000.” said Rob McDonald with a smile.
The Rorab Pop Can Gang team is so grateful to all those who took the time to do good for our patients. We at the hospital are so proud to be able to offer comfortable wheelchairs to the children because of the generosity of all those working hand-in-hand with Canadian Shrine Clubs.
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