The Weyburn Wor-Kin Shop Corp.'s 'One Night, Half-a-million dollars' event is aimed at raising the rest of its goal in one night. Although the land for the new Day Program building has been acquired, the project is at a standstill without their contribution of half-a-million dollars.
So far, the Wor-Kin Shop has just a little more than $200,000 towards its goal of the $500,000 required of the organization for its share of the building fund. Once the half million dollar goal is reached, the Ministry of Social Services will provide the remainder of their $1 million commitment and construction of the new Day Program Building will commence.
The upscale event will be held on March 18 in the Cafetorium at the Weyburn Comprehensive School. 'Mocktails' and hors d'oeuvres will be served at 6:30 and the presentation and concert will begin at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are being sold only in advance for $50 and tax receipts will be issued for $25 on each ticket.
The evening's entertainment will include members of the Regina Symphony Orchestra, 'Ambiance Combo', performing selections of jazz, classical, gypsy, pop and fiddle music.
"It is our hope that we can raise it all in one night and be done," said Andria Brady, Executive Director of the Weyburn Wor-Kin Shop Corp.
Brady noted that the organization has been fundraising for two years already, but now that the bureaucratic process is near completion, the only thing preventing them from starting construction is the remaining $300,000.
"$300,000 is a lot, but when we look at the fundraising that has happened in the community in the last few years, it's just a small drop in the bucket," she said. "We are really hoping that the community steps forth and we are able to announce some big donations that night."
The Weyburn Wor-Kin Shop does not usually have to raise funds for regular operations.
"Historically," explained Brady, "we have been around since 1971 and we haven't gone to the community ever before and it won't be something that we're fundraising for on an ongoing basis - because this is construction only. The Ministry will fund the operation of the building."
Brady said that there may be specialized equipment that they could need funding for in the future and that they would look to local businesses or organizations to sponsor the purchase of such items.
The project was the first in Saskatchewan to be approved for brand new construction of an up-to-date program facility for adults with intellectual disabilities. The new building will enable the Wor-Kin Shop to accommodate twice as many individuals, many of whom are unable to be served at the current vocational, industrial facility, which also desperately requires more operational space.
Persons with certain high needs, such as for quiet and calm, will not be able to take advantage of the life-skills building, therapeutic and social aspects provided by the Wor-Kin Shop's Day Program until the new building is complete.
The necessity of the building is indeed one excellent reason to support the fundraiser, but the event itself could be a justifiable expense, since it should provide an excellent 'date night' venue.
"We are looking at this to be a nice evening, for somebody who wants a little culture in their life," said Brady. She noted that they have been in the process of contacting businesses about reserving tables.
Thirty donations of $10,000 a piece would get the Wor-Kin Shop to their goal in just one evening. Brady noted that this is an opportunity for individuals and businesses to be part of something bigger.
"It's so little, yet it's so much," said Brady.
"When we say half a million," she clarified, "some of that can be over more than one year, if that works for a business. As long as we have that commitment and it's in writing and we can show the Ministry that it has been committed."
There are different sponsorship levels available to donors, who will each receive permanent recognition on the Wor-Kin Shop's donor wall in the new building. For 'platinum' donations of more than $25,000, naming rights are an added perk.
"The Young fellows and the Credit Union have already purchased their naming rights," she noted. "They get choice of what they would like to name."
Naming rights are given on a first-come, first-served basis. Platinum sponsors will also receive tickets to the benefit concert, as will 'gold' sponsors who donate between $10,001 and $24,999. Any who give between $500 and $10,000 will receive certificates of support and public recognition at the benefit concert, which are, of course, also given to gold and platinum sponsors.
Brady noted that even if a business can't write out a $10,000 cheque that evening, they might want to send some employees or customers and be privy to reserved seating.
Donations of construction materials will also be accepted in lieu of a cash donation.
Brady suggested that businesses who wish to be part of the presentation that evening should contact her in advance to commit their donations.
The Weyburn Wor-Kin Shop Corp. is a registered charity and therefore tax receipts are provided for all donations.