On February 26, 2022, an intrepid group of CFUW Orillia trekkers braved the chilly winter temperatures to walk 5 km for the Coldest Night of the Year (CNOY) challenge. This fundraiser, a yearly event and a family friendly walk to help alleviate homelessness, hurt, and hunger, supports The Lighthouse in Orillia.
The CFUW Orillia team raised $26,674 for the cause, the 7th highest amount raised in Canada and 1st among CFUW teams across the country. The 13 CFUW clubs from across Canada raised a grand total of $69,500. This year, keeping COVID protocols in place, the CFUW Orillia team walked separately instead of their usual practice of walking as a group.
Our Team Captain, praised her team by stating, “Thank you to our thoughtful, caring, and motivated team members and to the many people who have donated to our team and contributed to this wonderful success.” She also emphasized that because her team has been participating for several years, they have been able to increase their total, but all contributions, large or small, ensure the success of the event.
The CFUW Orillia walkers gave many reasons for their involvement. Most cited the desire to help those in need in the community while others indicated various motivations such as being part of a team, helping the Lighthouse with their great work, feeling the sense of community, and generally a desire to improve the lives of others.
In a note sent by Lynn Thomas, Development and Communications Manager for the Lighthouse, she stated, "Our Coldest Night of the Year planning team were so inspired watching the fundraising campaign of the CFUW Orillia Walkers as it continued to snowball to a total of $26,674! What a tremendous group effort not only to raise funds for The Lighthouse, but also to advocate and raise awareness for the people we serve every day of the year. Thanks for being such wonderful Lighthouse Keepers and inspiring all of our teams to reach for their best results!"