Community members took on bowling last Friday to help raise money for Ponoka’s Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS).
Held March 10 at Leisure Lanes in Ponoka the bowling alley was packed with folks in their best costumes hoping to see BBBS’ programs continue. Total dollars raised was $18,300, just shy of the $20,000 goal, but support was still strong.
Program director Morgen Chernick said this is the biggest fundraiser of the year for the group, which helps with the many mentor programs offered in Ponoka. Without the bowl-a-thon these programs would not be possible and while it is difficult to remember the first time the fundraiser was held, it’s clear the benefits go to help Ponoka’s kids and participants see its value.
“The people who are participating in the Bowl for Kids’ Sake, some of them are mentors, some of them have been part of the Bowl for Kids’ Sake as long as I can remember,” said Chernick.
What she enjoys about the fundraiser is seeing the support and the families, businesses and community groups who help out.
“What’s stood out is seeing the longevity of the matches,” said Chernick of the programs adding that kids who were little brothers or sisters are now mentors.
“We’re now seeing it’s full circle.”
She added that one little brother has been matched with his mentor since he was in Grade 1. He is now in Grade 10 with the same mentor.
The longevity of the matches is an important part of what makes BBBS such a vibrant program in Ponoka.
Prizes from the evening
Team Pledge Collection 1st Place: County of Ponoka (raised $1,825)
Team Pledge Collection 2nd Place: Princess Leah’s Team
Team Pledge Collection 3rd Place: Catholic Social Services
Online Pledge Collection: Ponoka Victim Services/RCMP
Individual Pledge Collection 1st Place: Chad McIsaac (raised $510)
Individual Pledge Collection 2nd Place: Todd Lewis
Team Costume 1st Place : Ponoka Elementary School
Team Costume 2nd Place: Ponoka Secondary Campus
Individual Costume Winner: Janel Hodnefield