One Droplet of Water Helps Fill an Ocean

When the Contact Centre team at Manitoba Public Insurance (MPI) gets together for a fundraiser, they are a force to be reckoned with. From dress-down events, to bake sales and potlucks, it’s a group effort to pitch in and help those in need. As MPI employee Ilona McEachern says, it’s also a way to show that their department is “a closely knit family who genuinely cares for and supports one another.”

Throughout the year, several charities and groups are supported through the centre’s fundraising efforts, including the Canadian brain tumour community – sadly, a cause close to the team’s hearts.

Harry Stekler was an integral part of MPI and passed away in 2007 after a battle with a brain tumour. Not quite 50 at the time of his passing, Ilona remembers Harry as a kind-hearted person who always made time for his fellow staff mates. “He appreciated the little things in life, like talking about sports and bragging about his wife’s cooking. Harry was a wealth of knowledge, respected for his work ethics, and well-known for his jokes and camaraderie.”

Harry’s death hit the team hard. To pay tribute to the man with the “larger than life” personality, the Contact Centre has tirelessly fundraised in his honour over the past five years. “It’s our way of keeping Harry’s memory alive,” explains Ilona.

Setting up departmental Denim Days, the centre’s nearly 200-person staff has raised almost $1,500 for Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada. Ilona says the next step is to try and secure a company-wide Denim Day in the future.

Fundraising isn’t an easy feat and the Contact Centre staff makes it a priority to host charitable activities that are inclusive of everyone and cover a range of causes. Ilona even emphasizes the importance of individuals going beyond donations to volunteer, educate or participate in events – giving what they can, when they can. “You can give back to a charity and to your community not only monetarily. Be that one droplet of water that eventually fills an ocean!”

Story posted: January 2013


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