‘I think we got a lot of traction this year and we’ve created a good brand’
VALLEY – A newly established program offering additional support for single mothers during the holidays was an overwhelming success.
Andrew Dunlap, second from left, is presented with a $1,000 gift certificate by Paul Clark, left, of Inglis Jewellers, Peter Fahey, co-founder of PFI Christmas Bonus Program, and Greg Johnston, also of Inglis Jewellers. Dunlap purchased the lucky raffle ticket in support of the PFI Christmas Bonus Program for Single Mothers. SUBMITTED PHOTO
Peter Fahey, along with his wife Ronda, founded the non-profit PFI Christmas Bonus Program for Single Mothers Association in late November, committed to assisting single mothers in Colchester County who are underfunded and underprivileged.
This holiday season, 47 single mothers benefited from the association’s inaugural fundraising campaign.
“We were able to raise $26,500, which beat our expectations,” said Fahey.
Funds were raised though donations from businesses and individuals, as well as a raffle draw for a $1,000 gift certificate at Inglis Jewellers in downtown Truro.
He said the program’s first year was “an overwhelming success” and is aiming to launch a more aggressive campaign in 2014, enabling them to assist even more people in need.
“It feels great. I just wish we could do more,” said Fahey. “I think we got a lot of traction this year and we’ve created a good brand.”
The spokesman said the number of people assisted by the association this year “was all a reflection of the amount of money we were able to raise.”
Assistance was provided through an application process. One applicant was awarded a $3,000 package with gift cards from several local businesses, while 46 others were provided with $500 in assistance.
Items in the gift certificate packages included gas, food, clothing, household items, toys and more.
People requesting help were invited to submit an application to the association board on their own behalf and nominations were also received.
“There were more personal applications but there were a fair number of nominations as well,” said Fahey. He estimates about 20 per cent of the submissions received were nominations.
The evaluation process was done by the association’s board of directors, which has an equal number of men and women represented.
“There were a lot of touching stories and a lot of people reached out,” said Fahey.
He said the program would be offered again in 2014 and is looking forward to increasing the number of people benefiting from the initiative.