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Les Sinnott, on behalf of the Royal Canadian Legion branch, 13 hands over $10,000 cheque to Bill McRae who accepts in on behalf of the Happy Gang Centre
REPORTING · 10th February 2011
Merv Ritchie
(Edited, Sunday, February 13, 2011)

Today, at shortly after 2 pm, Thursday February 10, 2011, in front of 75 seniors the Royal Canadian Legion donated $10,000 to the Happy Gang Centre towards the elevator and renovation project. This along with the donation from the Terrace 2010 BC Winter Games Legacy fund sends the total raised for the project to the top of the chart.

The core of the renovations is to provide an elevator to the downstairs recreation area of the centre. Currently there is a long flight of steep stairs and for some elderly retired folks it can be intimidating and for others simply impossible. The second aspect is to level the floor. For reasons unknown a large area in the middle of the downstairs was raised by three to four inches after the original floor was poured. This presented as a hazard. If one were standing on the raised area and absent mindedly stepped backwards off of the raised portion the injuries could be serious. Some have fallen according to Broughton and this hazard needed to be removed.

Today the floor is relatively level again as crews have recently come in and ‘jack hammered’ out the raised portion. Next will be the re-flooring of this surface with special thin tiles. The area will be used for various floor games such as curling and carpet bowling.

The elevator contract has being selected and the company agreed to throw in a package of extras when they realized who would be using the elevator. Free emergency lighting, handrails, automatic door opener, auto reset to floor level during a power outage and even the optional emergency phone was added. They even lower the price offering this elevator at the same price they charged for the new elevator installed at City Hall last year. This elevator is full size, not half walls, and has a much greater capacity.

Les Sinnott came forward on behalf of the Legion to present the cheque to Bill McRae who accepted it on behalf of the Happy Gang Centre. Sinnott explained the funds they were able to donate came from the entire community. It was a requirement, and part of the bylaws the legion, that the funds raised during the Poppy drive could not be used for the Legion and their facilities, these funds must be used for projects that assist and benefit Veterans and their families. This he explained was a perfect fit.

Bill McRae started (Correction; Bill was a founding member and helped to build) the Happy Gang Centre 31 years ago and is a life member of the Legion. He stated to the crowd gathered that his wife is a constant companion in his life when he came on board to help organize this fund raising effort they got a deal, two for one.

The Happy Gang Centre provides a venue for seniors to get together rather than being generally alone and house bound. All of the services are provided by volunteer

The Happy Gang Centre themselves committed $45,000 from their own bank account to kick off the fund raiser and many Terrace residents, companies and regional entities have contributed to make this effort a success.

Here is a partial list of all those who helped make this a success;

WH McRae, J. MacKenzie, C. Cameron, C. Stewart Enterprises, Norma Helgason, B.L. Trudell, Penny Lane, Betty Demmitt, Aileen Frank, Hidbur Holdings, D.W. Strangway, Back Eddy Pub, Timber Baron Contracting, R. Purmal, Marily Hornburg, Hardy Mehs, Northwest Fuels, Les Bryant, W.J.F. Reynolds, Tosca Constante, Progressive Ventures, D. Horwill, Gobind Enterprises, Emil Wirtl Construction, L Parmeter, Aqua Plumbing, MacAlpine & Co, V. Froesse, Skeena Diversity, G. Wilson, Terrace Builders Centre, Nechako Northcoast, All West Trading, Remax Coast Mountains, Terrace Foresters, Northern Savings Credit Union, Gemma’s Bed and Bath, Terrace and District Medical Association, V. Nordstrom, Royal Bank, Dr. J. Dunfield Inc, FAC Brouwer, G & B Watmough, Dr. BL Phillips, MA Ramage, Canadian Tire, Royal Canadian Legion Branch 13, All West Glass, BC Winter games Legacy Fund, Terrace, H & D Holtom, D. Thomson.
Thx for the example
Comment by Maggie Johnson on 12th February 2011
Thank you to all who were convicted to step up to the plate to help our local seniors who have put so much into this Community in their younger years; while timidly requesting some assistance now in their aging years.

In our very busy lives, we often tend to host a bad habit of forgetting about the more vulnerable. So, thanks to Terrace Daily who spread the news on the plight of the Happy Gang Centre...we are now witnessing the Community rally together yet again. The Community is rallying for the often forgotten elderly, which is very touching!

Reminds me of how WELL this Community can pull together. Remember Hockeyville? Remember the Community pulling together hosting fundraisers for families in need when personal tragedies strike? Remember how many volunteers take time outta their work/personal lives to enhance this City pulling volunteer work outside of their busy work/family lives? Like the Terrace Beautification Society, and the Band programs in schools and the teachers who work feverishly for our children, and the RCMP who are stressed to the limit trying to keep the peace, and the businesses who serve us in the interim IE the local cafe shops early a.m. who when seeing us enter an establishment, are already preparing our a.m. Java by memory.

We're all in this together folks. Let's all look beyond our busy work/family schedules and try to enhance this Community by little things we do every day. 'Come across some litter in your neighborhood? Pick it up. Witness a child being bullied? Step in. Notice an injustice? Speak up. Witness a great deed? Say so to that recipient.

What I'm trying to get at is: Let's face it. We're all in this together. If all of us are on board...wouldn't this REALLY be the "greatest place on earth" to live...just like the commercial ads say so???
so very proud of you...
Comment by dawna on 11th February 2011
Way to go Susan... fantastic job...
Comment by m.b.weston on 10th February 2011
Congratulations to everyone for their efforts!