The Finning employees of Sparwood gathered in front of their offices last Friday afternoon to present a cheque, totalling $62,669.30, to the United Way East Kootenay (UWEK).
The amount raised is a combination of money donated by the employees themselves as well as Finning’s match system, which contributed dollar for dollar up to $1,500 per employee.
Tom Tobin, branch manager at Sparwood’s Finning explained, “It basically gives an employee of Finning the opportunity for their dollars to be doubly impactful. The people here at Finning are very charitable, they rally behind several different causes … this is just another opportunity for us to be more impactful in our community.”
Last year, Finning raised a total of $800 for UWEK.
Tobin explained that UWEK went to Finning on an education campaign, explaining how UWEK works and how their donations will remain in the community.
“Through that education process, we were able to tap into a generosity that already existed within our employees and give what I would say is a sizeable gift,” said Tobin.
Donna Brady Fields, executive director at UWEK, was on hand to receive the cheque.
“United Way works for social service change across Canada and over $500 million is raised every year,” said Brady Fields. “What we raise in the community stays in the community.”
Some local charities that could benefit from the money are the Sparwood food bank and Success by 6 — an early childhood development program that runs in Sparwood, Fernie and Elkford, Brady Fields noted.
Tobin said, “I’m really proud of the group and the team and I think it’s important to note that it’s not Finning that’s donating this, but the Finning employees of Sparwood that enabled this to happen.”
Finning is the largest Caterpillar equipment dealer with operations in British Columbia, Alberta and internationally.