An online auction for Community Living South Muskoka (CLSM) kicks off today, offering the chance to bid on collectibles, gift cards, home goods and more in support of CLSM’s services.
CLSM hosts a fundraiser on the Wenonah Steamship every year to raise money for their agency, which offers residential care through group homes, community participation and employment supports, and more for people with developmental disabilities. The agency receives limited funding from the government, making it essential for their team to fundraise in support of their operations. The COVID-19 pandemic complicated that task, raising expenses and reducing their ability to fundraise.
“Unfortunately, we had to cancel the majority of our fundraising activities this year,” said CLSM CEO Krista Haiduk-Collier. “We had to cancel [the boat cruise] and we really rely on those dollars. As you can imagine, COVID has added an exceptional amount of expenses to the agency.”
The boat cruise is one of the agency’s biggest fundraisers, offering a silent auction for attendees. While they won’t be able to take their supporters out on the water this time around, they’re still going to run the auction in a new virtual format.
“We’re doing online auctions because we do have a number of things that were donated to us,” Haiduk-Collier said. “We’re trying to generate some money that way and just trying to think a little bit outside the box of how to still generate a little bit of funds.”
The auction will run for 10 days, featuring a variety of items and experiences ranging from kitchen appliances to an afternoon on the golf course. All proceeds will help CLSM continue to provide 24-hour frontline support to people living with developmental disabilities in Muskoka.
“In the past, we would be out pretty hard in the community asking for support, but we know that businesses are struggling right now too,” Haiduk-Collier said. “We’re all kind of in this together.”
To participate in the online auction, click here.