It was a welcome return to the Quesnel Farmers’ Market for the Gold Pan Grannies. They recently hosted their annual perennial sale.
From bedding and vegetable plants to fruit trees, anything the Gold Pan Grannies could dig up was sold by donation Saturday, May 29 in which $1,000 was raised to support the Stephen Lewis Foundation’s Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign.
“It was terrific,” said acting president Joan McNaughton.”I think looking back on records, that was one of our biggest plant sales for sure.”
Primary gardener Dorie Havens helped lead their perennial fundraising project this year.
Dog snuffle mats and facemasks were also available.
A total of $800 worth of product was sold followed by a $200 donation.
The Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign supports grandmothers in Sub-Saharan Africa who are raising and attending to children orphaned as a result of the AIDS pandemic which McNaughton said is far from over.
While positive HIV individuals can lead a pretty much normal everyday life in advanced countries where medications are available, it’s not the case in Africa.
“It is still a very, very big deal and women take the brunt of that, so this is what we do, and these women have saved their communities basically,” McNaughton said.
“The Stephen Lewis Foundation supports the initiatives that the women know they need in their communities. We don’t go in there telling them what they need—they tell us what they need, and we help them accomplish it, so it’s wonderful.”
Last year the Gold Pan Grannies were unable to host their perennial sale and most other fundraising efforts due to COVID-19.
Despite that McNaughton said they still wound up having a terrific year.
Their annual fall fabric and yawn sale was hosted in a member’s garage with the public phoning ahead to arrange a time to attend, and in December, interest was high for their traditional Scottish shortbread that members baked in their own homes.
“Our little group since inception has raised by now towards $60,000, and all of it goes back to the Stephen Lewis Foundation,” McNaughton said.
The next possible fundraiser for the Gold Pan Grannies could be a garage sale this summer in the Johnson Subdivision.
Anyone interested in joining Gold Pan Grannies can contact McNaughton at 250-992-7485.
”You most definitely do not have to be a grandmother,” McNaughton said.
“You just have to understand what we’re raising money for and appreciate that.”