During our campaign to raise $250,000 in honour of our 25th birthday we reached out to some of our long-term supporters to find out what inspires them to give to Zero Ceiling. One of those people was Janet, a Zero Ceiling monthly donor – of which we have 22. Monthly donations are incredibly valuable to any nonprofit organization. They provide monthly funding we can rely on and proves that we have supporters that think our work is worth supporting on an ongoing basis.
Janet chooses to give to Zero Ceiling specifically because it’s a cause that sits close to her heart. As someone who was adopted at an early age, Janet is very aware that her life could’ve gone a very different way. Thankfully, she was brought up in a family who supported her throughout her childhood and continues to do so. This is something she’s incredibly grateful for. She sees the need for organizations like Zero Ceiling because some people aren’t as lucky as her, and she recognizes this and wants to help support them. Janet was lucky to avoid going through the foster system, and never had to sleep on the streets. But she knows that this isn’t the case for a lot of young people. This includes some of the people we support through our Work 2 Live program and the Adventure Sessions.
Janet is incredibly fond of the Adventure Sessions because she sees the need for access to the outdoors for everyone. Whistler is a beautiful spot, surrounded by mountains and lakes allowing for some hugely beneficial access to the outdoors. But in the winter, accessing the mountain is quite costly. Before even arriving at the gondola, people have paid both their money and time to get up or down the Sea to Sky highway. This can be a treacherous journey on many occasions due to the road and weather conditions. They need access to the appropriate clothing and equipment, and then they need money for a pass. Skiing and snowboarding is an activity for the privileged, and some people simply aren’t able to access it.
The Adventure Sessions gives young people experiencing hardships the opportunity to access the outdoors. Thus giving them a way to connect with the land through these snow sports. “It’s such a gift, and it can be life changing for people,” Janet said.
The reason Janet chooses to donate on a monthly basis is also a way to lead her kids by example. Giving is so important, whether it’s through money or time, it’s such a valuable thing to give. “A lot of giving comes from how you were raised. It’s kind of a habit, and it’s better when built from a young age”. Janet explained, “I’m wanting my kids to have giving back as a habit, whether they can financially or with their time”.
“Whistler is not an easy place to live. It takes resilience even for people who have advantages, privilege and who have more financial resources than other people. I don’t necessarily give a lot in the grand scheme of things but it’s what I can give, and it can make a difference. Even if you don’t have that ability for a monetary donation, to be able to give your time is amazing, to make those connections and help the community.”