The Oceanside Grandmothers to Grandmothers (G2G) will host their 13th annual Christmas Extravaganza this year, but instead of in-person, they’ll host a ‘by-appointment’ pop-up sale.
The pop-up sale runs until Dec. 18, and the items for sale can be viewed from the organization’s facebook profile: facebook.com/oceanside.grannies. Anyone interested in purchasing items will need to make a scheduled appointment to pick them up.
G2G is a Canadian organization that raises funds to help grandmothers in sub-Saharan Africa raise their orphaned grandchildren who have been effected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic. The organization’s website states that all funds go to reliable grassroots projects through the Grandmothers Campaign of the Stephen Lewis Foundation.
Anne Tardiff and Pamela Vest, both members of G2G, said the pop-up will sell many of the same items as their ‘in-person’ extravaganza, such as handmade cloth bags, wreaths, and other handmade items. For those who would like to purchase a Christmas cake they can contact Tardiff directly at 250-248-1210.
“Our members are really cautious, considering the age group that we’re dealing with. There’s a definite risk,” said Tardiff. “We don’t want to put our grandmothers or our clients in harm’s way.”
Both Tardiff and Vest believe the people management of past extravaganzas would have created more complications than the organization could deal with.
Last year’s GTG extravaganza at the Quality Resort Bayside had approximately 16,00 people attend over the two-day event. Tardiff said that this year, due to the current provincial health order which prohibits a gathering in excess of 50 people, the queue management would have been strict to enforce.
“We don’t want to be policing people,” said Vest.
“We know that all of our customers come (to past extravaganzas) because they want to support the cause,” said Tardiff.
“It would be really nice to achieve a $20,000 goal. Of course, we’d be grateful for any donation.”
She said the 2019 event totalled $22,000 altogether, which includes sales and monetary donations. Tardiff said they hope to continue to raise funds as food becomes scarce in Africa due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Even though they get their medication, it won’t work when you don’t have food in your stomach.”
For those who would like to support G2G’s cause, but prefer to do so by donation, Tardiff said cheques can issued to the Steven Lewis Foundation, then mailed to Ruth Epp, G2G treasurer, #206-255 Hirst Ave. West, Parksville, V9P 1P5.
The Steven Lewis foundation will issue a tax receipt for each monetary donation.