As part of my participation in David Miller’s election campaign in 2002, I had an eye-popping exposure to parts of Toronto that I only knew by name and often less than stellar reputation. What impressed me was the will of the people I met to make things better. They included some extraordinarily innovative people leading grass roots community and heritage projects. It inspired my own activism in these areas. When Janis approached me about The Funding Network, I thought it would be a terrific way to help those very people and others like them. My role is to liaise with the charities whose projects are chosen in order to help them with their presentations. I never fail to be impressed by their focus, commitment, and ability to make so much difference with such limited resources to the lives of the people they help.
Of course as a network, it is members who bring in other members, but I must say that at the beginning, when I only knew the people who came at my suggestion, I felt a bit awkward among so many people that I didn’t know. However, there is nothing like a common cause to bring people together and I really look forward now to seeing everyone at each event as I’ve come to know all of the regulars, while happily welcoming newcomers. The range of members is amazing—from business leaders to athletes, grass rooters and everyone in between—and it’s really super to see everyone, no matter what their means, pull together. For some of our charities, the difference between receiving and not receiving as little as $50 makes the difference between helping and not helping one more family.