It’s almost cliche to say I can’t believe how fast this year went by, but it is certainly true! As we collectively begin the process of simultaneously winding down while frantically trying to wrap up the lose ends, we are beginning to reflect back on 2018…. and what a year it was!
We started off the year down three staff members with a brand new thrift shop and will finish it off up six people and with a brand new location! In between, we saw more than 2,000 students in Food Secure Kids presented by Pembina Pipeline; sorted, tagged and hung NEAT Finds donations; let lose a gaggle of children into the woods to run Wild all summer; taught canning and fermenting classes; donated 635 jars of homemade preserves to the Salvation Army and Women’s Resources; continued a NEAT/PNG partnership with Energy is Awesome!; kicked off a brand new horticultural support program, the Northern Co-Hort; supported local municipalities with their recycling programs; hosted Soup Stock, the Pumpkin Plunge and a fundraiser and we moved!
Entering 2018 we had a goal to reach 3,000 people, 300 businesses, and start 3 new programs. We are very pleased to report that we reached our people and programs goal and are well within reach of our business outreach goal.
Undoubtedly, 2018 was a year of growth and exploration, fueled by creativity, excitement and a (small) side of fear – we charted the unknown, tried a heap of new things, had some great learnings and some equally great successes. The one thing, however, that shone through all of the rest this year was gratitude. We are thoroughly overwhelmed by the generosity of the community around us and the support you’ve provided over a very challenging year. From our regular NEAT Finds customers and $20 donations to the offers to host charity BBQ’s and program sponsorships, we literally could not have achieved what we did this year without you.
We have set our sights firmly on what we can accomplish together in 2019. But we need your help to ensure that NEAT ideas have the funding they need to succeed. Make a tax-deductible donation before the year ends, and help us keep up our current momentum.
On behalf of the staff and board of NEAT, we wish you and your family a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year.
PS. We have a brilliant 2019 planned and we cannot wait to get back at it after our staff enjoy a well earned holiday break. The Peace is our home and we are very proud to be working to build healthy, vibrant and connected communities here. Your support is the foundation of local programs for local communities.