By Cady Corman
Special to Black Press
Habitat for Humanity Vancouver Island North (Habitat VIN)’s third annual Bid to Build Online Auction brought together the community like never before.
Volunteers, businesses, community partners, and bidders came together to raise over $46,000 towards building safe and affordable homes.
Not only did this year’s auction items close at $5,000 more than last year’s auction, but the non-profit also reported an increase in volunteer engagement, donors, and registered bidders.
More than 180 businesses and professionals donated 251 auction items. This is the first year that every single auction item was bid on.
Habitat VIN credits the success to its strong fundraising volunteer team, including many future Habitat homeowners, who worked tirelessly to brainstorm ideas, call donors, schedule and pick up donations, and more.
The auction included a draw for every bidder who used the ‘buy-it-now’ button, set at double the item’s established value, to win a secret prize sponsored by Brian McLean and Tyee Chevrolet Buick GMC Ltd. There were 37 entries, and the lucky winner received a two-night stay in the Villa Suite at the Crown Mansion in Qualicum and a gift card to its restaurant.
Even with the auction’s success, Habitat VIN’s financial need remains with inflation impacting everyone in the building industry, including non-profits.
“The cost of construction has never been higher,” explained Jeff West, Habitat VIN’s executive director. “We’re feeling the impact of inflation and supply chain issues. It’s heartening to see both individuals and businesses in the community step up in such a big way when we need their support more than ever.”
If you missed this year’s auction, or got a great deal on your bid and want to pay it forward, you can make a donation towards Habitat VIN’s upcoming affordable housing projects at habitatnorthisland.com/donate.
Cloutier Matthews Professional Chartered Accountants and Temprite Climate Solutions were the auction’s presenting sponsors for the third year in a row. The Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce, Campbell River Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Courtenay BIA, Downtown Comox BIA, Downtown Campbell River BIA, and Cumberland Business Association acted as supporting partners. The Campbell River Mirror, the Comox Valley Record, and 97.3 The Eagle helped spread the word as media sponsors.
Cady Corman is the director of communications and fundraising for Habitat for Humanity Vancouver Island North