Many of you know that the annual Mason and Friends Charity Day has raised thousands of dollars for the YMCA to send children to summer camps. Last year at Tim’s event, Grace Li of the YMCA floated the idea of bringing a group of newcomers to our club, as part of a program that introduced newcomers to Canada to various Canadian sports and activities.

Long story short, 30+ visitors came to enjoy their introduction to lawn bowling on a very warm summer evening.  I can’t thank our volunteers enough: Flo, Brian, Olivia, Homa, Pat S, Jack, Radka and David.  You made the event so much fun with the instruction and the encouragement and the praise you shared.  Thanks go to Duncan Campbell as well who helped with the heavy part of the set up!

There were so many countries represented; I discovered arrivals from China, Pakistan, Syria, Iraq, and I am sure there were many more nationalities there.  So many of us immigrants arrive with our immediate families, or have relatives to look after us, or we know some good friends to ease the transition.  This evening taught me that the YMCA provides a wonderful program for those who arrive with no-one and nothing, and English is not their first language making everything that little bit harder.

So thank you to everyone, to the YMCA staff and volunteers, to the newcomers who want to make Canada their home, and to our club volunteers for being such a fun part of an amazing program.

Sue Hall




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