Geoff is proud to be Chair of Kenya Inititiave for Development & Sustainability (K.I.D.S) www.KIDSInitiative.ca. We have just recently registered this new charity and our mission is to build Children's futures globally while inspiring Children locally. We hope to inspire local Children to raise funds for and to travel to Kenya.
Kenya has been severely affected by drought and extreme poverty which seriously impacted the future of Kenya's children. Child deaths, injuries, malnutrition, lack of education and displacement are some of the many issues Kenya has dealt with.
K.I.D.S. supports development and sustainability in Kenya by
providing food relief to the Masaai community following drought and famine;
funding clean water projects;
helping to fund the Anytown Africa Feasibility Study (a study conducted to establish a camp to address tribalism/racism issues in Kenya);
helping to finance the construction costs for local orphanages;
helping to provide Emergency Relief Funding for Internally Displaced Persons;
providing medical care for children in Kibera; and
paying school fees for impoverished children and HIV/AIDS orphans in Kibera.
Businesses Have Transcona’s Back
A trio of area businesses are paying it forward by making significant contributions to the Transcona Centennial Square project.
The Transcona Business Improvement Zone recently announced that three local businesses contributed $245,000 towards the $2.4 million cost of the project, which is aimed at recognizing the neighbourhood’s 100th anniversary.
The three businesses include Geoff and Regan Archambault of Century 21 Realty, Wyatt Dowling Insurance and New Flyer Industries.
The contributions were part of a major fundraising campaign undertaken by the Transcona BIZ .
BIZ executive director Wendy Galagan said the private sector contributions were welcome additions.
The Archambaults’ contribution will go to toward the cost of a performance pavilion while Wyatt Dowling’s will be used for a community wall of fame. New Flyer’s funding will be used for the Peace Water Fountain.
Regan Archambault said it was important for she and her husband to contribute to the community that has supported their business over the years.
"We’ve been involved in the community for quite some time," she said. "When we were approached with this sponsorship opportunity we were quite happy to get on board with this because it will definitely be an asset to the area and we can’t wait to see it come to life."
Wyatt Dowling president Curtis Wyatt said the decision to contribute to the project was a no-brainer since his father started his insurance business in Transcona 40 years ago.
"Our business was founded 40 years ago directly across the street from the new Transcona Square," he said.
"We’ve remained in this community since then and it seemed only natural to continue to create a safe environment for families to go and enjoy the outdoors as a long standing part of this community."
Galagan said the Centennial Square project will have a lasting impact on the community
"It will be a community gathering site with year-round programming that will offer a location for the business community, residents, organizations and associations to meet and gather to celebrate the community," she said.
Local Couple Make Contribution to Parks
Geoff and Regan Archambault saw a need in their community, and decided to do something about it.
The married couple spent 14 years living in Harbour View South before moving to East St. Paul.
Even though they moved away, they still wanted to give back to the community that was their home for so long. As a result, they decided to improve two parks in the area.
"We always feel a need to give back to the community," Geoff said. "A park is a great place for families to meet and have fun."
The Archambaults have committed $120,000 of their own money to improve Harbour View South Park at the corner of Rutledge Crescent and McLellan Drive. The city is contributing $25,000 while the province will provide an additional $30,000.
Improvements will include a picnic shelter, play structure for younger kids, new benches, 35 new trees, and improved drainage in the swing area.
Work on the project is expected to start in September or October.
"We’re trying to make it more age-friendly. Right now it’s geared towards kids aged six to 12," Regan said.
The park was renamed Archambault Park in June to recognize the family’s contributions to the project.
To celebrate the upcoming renovations, the Archambaults staged a movie screening on July 23.
According to Geoff, 250 residents from the community came out to enjoy the day, which concluded with a screening of Rio.
Area resident Reid Kenyon took in the event, and said the Archambaults are making a much-needed contribution to the community.
"The parks in our area are outdated and in desperate need of a facelift," Kenyon said. "The investment they are providing in improving our parks will enhance the quality of life."
In addition to donating the money to improve the park in Harbour View South, the Archambaults also plan donate $30,000 to upgrade Sunrise Park, located down the street on Shauna Way.
The Sunrise Park upgrade will also receive $20,000 from the city and $10,000 from the Rotary Club of Winnipeg East AM, which Geoff currently serves as president of.
"You can’t wait for someone else to do it," Regan said. "When you see the need and have the means, you should do it."
The couple is hoping that the renovations will entice more people to get outside and enjoy the parks in their neighbourhood.
"It is very important to have parks and recreational offerings for our kids close to home," Kenyon said. "Families will want to spend time together at these parks."
The Geoff & Regan Scholarship - River East Transcona School Division - Each year since 2009 we offer 3 scholarships to the 3 EK/NK high schools, Miles MacDonell, River East and Kildonan East. The recepient is a student who has given back to the community by giving their time, raising funds and doing anything good for the Community. We feel that a strong Community makes for a strong City and like to recognize the students who have done good for their school and community as a whole.
Springfield Heights Elementary School - Regan has been working hard over the past 3 years chairing a committee to "Green" the playground at Springfield Heights School in North Kildonan. This project has involved planting of 25 new trees, adding much needed shade for the children while they play. It also has added a sharing garden where the kids plant vegetables and share them with the local food bank in the area. There is also a new scensory garden and a butterfly garden where the kids are involved with maintaining and learning about nature. We also have a new play structure going in and a wheelchair accessible outdoor classroom for the teachers to take the kids outside to learn.
Childrens Wish of Manitoba/Nunavut Chapter - www.ChildrensWish.ca - Geoff has recently been asked to join the board of the Children's Wish Foundation. We are also regular supporters of their annual Shiver Ball and many other fundraisers throughout the year.
Big Brothers of Winnipeg - Geoff was a little brother when he was growing up and remained friends with his big brother until his recent passing. He is also very proud to be the official spokesperson for the 2011 fall recruitmant campaign with radio commercials running on 1290 sports Radio. There are normally about 100 boys on the waiting list for a Big Brother. We were also the major sponsors for their 2011 Christmas auction with Hustler & Lawless on 1290 Sports Radio.
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