City of Alberni won’t give Port Alberni Toy Run a break

To the Editor,

Members of the Port Alberni Toy Run Society (PATRS) are disappointed in Port Alberni City Council for refusing their grant-in-aid request for the second year in a row.

During the past nine years, the PATRS has paid almost $17,000 to rent the Glenwood Centre, and donated another $5,000 to save the building from demolition three years ago.

As part of the grant-in-aid process, the PATRS had requested $586 to cover the cost of renting Glenwood Centre for Toy Run weekend.

This was a chance for the City of Port Alberni to recognize the huge boost the annual Toy Run gives to Alberni Valley children and the overall economy in Port Alberni.

Over the past 26 years, the Toy Run has raised more than one million dollars in cash and toys for local children and youth programs in the Alberni Valley and west coast communities.

The PATRS donates more than $5,000 each year to fund City of Port Alberni Parks and Recreation programs including First Night, Our Town, Starlight Movie Night, Easter Bunny Express, and Winter Wonderland.

The City of Port Alberni currently has a multi-million dollar surplus, but it has reduced grant-in-aid funding to local charities, meaning that some of these programs would be cancelled without PATRS funding.

The 27th annual Port Alberni Toy Run will roar into the Alberni Valley on Sept. 17 this year. We thank the people of Port Alberni for their continued support of this important event, and hope city council will join us in supporting programs and services for local children and families.

David Wiwchar

vice-chairman,

Port Alberni Toy Run Society