Port Hardy council has denied a motion to donate to the 5th annual Wounded Warrior Run.
At the District of Port Hardy’s regular council meeting on Dec. 12 Mayor and council addressed a letter from Jacqueline Zweng, Director of the Wounded Warrior Run BC.
“This event has become the largest fundraiser for Wounded Warriors Canada on Vancouver Island and we are expanding our goal to $100,000 this year,” read Zweng’s letter, which continued stating “We need your help in reaching this goal – Please consider a minimum $1000 donation.”
Council then debated whether or not they should donate the requested amount on behalf of the town.
“It hasn’t been in our past history to donate $1000 from the district,” said Mayor Hank Bood. “I don’t think it’s entirely necessary in this case, I think often the best way to fund a program like this is for the community to get behind it and do their thing.”
Coun. Marcotte said he would be willing to make the motion to donate to the run. “They’ve never asked for a donation before … but they’ve asked and I’d make the motion if we can afford it.”
Coun. Tidbury then stated he would vote against the motion.
“I’d be voting against the donation simply because some people may not wish for the town’s money to go in that direction and if an individual wishes to donate then I think that is the way it should go,” he explained.
“I think we have done very well with Wounded Warriors in the past and the Legion really puts their support behind them and they walk out of here with a nice amount of cash,” added Bood.
When the motion that the district of Port Hardy donates a $1000 to the run came to a vote, the motion didn’t get enough votes to pass with only two councilors voting in favour.
The Wounded Warrior Run will begin in Port Hardy on Feb.19 where a half dozen runners will begin their almost 600kms journey to Victoria over seven days.
Their first stretch is 104 km to Woss and from there they will continue the next 76 km on to Sayward on Dec.20, eventually making it to Victoria six days later on Feb. 25.
“We are very truly honoured to be able to begin our journey in Port Hardy at Carrot Park. This year we will be gathering at the visitor centre at 6:30 am on Monday, Feb. 19 and then holding an opening ceremony at 7:00 am at Carrot Park with Elders of Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw,” explained Zweng in her correspondence.
“We would like to invite Mayor Bood and Council to join us for the morning and to see the runners off,” she added.
Bood noted that Coun. Marcotte would be volunteering with the event and making sure everything runs smoothly.
About the Wounded Warrior Run:
Wounded Warriors Canada was born in 2006 after a suicide bomber traveling on a bicycle near Kandahar City killed four Canadians and injuring a number of others.
The charity was then originally created to help members wounded in operations improve their morale and welfare. As the charity has evolved the scope of the mission has increased and become the nations leading, wholly independent, Veteran’s and First Responders’ charity focusing on Mental Health.
The run started in 2014 when a number of suicides by Canadian Veterans inspired two serving members to take action, by gathering a small group of athletes and running the length of Vancouver Island to raise awareness and money for Wounded Warriors Canada.
– With files from Tyson Whitney