In a play on words, Pincher Creek Co-op held its annual Fuel Good fundraiser Sept. 19 at its gas bars in Pincher Creek, Coleman and Sparwood. The feel-good event, started by Federated Co-operatives in 2017, has managed to raise nearly $3 million across Western Canada.
“It is every September, usually the third Tuesday of the month, and the individual location chooses a charity of their choice,” explained Kari Zieffle, manager of the Pincher Creek gas bar. “That charity then benefits from five cents a litre from every litre sold on that day.”
In the case of Coleman and Sparwood, it was for the local food banks. For the Ranchland Mall location, the fundraiser was for the Windy Slopes Health Foundation.
“The hospital benefits the entire community and, while we could easily choose another non-profit, we feel Windy Slopes plays an important role to not only Pincher Creek, but to Piikani and the surrounding region,” Kari said.
In the past, the health foundation has managed to raise thousands of dollars toward much-needed equipment in the hospital, she added.
“Our hospital, for example, might not be able to afford a CAT scan machine. I think, this year, they put new small appliances in the staff lounge — a toaster and microwave. They’ve bought ultrasound machines. They’ve bought things that the hospital needs, but are out of the purview of their current funding or what their funding might be.”
Kari said Co-op members were also allowed to hand over their coupons to go toward the grand total.
“We also donated one dollar from every coffee or slurpee we sold,” she said. “After we topped it up, we were able to donate $1,500 to Windy Slopes.”
For the Coleman and Sparwood gas bars, it was the first time Fuel Good Day was held.
“Thanks to the support of the two communities, it was a great success,” said Kayne Evans, the company’s business-to-consumer division manager. “The food banks in each location will be receiving $800 as a result.”