Often when we donate to a charity or not-for-profit, we hear the expression “every dollar counts” and how the smallest contribution can still drive impact. It may seem like a catchphrase, but there is weight in those words. We are sharing a cheerful story that will unpack how a small donation can be maximized by paying it forward to a recipient for whom it would make a real difference.

On March 26th, two CCS staff members, Klara Frasheri, Language Instruction for Newcomers in Canada (LINC) Program Manager and Ewa Stankiewicz, Administrative Assistant, were outside our 4557 Hurontario Street location in Mississauga, when a middle-aged woman approached them in a somewhat hurried manner. Concerned, Klara inquired if she was looking for someone or something. The woman replied, “no, I am looking for a place to make a donation. A wish has come true, and you were the first people I saw”.

The mystery donor then handed Klara & Ewa a $50 bill!

Knowing that an explanation would be helpful to add context to this rather unorthodox donation, Klara asked the woman to write a small note to accompany the cash, which she did. The woman then disappeared as quickly as she appeared.

Pondering about what to do with this mystery donation, Klara decided to consult with her program team and spoke to a LINC Instructor, Jean Dub, who connected her to a student in her class who volunteers at a food bank in Mississauga. Ravi Sadak, the student, then connected Klara to Hanan, a coordinator at St. Mary’s food bank, located on Dundas Street East in Mississauga.

Food banks accept a variety of fresh and non-perishable foods to help support their community. The need is currently higher than ever, primarily because of the pandemic. After Klara connected with the coordinator, Hanan explained that fresh eggs or turkey are the best products to donate at this food bank. Eggs and turkey were requested because of their strong nutritional value (both are sources of protein) and the fact that they are not donated often. Keeping that in mind, Klara bought and donated 300 eggs to the food bank with the $50.

This story is a great reminder that you don’t have to commit large amounts of money to make an impact. Even a small donation can go a long way when maximized to its full potential. A mysterious donor, the proper connection, and a recipient in need were the perfect combination to make a big difference.

CCS would like to extend a big ‘thank you’ to the unknown donor, Klara and her team, LINC student Ravi Sadak, and the food bank for their support.

Like the saying goes: every dollar does count and every donation, no matter how small, will help somebody.