This is Kim from Reading Matters. It’s been a difficult week for those of us coming to terms with Kevin’s passing. Even though we may never have met him in person, we have all developed individual relationships with him via this blog and our shared love of literature.
I asked Sheila, his wife, whether there was some tangible way that Kevin’s online friends could honour him; was there a charity, for instance, that people could support?
This was Sheila’s response:
“We are asking that people donate to Bow Valley College’s 1000 Women Rising.
“This is a fund that Kevin and I made a large donation to in order to help get it started last June. Bow Valley College is a wonderful institution that caters to immigrants who are trying to get accreditation to get jobs and start their lives in Canada. Many of the students are single mothers, who have come here to make a better world for themselves and their children.
“The 1000 Women Rising fund was set up to help women overcome that very last barrier to getting a job. Once they graduate, they might need child care, transportation to an interview, accent mitigation help, interview skills workshop, some personal grooming help…etc etc. We love the idea that a small barrier, which must seem insurmountable, can be knocked down by providing a person with the modest monetary resource they need for that last step. We also love the idea that by making the money available, the women feel that the community has their back, and we WANT them to be successful and have a wonderful life here in Calgary.
“Kevin used to be on the board of Bow Valley College. He would come home from board meetings and go on and on about how much he loved the place, because the students were so determined, and were heroic in overcoming so many barriers to pursue their dreams.”
Sheila also said that during Kevin’s illness, many of the caregivers — at home, in the hospital and in the hospice — were graduates from Bow Valley College’s Licensed Practical Nurse program. That, alone, is a wonderful reason to support it in whichever way you can — no donation is too small.
To find out more about the charity, please visit the official website.
To make a donation, please click here.
If you’re on social media do feel free to use the hashtag #1KWR to raise awareness of the charity.