The Gleaner

Pop-up garage sale at OES exceeds expectations

Ormstown Elementary School (OES) students had high expectations for their pop-up thrift shop, an event conceived to raise funds for Ukrainian refugees due to arrive in the Valley. Grade 5 and 6 students worked hard organizing and sorting the items that began to arrive at the school in late April. From books to toys and everything in between, the community donated used and sometimes new items to the student-led event.

Several exceptional donations by parents and community members were put aside to be a part of the silent auction that took place over the two-day sale. Included were jugs of maple syrup donated by the McCaig family, a signed print donated by the Loiselle family, a mirror made by Roy Templeton, a certificate for car detailing donated by Lavage Barkley, a baby shower basket made and donated by Lisa Duchesneau, and a painting and gift items from Serenplicity donated by Cathy McFarlane Dunn. OES staff members also contributed items to the silent auction.


Ormstown Elementary’s gymnasium filled up quickly as shoppers came to support the fundraiser and get great deals at the same time. PHOTO Yvonne Lewis Langlois


On May 4 and 5 the community turned up in great numbers for the sale. Students took shifts to handle sales and the cash boxes throughout. Customers often donated their change from a sale or just handed over a twenty-dollar bill in support of the cause.

In total, $3,037 was raised for the Ukrainian families. Money from the OES event will be offered to Chateauguay Valley for Ukraine, a group led by Stephane Maynard. Funds will be used to support Ukrainians fleeing their war-torn country. “We are getting excited and looking forward to families arriving,” says Maynard. There are four families due to arrive in the Valley. Maynard reports, “One family will arrive next week and another possibly the week after.” Many families, stranded in Poland and Romania, are waiting for as long as six to seven weeks for visas to come through. This waiting time is costly, so fundraising will go a long way in supporting the families when they arrive here. “These donations are so important, because the longer [the families] wait in another country without a job, the more they deplete their bank accounts,” states Maynard.

In order to share information with the community, Maynard set up the Facebook page, Chateauguay Valley for Ukraine. At present, its 335 followers can connect the initiative with other groups working for the cause.

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