Accessibility/Mobile Features
Skip Navigation
Skip to Content
Editorial News
Classified Sites

Brandon Sun - PRINT EDITION

Fewer volunteers key to dip in Operation Red Nose rides, donations

Safety Services Manitoba director of marketing Anita Zubricki says when it comes to supporting Operation Red Nose, smaller centres sometimes have an edge over larger communities like Brandon.

FILE PHOTO Enlarge Image

Safety Services Manitoba director of marketing Anita Zubricki says when it comes to supporting Operation Red Nose, smaller centres sometimes have an edge over larger communities like Brandon.

Lack of volunteers is behind a drop in Brandon’s Operation Red Nose numbers this year, says an organizer.

Brandon users of Operation Red Nose were the third cheapest in the province, donating an average of only $13.99 per ride, about 21 per cent less than the provincial average.

Enlarge Image

Brandon users of Operation Red Nose were the third cheapest in the province, donating an average of only $13.99 per ride, about 21 per cent less than the provincial average. (TYLER STEPHENS/BRANDON SUN)

The dip in support has prompted organizers to encourage Brandonites to get behind the program, whether it’s by volunteering, or using the service and making a donation.

"Brandonites, get out there and support this program next year," said Anita Zubricki, Safety Services Manitoba’s director of marketing.

Safety Services Manitoba oversees the Operation Red Nose program, which ran in 11 Manitoba communities this year.

The program, which runs during the holiday party season, offers the inebriated a ride home in their own vehicle.

Donations are appreciated but not required. Donated funds are forwarded to local youth sports organizations.

In Brandon, for the last five years the service has been run by The Westman and Area Traditional Christmas Dinner and donations go to that cause and local youth sports programs.

This year, the Brandon operation recruited a team of 153 volunteers, provided 282 rides and collected $3,945 in donations.

Last season, it had 194 volunteers who provided 373 rides and gathered $4,370 in donations.

New Year’s Eve is the biggest night for Operation Red Nose.

This year, the program rang in the new year with 54 rides compared to 96 the previous year. The program made 125 trips the previous year.

Gladden Smith, a board member for the dinner and Operation Red Nose, says the reason for the falling numbers is a lack of volunteers — with more volunteers, more rides could have been provided.

That, in turn, would have heightened the potential to raise money.

"The rides and the donations are down because we didn’t have enough volunteers," Smith said.

For instance, there were only five three-member teams working New Year’s Eve.

To work that evening properly, Smith said, there should have been about 15 teams.

Red Nose’s phone lines were busy, he said, but the lack of teams meant longer wait times. At times, callers had left by the time teams arrived.

Smith said Brandon organizers are exploring options to encourage more volunteering next year.

That includes approaching service groups to participate, and the parents or relatives of the youth that benefit from donations.

Donna Wilkie. Safety Services Manitoba’s co-ordinator of community safety, points to other possible factors.

It was especially cold, which may have kept would-be partygoers home, or perhaps there were more house parties where guests could stay overnight instead of heading home.

Wilkie said she hopes it’s not because people are choosing to drink and drive.

It also may have something to do with how each organizing group promotes the program in their community, and the group running the program in a particular town.

In some communities, the host organization is a sports team with ready volunteers in the form of members.

In Portage la Prairie, which has roughly one-quarter the population of Brandon, a total of 476 rides were provided by 231 volunteers.

That city nearly tripled the number of donations collected in the Wheat City, with $9,061.

The local organizer there is the Portage Terriers hockey team, which has its own supporters, and the donations raised go to the team.

"Sometimes in the smaller communities they’re even more on board with it than some of the larger communities, because everybody in town knows about it," Zubricki said.

It’s also possible the increasingly successful CFB Shilo program has cut into the Brandon figures.

This marks the second year that a program has been run in Shilo, and its numbers were up this year.

That operation’s 163 volunteers gave 200 rides and collected donations that totalled $1,502.

In its first year, those numbers were 116 rides, 102 volunteers and $834.

On average, Brandon’s Operation Red Nose collected $13.99 per ride.

That was the third-lowest donation rate among the communities that run the program.

Smith noted that donations to charity in general have dropped.

» ihitchen@brandonsun.com

Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition January 10, 2014

  • Rate this Rate This Star Icon
  • This article has not yet been rated.
  • We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high. If you thought it was well written, do the same. If it doesn’t meet your standards, mark it accordingly.

    You can also register and/or login to the site and join the conversation by leaving a comment.

    Rate it yourself by rolling over the stars and clicking when you reach your desired rating. We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high.

Sort by: Newest to Oldest | Oldest to Newest | Most Popular 0 Commentscomment icon

You can comment on most stories on brandonsun.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is register and/or login and you can join the conversation and give your feedback.

There are no comments at the moment. Be the first to post a comment below.

Post Your Commentcomment icon

Comment
  • You have characters left

The Brandon Sun does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. Comments are moderated before publication. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Lack of volunteers is behind a drop in Brandon’s Operation Red Nose numbers this year, says an organizer.

The dip in support has prompted organizers to encourage Brandonites to get behind the program, whether it’s by volunteering, or using the service and making a donation.

Please subscribe to view full article.

Already subscribed? Login to view full article.

Not yet a subscriber? Click here to sign up

Lack of volunteers is behind a drop in Brandon’s Operation Red Nose numbers this year, says an organizer.

The dip in support has prompted organizers to encourage Brandonites to get behind the program, whether it’s by volunteering, or using the service and making a donation.

Subscription required to view full article.

A subscription to the Brandon Sun Newspaper is required to view this article. Please update your user information if you are already a newspaper subscriber.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

Brandon Sun Business Directory
Submit a Random Act of Kindness
Why Not Minot?
Welcome to Winnipeg

Social Media