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MCC Relief Sale raises money for African education programs

Hertha Penner and George Engbrecht, volunteers with the Mennonite Central Committee, help with a fundraising auction at the Keystone Centre during the MCC Relief Sale on Saturday. The annual auction, which drew hundreds to the Manitoba Room, is a major fundraiser for the organization.

COLIN CORNEAU/BRANDON SUN Enlarge Image

Hertha Penner and George Engbrecht, volunteers with the Mennonite Central Committee, help with a fundraising auction at the Keystone Centre during the MCC Relief Sale on Saturday. The annual auction, which drew hundreds to the Manitoba Room, is a major fundraiser for the organization.

With a baby bouncer in one hand and baked goods in the others, Vic and Lila Martens left the Mennonite Central Committee Relief Sale all smiles knowing the loot was sure to generate more ear-to-ear grins in the near future.

Members of Lewis Auctions conduct the Mennonite Central Committee fundraising auction. In past years, the annual auction, has raised about $125,000.

Enlarge Image

Members of Lewis Auctions conduct the Mennonite Central Committee fundraising auction. In past years, the annual auction, has raised about $125,000. (COLIN CORNEAU/BRANDON SUN)

Audience members listen to the Mennonite Central Committee fundraising auction at the Keystone Centre on Saturday afternoon.

Enlarge Image

Audience members listen to the Mennonite Central Committee fundraising auction at the Keystone Centre on Saturday afternoon. (COLIN CORNEAU/BRANDON SUN)

"It’s not for our children, it’s for the grand(child)," Vic Martens said, displaying the colourful green and purple bouncer proudly.

The Killarney couple were volunteers at one of the many tables at the sale.

They said the choice to buy the goods was an easy decision knowing the toys and food would only generate more smiles in their household while, at the same time, helping a worthy cause.

"This year, the money is going to educational programs in African countries," said Abe Dyck, the Macgregor-based chairman of the MCC Relief Sale committee.

Dyck has been a mainstay at the event, involved in 26 of the 28 MCC Relief Sales and is known by most people familiar with the sale as the "Vegetable Man" because he typically picks up the donations of fresh vegetables.

In total, about 20 church groups from across Westman work to pick up donations that range from baked goods to furniture to homemade quilts to hogs.

In past years, the sale has raised about $125,000 — a testament to the generosity of the people from the area, Dyck said.

"People buy pies for $30 or $40 and it’s obviously not because the pie is worth that much, but because they want to buy them here and know they are helping out," he said.

» ctweed@brandonsun.com

Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition September 24, 2012

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With a baby bouncer in one hand and baked goods in the others, Vic and Lila Martens left the Mennonite Central Committee Relief Sale all smiles knowing the loot was sure to generate more ear-to-ear grins in the near future.

"It’s not for our children, it’s for the grand(child)," Vic Martens said, displaying the colourful green and purple bouncer proudly.

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With a baby bouncer in one hand and baked goods in the others, Vic and Lila Martens left the Mennonite Central Committee Relief Sale all smiles knowing the loot was sure to generate more ear-to-ear grins in the near future.

"It’s not for our children, it’s for the grand(child)," Vic Martens said, displaying the colourful green and purple bouncer proudly.

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