The Coldest Night of the Year 2022 will be held on Feb. 6. Though the fundraising committee is unsure whether regulations will permit a live event, they are confident the community will still partake in this annual fundraiser for The Grind Pembroke. The fundraising committee met on Jan. 3 to discuss the event. Enjoying the cold weather, in the back are Committee Member Mike Gulliver, co-chair Matt Hutten, and Deacon Adrien Chaput. In the front, from left, are Treasurer Carolyn Henderson, Stephanie Loback holding her daughter Jasmine and Co-Chair Bonnie Harnett. Wes Thomson, Jennifer Blanchard, Mojo Martin, and Neil Montgomery are missing from the photo. (Photo by Patricia Leboeuf, Petawawa Post)
2022 CNOY participants will walk together for The Grind on Feb. 6
By Patricia Leboeuf
Posted on Thursday January 13, 2022
The Grind Pembroke’s mission is to help those in need, feeding and connecting people to resources that will get them off the streets and into warm, safe homes. Just last year, The Grind volunteers provided over 16,000 hot meals to the members of the community.
Since the government doesn’t directly fund the agency, it requires community generosity and fundraisers to keep its programs running, fundraisers like the 2022 Coldest Night of the Year (CNOY).
“It is our biggest fundraiser of the year,” said CNOY Co-Chair Bonnie Harnett. “It’s what helps keep The Grind being able to help our vulnerable community.”
CNOY has become an annual tradition in Pembroke. This year, it will be held on Feb. 6.
Traditionally, event participants walk two or five km through the Pembroke downtown core. However this year, organizers are unsure whether the CNOY can be held in-person or if it will have to migrate online. Regardless of format, their aim is that participants have an amazing time.
“We’ve got a lot of surprises this year that will be popping up over social media,” said Harnett. “We are hoping it will be an in-person walk, but with the way COVID is right now, it may turn into a virtual. Which is ok because that can make it even more fun with lots of videos and Facebook Lives.”
Last year’s virtual format was a huge success.
The 2021 CNOY raised about $88,000, several thousand over their stated goal. This money allowed The Grind to build a commercial kitchen to feed vulnerable community members.
Organizers hope to see that success duplicated in 2022. They’ve set a goal of $65,000 and are hoping to attract 300 walkers.
Any funds they raise will go towards The Grind’s programs, its community kitchen, and will assist in offering a Virtual Triage and Assessment Centre (VTAC) for medical care.
“We are seeing a lot more need for service navigation for our clients,” said Harnett.
“Just remember, it really is cold out there,” she added. “Last year, we helped 297 people get shelter, ... so it is one of those things that is needed.”
As the cost of food has spiked, holding this fundraiser is imperative for The Grind. It will also be a great night for all involved.
“This is awesome and I can’t wait to have more and more people join us, have captains form teams and continue to join together for this special event to raise money for The Grind Pembroke to help those in need in our community,” said Deacon Adrien Chaput, Director of The Grind.
Volunteers are also needed for the event as well.
For more information or to register as a participant, please visit cnoy.org.