General News

The Kids’ Clutter Is Back For Spring!

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Gear up for summer with all the great gear on sale at the YANA Kids’ Clutter Sale on Sunday, April 17th.

Join us at Courtenay Elementary, 1540 McPhee Avenue, from 10am until 2pm and shop until you drop. Clothing, shoes, books, toys, sports equipment, baby gear, and more, all at amazing prices!

This semi-annual sale is a ‘must’ for young families.

Kids Clutter April 2016

For more information click here.

Record amount raised at annual YANA auction

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Auctioneer Dave Stevens gets top dollar for a Steve Nash-autographed Los Angeles Lakers jersey at the YANA Big Love Benefit. - Photo courtesy McKinnon Photography

Auctioneer Dave Stevens gets top dollar for a Steve Nash-autographed Los Angeles Lakers jersey at the YANA Big Love Benefit. Photo courtesy of McKinnon Photography.

The Comox Valley residents showed a lot of love at the YANA Big Love Benefit, held at the Florence Filberg Centre.

The annual dinner and auction raised $87,000 for You are Not Alone, the community organization that helps Comox Valley families who need to travel to access medical treatment for their children.

It was the highest amount raised in the 26-year history of the event, and a 20 per cent increase over the $70,000 amount raised at the 2015 auction.

YANA community relations manager Ocean Varney said the generosity of the Comox Valley never ceases to amaze her.

“This was our first year calling it the Big Love Benefit and that’s fairly accurate. The people there were just full of love and generosity and fun,” she said. “It’s incredible, really. Every year seems amazing to me, but this was just unreal.”

“Corporate sponsorship was up this year, which is another big reason for that increased total. Because of sponsorship, all the expenses were covered and we could really give everything raised directly to the cause.”

It was not only the corporations coming through.

“The live auction was amazing,” said Varney. “We raised $30,000 in the live auction alone. That’s more than last year, with fewer items auctioned off.”

The silent auction items weaved a path throughout the facility, out the door and down the hallway, as more than 200 items were available.

The YANA crew will now turn its attention to the YANA (Spring) Kids’ Clutter Sale, Sunday, April 17 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Courtenay Elementary gym (1540 McPhee Ave.). There are many ways for the community to get involved in this event. More information here.

~Terry Farrell, Comox Valley Record

Big Love Benefit raises $87,000 for local children and their families

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The love shared at last Friday’s Big Love Benefit was big indeed and we are incredibly grateful for everyone’s contribution. Our hearts are so full. Thank you!

YANA Big Love Benefit Thank You

Tickets to YANA Big Love Benefit Sold Out Extremely Fast

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Tickets to the YANA Big Love Benefit sold out very quickly. If you would like to be added to a wait list, please email and specify how many tickets you hope to purchase. We will contact you if tickets become available. If you purchased tickets that you don’t need, please let us know as soon as possible. Thank-you!

YANA Big Love Benefit set for February 26th

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In its 26th year, the YANA Big Love Benefit, will host a fabulous crowd of supporters, who come for the food, friends, fun, and most importantly to be part of the giving that surrounds YANA in the Comox Valley.

Dinner by Tria Fine Catering and a silent auction are followed by a much anticipated photo Auction 2015presentation by McKinnon Photography, featuring a YANA family. A raffle for West Jet tickets and an exciting live auction add to the fun as do some other surprise additions to this year’s gala. As the organization’s largest annual fundraiser the event plays an important role in funding YANA’s programs.

Holding the event is a huge undertaking admits YANA Executive Director, Marcie Dumais, “This special night is possible only through the amazing efforts of our volunteers and the generosity of our community, which is at the heart of who we are and what we are able to accomplish.”

An example of the commitment of YANA’s volunteers is in auctioneer Dave Stevens who has been the evening’s auctioneer since its inception.

“I was approached by YANA founder, Sandra Williams, she had the idea of writing to celebrities for signed donations and auctioning them off, I immediately said ‘Let’s do it’,” remembers Stevens. “That was 26 years ago, the auction has changed and grown since then, I’d say it’s better than ever.”

“Dave leaves his winter retirement vacation early each year to fly back to the Comox Valley Dave Stevens at YANA's 2015 eventand be part of this event,” says YANA President, Judy Cryer. “We are truly humbled by his commitment to YANA and that of all our volunteers and donors who make this night possible.”

For his part Stevens is happy to do it, “There’s a wonderful feeling in the room,” he says. “It really is filled with some very big love!”

YANA provides accommodation and funding to Comox Valley families who need to travel for the medical care of a child or pregnant mother. Last year YANA was able to help 146 local children and their families.

To be part of the generosity that is required to host such an event, you can donate an item or service to the auction. Consider getting a group of colleagues, friends or teammates together to donate jointly. Or help cover event expenses by becoming a sponsor of the Big Love Benefit. Details on sponsorship opportunities are available upon request.

Interested in attending? Tickets go on sale Sunday, January 24th at 9:00am and are sold through YANA’s online ticket store. Tickets are $75 each. Last year tickets sold out in 5 minutes so mark your calendars and set your alarm clocks!

Local Chiropractors Give Back

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Dr. Marnie Grant and Dr. Ken Heinrich of Courtenay Family Chiropractic helped YANA start the new year off in the right direction with a donation that they hope will help strengthen local families.

Courtenay Family Chiropractic 2016

Dr. Heinrich and Dr. Grant, with Courtenay Chiropractic staff, present cheque to YANA Board Directors, Lauren Clark and Adam Wunderlich.

“Just as we are dedicated to wellness in our practice we want to contribute to the wellness of our community, we feel our best resource is in our expertise and looked for an opportunity to incorporate that with giving,” explains Grant.

Spinal Wellness Education proved just such an opportunity. These chiropractors regularly conduct complimentary spinal check-ups at various health expos in the Comox Valley. 100% of all fees collected for in-office check-ups that arise from these events are donated to YANA.

“It is through these events, with the help of all our amazing patients, past and present, that we are able to make this donation,” says Heinrich. “We have seen many clients through our practice and have personal friends who have benefitted from the care of YANA and we felt it was a perfect fit for our support.”

Dr. Ken and Dr. Marnie both have a passion for keeping familes healthy. They love raising their two beautiful daughters, and working in the Comox Valley. They both enjoy an active lifestyle and much of their spare time is spent, with their family, in the outdoors.

YANA Christmas cracker prize a win for everyone!

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This holiday season 5,000 YANA Cristmas crackers were sold across the Comox Valley. They contained the usual fun pleasures plus 50 crackers held special prizes, including one with a grand prize.

Braydon Nickel was the lucky winner of the 2015 grand prize, a diamond ring, donated by Mark the Gold Guy.

Ring Winner 2015

This gorgeous piece has an appraised value of $4545. Braydon opened the winner while celebrating at an early Christmas dinner with his family.

This fundraiser is a holiday tradition at YANA that is supported by the community. Volunteers spend hundreds of hours crafting these festive treats, local businesses sell them and many of our friends purchase and make them a special part of their Christmas celebration.

The proceeds from YANA Christmas crackers support our funding and accommodation program for families who must travel outside our community for the medical care of a child or pregnant mother. Last year YANA was able to assist 146 local children and their families. To find out more about how we help, click here.

A big thank you to everyone who made this campaign a success and such a big win for YANA!

Merry Christmas

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Happy holidays from the YANA Board of Directors!  Back left: Adam Wunderlich, Lauren Clark, Kelly Rusk, Kate Berg and Marcel Moose. Front left: Laura Bomback, Judy Cryer, Lesley Hunter and Hugh Mackinnon.  Missing from photo: Ron Arksey.


Save The Date

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The YANA BIG LOVE BENEFIT historically known as the YANA Dinner & Auction will be held Friday, February 26th, 2016 at the Florence Filberg in Courtenay. Tickets go on sale Sunday, January 24th at 9am. Tickets will be sold online through our ticket store. Last year we sold out extremely fast (under 5 minutes). Save the date and set your alarm clocks! Tickets cost $75 each, tax and fees included. We hope you will join us for this special evening filled with gratitude, friends and fun.  Interested in being a part of the ‘big love’ that is required to host this event?  More information here.

Auction 2015

Deck the Halls of Driftwood Mall!

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For 15 years, the Driftwood Mall has invited community members to decorate Christmas trees which are displayed in the mall concourse and auctioned off to support YANA Comox Valley.

Driftwood Mall Christmas 2015 074

Local businesses, families, and individuals get creative with these uniquely themed trees that celebrate the spirit of community giving. Auction winners take home a decorated tree, complete with gifts, and the proceeds help local families who need to travel for the medical care of a child under 19 or pregnant mother.

This Driftwood Mall tradition is a much anticipated holiday event.
“We’re always excited to see which businesses participate and how the trees look.” Says shopper, Katie Faith. “For the last couple of years we have bid on a tree and donated it to a local family, we love that we’re supporting YANA at the same time. It’s a great way to give twice”

Driftwood Mall Christmas 2015 010

The Comox Valley airport is sponsoring a tree for the second year in a row. Last year’s tree, aptly named ‘the Gift of Flight’ garnered a winning bid of $2,500. Driftwood Mall businesses are big supporters of this event, London Drugs, Quality Foods, and the Driftwood Lotto Center will be decorating again this year.

Among the annual favourites is a tree donated by the Chalifoux/Buschomb family, with hand painted gourds that celebrate a unique theme each year. Home Depot uses the colour orange to create its seasonal tree which this year comes with an electric hearth and stockings to hang on it. A weekend getaway at the Kingfisher that incudes a hydropath visit and some stocking stuffers from the spa is a must see!

“Mackenzie Gartside always does a rainbow themed tree with amazing gifts,” says Faith, adding, “But there’s an ‘Elf on the Shelf’ tree from the Comox Valley Business Network that I’ll be bidding on this year.”

Driftwood Mall Christmas 2015 003With over 25 trees to view and bid on, it’s a great place for families to stop and have some fun deciding on their favourite.

“This is such a neat event to attend,” says YANA President, Judy Cryer. “We are so grateful to the Driftwood Mall and all the wonderful businesses and individuals who donate these beautiful trees every year. We’re thrilled to be the beneficiary of such generosity.”

Viewing and bidding starts Saturday, November 21st and goes until Saturday, December 5th at 9pm. Winners take home their amazing trees on Sunday, December 6th.