EDITORIAL: Most generous city

Generosity is always a highly regarded trait, and this city’s residents embody the spirit of giving.

Generosity is always a highly regarded trait, and this city’s residents embody the spirit of giving.

For nine straight years, donors in Abbotsford/Mission have been the most generous in the country.

Statistics Canada reveals that 2010 tax filers in this community claimed an average of $620 in charitable receipts. This was well ahead of the second most charitable cities – Calgary and Victoria – at $390. It was also more than double the national median of $260.

To do this once is noteworthy, but nine times in consecutive years is a tremendous accomplishment.

Those who work for social relief agencies in Abbotsford say that when the calls goes out for a cause, the community responds.

Filomena Nalewajek of Canuck Place Abbotsford found this when she started fundraising for the children’s hospice here. Ahead of schedule on her $9.75-million fundraising campaign, she told The News the community support surprised her.

It’s not just a group or demographic that makes the difference, it is an attitude that has become part of the character of the city.  It is evident during fundraising, and it is just as prominent when people are asked to donate their time to help with a community event.

There is still much to be done, as the operators of local charities such as the Salvation Army and food bank will attest. At this time of year, they still need your support to make sure everyone in this city has a warm and well-fed Christmas.

There are many excellent causes in this community deserving of your support, such as the Christmas Bureau, Mennonite Central Committee and all of the elements of the Campus of Care.

Next year, we expect to report that Abbotsford will have maintained its “most generous” status for a full decade, thanks to you.