Calgary Timeraiser

June 09, 2008 11:05 ET

Calgary Timeraiser: It's Time to get in the Picture!

Calgary Timeraiser generates thousands of volunteer hours instead of dollars

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - June 9, 2008) - Getting involved in your community isn't always easy. That's why the Calgary Timeraiser is set to make it simple for people in their 20s and 30s to find meaningful volunteer opportunities to fit their busy lifestyles. The Timeraiser, Volunteer Calgary and 2335: A United Way Initiative are proud to announce that the 3rd Annual Calgary Timeraiser will be held on Thursday, June 19 at Flames Central. Tickets are available now online at www.timeraiser.ca.

"The Timeraiser is a charity art auction where rather than bidding money, participants bid volunteer hours towards an organization of their choice," says Robyn Crawford, a volunteer with United Way's 2335 initiative. "It's like speed dating for volunteers, as more than 20 nonprofits will be in attendance to discuss a wide range opportunities. Calgary artists also benefit, as they receive fair pay for their work thanks to corporate sponsors."

The Timeraiser is part volunteer fair, part silent art auction and part night on the town. The Timeraiser directly addresses the top three reasons why Canadians in their 20s and 30s are not volunteering: nobody asks, they don't have the time, and they don't know where to find meaningful volunteer opportunities. Two time Gemini award winning broadcaster and author Evan Solomon will be hosting the 3rd Annual Calgary Timeraiser. Solomon's work focuses on uncovering innovative solutions to the social and environmental issues facing today's world; he sees the Timeraiser as a unique approach to bridging the gap between Canadians in their 20s and 30s and the causes they care about.

The goal of each Timeraiser is to increase community engagement. To date, Timeraisers in Calgary and Toronto have generated over 31,000 volunteer hours, encouraged 2,000 Canadians to pick up a cause, invested $170,000 in the careers of Canadian artists and supported the efforts of 150 voluntary organizations. This year, organizations ranging from the Mustard Seed to the Calgary Zoo will be onhand for oneonone discussions about the hundreds of ways participants can immediately get involved and make a difference.

Jason Long participated in the second Calgary Timeraiser last year: "The Timeraiser was rewarding, fun and an incredible learning experience - great exercise for the body and mind. If you don't think you have the time to volunteer, just consider that all you need to do is turn off the TV for half an hour a day and you've got the three and a half extra hours a week you need to complete your pledge."

Long is just one of hundreds of past participants in Calgary and Toronto who are changing the landscape of volunteerism in Canada. 2008 marks introduction of First Annual Timeraisers in Vancouver and Ottawa. For more information about participating agencies and artists, or to learn more about the Calgary Timeraiser, please visit: www.timeraiser.ca.

Interviews with Timeraiser organizers, 2335: A United Way Initiative, participating agencies, artists and past volunteers are available upon request.

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