Cancellation of 4-H on Parade won’t stop organization from giving back

Story by Stacie Gaetz


Photos by iStock

The 4-H on Parade event may have been cancelled but the organization’s spirit of giving back to the community is stronger than ever.

The event, which was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, would have taken place at Stampede Park at the end of May. Each year, 4-H sheep clubs that attend 4-H on Parade take turns raising and caring for an animal that will be sold in support of the charity of the club’s choice.

This year, the Irricana Beef and Multi Club has set up an online auction to sell a lamb they have been raising in support of Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) Alberta.

RMHC Alberta supports families seeking vital medical treatment for their seriously ill or injured child. The houses provide a home-away-from-home for families who need to travel for medical reasons.

“When asked why the charity was important to him, one of the junior members of the club said, ‘… because kids and their families matter’ – can’t argue with that!” said Laurie Jacob-Toews, chair of the 4-H Stampede Committee.

The auction will be open from 8 am on Friday, May 28 to 6 pm on Sunday, May 31.

The lamb, McFlurry, is a purebred Suffolk Lamb that was donated by Wheatland Equestrian and is being raised by the Rempfer family.

The club has also received support from Oxbar Farms and Irvine Tack & Trailer, who have generously supplied feed for McFlurry.

Jacob-Toews said 2020 will go down in history as one of the most challenging years to date. With 4-H Achievement Days, 4-H on Parade and many more in-person events being cancelled to due to COVID-19, members have adjusted well to the challenges facing them to finish off their 4-H year.

The club has adapted by doing Zoom meetings, putting together a virtual Achievement Day and creating the online charity auction.

“Please consider your continued support by bidding on any of the members’ lamb projects that they have worked so hard this year with feeding, haltering, and grooming, in every effort to bring some normalcy to their lives right now,” said Jacob-Toews.

For more information, visit the club’s Facebook page.