Graham Gets Wild at Wildest Dreams
Graham’s Winnipeg branch showed off their wild side for Assiniboine Park Zoo’s (APZ) fourth annual Wildest Dreams event!
20 Graham volunteers joined the APZ to help provide a once-in-a-lifetime zoo experience for children facing health and/or socio-economic challenges. This year, the organization worked with 14 different community organizations to identify children in need who would benefit most from this special event.
Wildest Dreams is not just a visit to the zoo, it’s a unique zoo experience. Children and their caregivers are given VIP treatment and the opportunity to enjoy a variety of activities that create special memories beyond an everyday zoo visit. Stations are set-up throughout the park, including bouncy castles, face painting, special information sessions on the animals, live dance instructions, and even an ice cream booth. Each child gets a goodie bag to take home which includes a zoo passport. There are four passport stations where guests go to get their passports stamped, helping to ensure the children don’t miss any of the great exhibits lined-up for them. All food and drinks are donated in-kind, so the guests don’t have to pay for anything – they enjoy the evening worry free!
Graham was the presenting sponsor of the event, donating $10,000 towards Wildest Dreams. These funds go directly to creating a unique zoo experience for children, as well as towards bringing disadvantaged or disabled children to the park throughout the year and allowing them to experience the wonders of nature year-round. This is the third consecutive year that Graham has sponsored the event.
“Graham has always been committed to making positive contributions to the communities in which we live and work, and the Wildest Dreams event fits that mandate perfectly,” says Dave Thusberg, District Manager, Graham. “A lot of people need and appreciate help from others. An evening at Wildest Dreams is a moment to forget about other things and have some fun.”
The event made an impact on more than just the guests – Graham volunteers took something away from the unique evening as well.
“In the construction industry, we sometimes take for granted the impact our end-product can have on the community,” says Tyler Pchajek, Project Coordinator, Graham. “With everything around us having some connection to the construction industry, I hope to one day be part of a project like a zoo, school, or park that creates a smile on a child’s face. The Assiniboine Park Zoo and the Wildest Dreams event did just that. I was glad to be part of it.”
“You could tell by the fun everyone was having, that the guests will remember the event for a long time,” shares Stephanie Silva, Office Manager, Graham. “It was a great reminder that volunteering goes a lot farther than the few hours we spent there.”