New 'Timeraiser' concept sweeping Canada, including Kamloops, as agencies search for answers to 'dichotomy'

By: September Kuromi
Published: April 12, 2012

There are lots of dichotomies around us – but two in particular sparked the imagination of the Framework organization, a charity itself, to try and fill a gap.   The challenge? To take the traditional ‘fundraiser’ model and make it benefit the community, sponsors, local artists and be appealing to young professionals.

Many volunteer agencies comment that they have trouble reaching the younger generations of volunteers.  Interestingly, these generation XYZ people the agencies are having trouble connecting with, are the same people who are changing the face of employment by demanding CSR programs and opportunities to volunteer at their place of employment.  Why is there a gap here?  What is the best way to connect young professionals with causes they care about?

Meanwhile artists struggle to find ways to bring their work to the wider public, and are often asked to donate to silent auction fundraisers.  Although many artists are happy to support good causes and are happy for the exposure, it doesn’t directly help their business.  There should be a better way to involve artists in fundraising efforts?

Framework came up with the Timeraiser idea.  The event was first held in Toronto in 2003 and 31 Timeraisers have been held in cities across Canada since then. 

So how does it work?

It is part volunteer fair, part silent art auction and part night on the town. 

Throughout the evening, participants meet with different agencies and match their skills to agency needs. Once they have made indicated some interests, they are eligible to bid on artwork. The big twist is rather than bid money, they bid with volunteer hours.  The art is purchased from local, emerging artists beforehand with corporate sponsorship. 

Participants get to learn about the volunteer opportunities in Kamloops and have a chance to earn artwork in return for their volunteer commitment.  Winning bidders have a year to complete their hours before they get to take the art home – and in that time, the art is on display at corporate sponsor’s offices. 

Marg Durnin of Volunteer Kamloops saw this event as an excellent offering to their members.  Coincidentally, September Kuromi of Social Fire Consulting saw this is community minded, social event was a perfect fit her business’ vision.  Together they are hosting a Timeraiser“i” – an independently run Timeraiser.

They are still opportunities to be a corporate sponsor to facilitate the purchase of more art and becoming a supporter of this great event.

The event will be Wednesday, June 20th (the summer solstice) at the Cactus Jacks Saloon Nightclub.  Tickets are $20 and will go on sale May 22nd.  Employees of sponsor companies get to attend for free – so if this sounds like something your office would love to partake in, get your company to become a sponsor.